Il New public management in alcuni paesi in via di sviluppo tra eterogenesi dei fini e managerial fashion

(Public management reforms in developing countries between heteregenesis of purpose and managerial fashion)

Braga, Alessandro and Sancino, Alessandro (2013). Il New public management in alcuni paesi in via di sviluppo tra eterogenesi dei fini e managerial fashion

(Public management reforms in developing countries between heteregenesis of purpose and managerial fashion).
Rivista Italiana di Ragioneria e di Economia Aziendale RIREA, 113(7-8-9) pp. 695–708.

Abstract

The New Public Management (NPM) has become a universal movement of public sector reform on a global scale. In this perspective, the article aims to analyze the adoption of NPM in Developing Countries. This topic is particularly important because the extensive literature on NPM is mainly focused on Western Countries. From a methodological standpoint, our research is based on two case studies (Sub-Saharan Africa and Mongolia). Data have been gathered by documentary analysis and by literature review. The research questions explored are the following: which factors affect the implementation of public management reforms in Developing Countries? What kind of reforms have been implemented in Developing Countries? How the context has impacted in Developing Countries on the public management reforms analyzed? The case studies analysis showed that the most common factors that have led the implementation of public management reforms are the institutional and organizational isomorphism and the role of “managerial fashion”. In the Sub-Saharan African Countries we analyzed NPM inspired reforms according to five perspectives: decentralization, privatization, bureaucracy reform, agentification and corruption. In Mongolia we found that the attempt to apply the full model of NPM (according to New Zealand NPM model) did not lead to the expected results, due to the initial heterogeneous conditions between the two Countries in terms of organizational culture and capacity building of public sector institutions. Finally, our study shown that the model of NPM is a useful framework for designing public management reforms but it must be combined and integrated with the contextual factors because they play a decisive role in influencing the entire process of reforms adoption and implementations. Implications of our study call for a better consideration of the concepts of "heterogenesis of ends" and "managerial fashion" in order to better understand the trajectories and the expected outcomes of public management reforms in Developing Countries since public management reforms are path dependent and need to be sensitive to “operational reality”.

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