Speaker: Ioana Petrescu, Harvard Kennedy School
Synopsis: This is a chapter in the book “Democracy and Delivery: The Devil is in the Details,” in which I explore good practices in the delivery of public goods and services in a new category of democracy, neither nascent nor old, that I call an adolescent democracy. In this chapter, I describe some of the civil service problems specific to this type of democracy, such as clientelism and corruption, but also problems common to most democracies, such as extreme politization and inefficiency. I draw from my experience as the Finance Minister of Romania, economic adviser to the Romanian Prime Minister, and public sector consultant to various other countries to identify the best ways to change the bureaucrats’ incentives and behavior, increase bureaucrats’ performance and expertise, and design pay reform to cut corruption. I will present some policies meant to solve some of the civil servant problems, such as establishing a delivery unit at the center of government, a small group of people meant to monitor the delivery of the Prime Minister’s priorities.