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Synopsis

Many countries have undertaken public administration reform projects over the last ten to fifteen years. This book analyzes the experiences and outcomes of these reforms. The analysis starts with 'what was broken"; and then moves on to assess what reformers actually did and what they achieved and why reformers faced with similar problems in different countries in fact did very different things. The conclusion is that the level and type of reform activity was determined primarily by the degree of traction available to reformers - the leverage available to reformers and the malleability of basic public sector institutions. In some countries reformers had considerable leverage and were able to launch comprehensive reform programs relatively quickly. In other countries with low traction and with comparatively complex constitutional arrangements for public sector architecture, implementing public administration reform appears to be particularly problematic. A number of practical suggestions for approaches to implementing public administration reform are then identified for policy makers and reformers in low traction countries such as the Russian Federation.

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