What Challenges Does the Traditional Public Administration Encounter in a Changing Public Sector Environment

2121 Words Oct 23rd, 2012 9 Pages
WHAT CHALLENGES DOES THE TRADITIONAL PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION ENCOUNTER IN A CHANGING PUBLIC SECTOR ENVIRONMENT
The traditional model of public administration (TPA) remains the longest standing and most successful theory of management in the public sector which pre-dominated for most of the 20th century. The TPA can be characterized as an administration under the formal control of the political leadership which was based on a strictly hierarchical model of bureaucracy, staffed by permanent, neutral and anonymous officials, motivated only by the public interest, serving any governing party equally, and not contributing to policy but merely administering those policies decided by the politicians. Its theoretical foundations were mainly derived
…show more content…
According to Vecchio, (1991:510), to change the existing public system into one that is speedy, risk-taking, output-oriented, innovative and efficient requires a total change in organizational culture. The focus of subsequent reforms in the public service has been to move away from the idea of a rigid and bureaucratized career service, towards a more fluid structure. An example is that Foreign Direct Investment into Zimbabwe has been put under one roof to speed up processing and approval of projects.

Bureaucracy is another problem associated with the TPA model. In small organisations like Civil Aviation of Zimbabwe, bureaucracy is ideal for control of human resource due to its defined reporting and communication channels, it allows for certainty. Work is standardised due to laid down procedures, rules and regulations. The spans of control are scientifically calculated. However hierarchical structures are not good for management, is usually slow in moving, that is, work takes long to be accomplished and innovations are almost nonexistent. Any deviation from the norm through innovation can be punishable by law if ever anything goes wrong and investigations indicate that there was a deviation from the stipulated regulations or work procedures. However, Weber, in Hughes(2003:35) noted that, “every bureaucracy…

More about What Challenges Does the Traditional Public Administration Encounter in a Changing Public Sector Environment