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Updated A.Y. 2020-2021

Course Description

The course aims at providing general knowledge of public management, which has been part of the globalization process as attested by public sector reform models such as the New Public Management in the late 1980s and Public Governance in the early 1990s that have affected, although with different pace and approaches, almost every country in the world.

In developed countries, the mid-1970s crisis stimulated an international conversation, led by the OECD Public Management Committee that public sector reform should be a policy field in its own right. In developing countries, development organizations such as the UNDP and the World Bank realized that economic performance depended on an effective and efficient public sector and adopted and promoted the New Public Management model as well. Finally, also post-communism countries joined the managerial wave of modernization.

While the latest global (economic and health) crises have highlighted the fact once again that economic performance hinges on an effective public sector, models of reform have changed shifting from market-type mechanisms to networked and participatory approaches.

The course examines both the theoretical frameworks underlying public sector reforms in the past thirty years and the empirical evidence gathered so far.

Issues addressed during the course refer to the way in which globalization affects structure and purpose of governments, administrative reforms implemented to respond to globalization and their impact. Emerging theories guiding public management at the global level will also be discussed such as networks and public-private partnerships, co-production and open innovation. The issues of trust in government, ethics, conflicts of interest and fight of corruption will be discussed.

Finally, the potential contribution of strategic foresight in public management will be discussed, as an approach able to overcome the main weaknesses of the previous modernization attempts and as a way to enhance preparedness and resilience in public administrations.

Find more information in the Syllabus