Pakistan Institute of Development Economics

PIDE Policy Viewpoint 07:2017
Strengthening Public Sector Capacity For Improved Governance In Pakistan
Publication Year : 2017

Public Sector Capacity Refers To The Policy Capacity,Implementation Authority And Operational Efficiency Of A Government.These Are The Crucial Elements Of A Government’s Institutionalstructure To Effectively Achieve Chosen Policy Outcomes Through The Exercise Of Power And Deployment Of Resources. Good Governance Is Reliant On The Capacity Of Public Institutions And Administration To Manage Collective Public Affairs And Public Resources. Despite Several Capacity-Building Initiatives To Improve The Public Policy Processes In Pakistan, Evidence Indicates Deficiencies In The Quality Of Governance And Public Sector Management. Based On A Larger Study, Titled ‘Foreign Technical Assistance And Public Sector Capacity In Pakistan’, This Policy Viewpoint Presents The Key Findings And Suggests Recommendationsunderliningthe Institutionaland Technicalcapacity Issues Andshortages Inpakistan. Technical Capacity Shortages Response To Technical Capacity Shortages There Are Severe Shortages Of Research, Planning And Project Management Skills, And Considerable Deficiencies In Monitoring And Evaluation (M&E), And Operations And Maintenance (O&M) Practices In The Pakistan Government. Although The Experience And Calibre Of Senior Government Officials Is Satisfactorily Good, It Is Dramatically Poor At The Lower Levels Of Public Management. These Shortages Undermine The Government’s Performance In Policy Formulation,Programme Implementation And Monitoring Of The Public Sector Development Initiatives. Responding To The Technical Capacity Shortages In The Public Sector, Evidence Suggests A Passive Approach Of The Pakistan Government Towards Overcoming Capacity Constraints. Apart From The Mandatory Administrative Andmanagement Trainingof Civil Servants For Promotion To Higher Service Grades, The Government Usually Hires Consultants And/Or Relies On Foreign Technicalassistance To Fillthe Capacity Gaps.These Consultants, Be They Pakistani Nationals Or Expatriates, Or Of Foreign Origin, Hired Usually On Special Pay Packages, May Have International Experience And Expertise, But Are Mostly Alien To The Domestic Public Administrative Practices Andpoliticalrealities.