Ebook: Winning the Needed Change: Saving Our Planet Earth
Winning The Needed Change: Saving our Planet Earth represents the outcome of long deliberations and systematic exchanges among the several members of a truly global team. It reflects a diversity of viewpoints and makes no claim to finality. However, it represents an effort to carry the debate, which started with the establishment of the International Institute of Administrative Sciences (IIAS), or arguably much earlier, one step further, onto the planetary level. It begins with an acknowledgement of the overarching role of the human factor in global governance and the critical importance of public service professionalism. It is hopefully only the first and one of many phases in the long, arduous process and worldwide debate, which is needed to elevate public service professionalism to a higher, global level. Cross-culturally conceived and written in three languages, this addition to the series of the IIAS on global governance issues is a must for any student or scholar of the subject, as well as a needed addition to university libraries and centres of research.
Three years ago in Berlin, the International Institute of Administrative Sciences (IIAS) celebrated its 75th anniversary. On that auspicious occasion, it also presented the volume which truly presaged our own. Entitled “The World We Could Win: Administering Global Governance”
Edited by Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi.
Edited by Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi.
Both crises in different ways, tested the will and capacity of global civil society and the organised community of nation states, still in a formative stage of their development. The sudden surge of “we-ness”, “widespread across time-zones” (G. Fraser-Moleketi 2005:vii), which the tsunami occasioned, contrasted very sharply with the challenge to legality and the global rule of law, which an act in violation of explicit treaty provisions so clearly represented. However, both events brought into sharp relief one of the principal facets of what the world community has by now come to expect of those who are entrusted with the responsibilities of “administering global governance”. We like to call it “reactive”; but a response to mega-crises and calamities on such a scale calls for advanced preparedness and functional systems in place, as well as skills, resources and expertise which, very few countries possess. The sharing of capacity and pooling of resources are clearly a prerequisite of effective global responses.
It is hardly a happenchance that reaction to the horrors of armed conflict, and the need to succour its victims occasioned the beginnings of humanitarian aid on a transnational scale and this, in turn, the birth of truly international organisations. The International Committee of the Red Cross is one of the earliest examples of institution-building on the international level (T.G. Weiss & L. Gordenker 1996). The pattern, which it set, was soon followed at such frequency that the concluding decades of the nineteenth century were subsequently credited with the creation and growth of “international unions” (G. Langrod 1963:31). The Universal Postal Union (1874), the International Telecommunications Union and the International Union for Protection of Property Rights (1883) trace their sources to this period. What they set out to accomplish was to move one step beyond a merely ad hoc response to crises as they occurred. Their goal became the establishment and maintenance of frameworks and regimes for cross-border cooperation in specific fields of activity. In an era which saw the emergence and acceleration of globalisation, these “unions” paved the way for closer cross-border exchanges and ease of communication. The need is ever-present accounting for the establishment of international agencies, particularly after the Second World War. However, notwithstanding the phenomenal expansion of institutionalised international activity and transborder cooperation in the past 60 years, it comes as no surprise that resistance to this trend still remains extremely potent. The forces of sectarianism and national exclusiveness, which dominated the scene during the interwar period, causing the rapid decline and ultimate demise of the League of Nations, may have receded somewhat, but have not disappeared. Ever-present in the background, they continue to do battle against the mounting claims of an international order and global public interest. These claims reassert themselves in the measure that civil society world-wide awakes to a consciousness of pressing global challenges and planetary threats.
This Working Group's report begins with an acknowledgement of those demanding challenges. They were defined conclusively by the Millennium Summit in a landmark Declaration which was signed by the vast majority of the world's Heads of State and Government (United Nations 2000). The timely implementation of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) calls for concerted action by Member States and close cooperation both with and in the framework of international agencies. Indeed, it may be affirmed that, in this Declaration, lies an implicit call for arguably a new form of and more proactive approach to global governance issues; one that looks beyond the crises afflicting the bulk of humanity – pressing as these may be – and strategically seeks to charter a course leading to balanced responses and long-term policy options towards a better world for future generations and Planet Earth, their home.
Though the over-riding claims of global common goods have been affirmed emphatically in the course of the recent decades, it would be fair to argue that the primacy of the “global” over rival “national” interests has known a chequered course. In fact, a powerful tension between the claims of “globalism” and those of “isolationism,” has been a constant factor in the dialectical progress of institution-building on the international level. Over the past one century, as we have seen, the forces of exclusiveness – both ethnic and religious – did win the upper hand with calamitous results, over varying periods of time. Even to-day, “my country right or wrong” resonates as a credible slogan in certain parts of the world, vociferously expressed by those who argue against all multilateral stances in the evolving pattern of global governance. The numerous proponents of realpolitik and advocates of unilateralism still exert substantial influence on foreign policy establishments around the world. And still the central governments of Member States remain the pivotal players in all decision making affecting the development of international agencies, both in the UN system and beyond.
Progression has been slow. And yet, in spite of setbacks in recent years especially, it is plausible to argue that gradually the voices lending support to measures global in scope, for the good of the world as a whole, begin to multiply. The Annual IIAS Conference in Berlin set an example, not merely through the Panel which presented “The World We Could Win ,” but also in the form of the keynote address which explored the critical issue of diminishing water resources in light of climate change. The Conference, in fact, has become a global forum to articulate these issues and place them in the limelight. More and more, in other words, a discernible trend is established to explore major issues of policy not from the vantage point of particular national interests, but from now well-accepted regional or globalist perspectives. We need to strengthen this tendency, indeed to encase it firmly in institutional frameworks which lend its outcomes weight, legitimacy, coherence, continuity and effectiveness. Much like its predecessor, which produced “The World We Could Win ”, this Working Group was founded in light of this problématique.
In September 2005, it hardly escaped our notice as we, Conference participants, reflected on the establishment of the IIAS, that the very thought of creating an International Institute of Administrative Sciences, when IIAS was born in 1930, implied some recognition of pubic administration as an autonomous field, amenable to study in a scientific way; open, in other words, to an objective, rigorous, systematic and dispassionate discourse, accross national boundaries. Likewise, it was the outgrowth of a long and chequered progress which changed a band of courtiers and title-holders into the modern profession of government. The slow but steady emergence of public service as a great profession paralleled the transformation of government departments into the self-contained and largely autonomous entities, which act as the repositories of institutional memory, keepers of “official thought” and nurseries of policies. It was a gradual process which nurtured and gave prominence to such important concepts as “independent influence ”, “objective and balanced advice” and “neutral competence” in the context of “good governance ”. Such marks of our profession took shape fully within the boundaries of nation states, as part of the construction of the administrative state and the état de droit.
We seem to be in the presence of a similar trend-in-the-making. It reflects an incipient need for an objective, thorough, professional and independent transborder treatment of problems, which are global in scope and, if not properly addressed, may carry calamitous risks for all life on Planet Earth and the future of humanity. Needless to emphasise that climate change is certainly of this nature. However, there are obviously many more of these problems, suggesting a pressing requirement for a more systematic, institutional approach to global problem-solving than has so far been evident. We badly need the know-how and expertise, but also a disposition for globalist approaches and globalist solutions to truly global problems. This, only a corps of people duly selected, trained and fully dedicated to the service of humanity and the global public interest can offer. The gravity of the challenges confronting us today demands the service of people who, to paraphrase President J.F. Kennedy, will “ask not what the world can do for them, but what they can offer the world.”
It is this sense of urgency that prompted the creation of our Working Group. Its report represents the outcome of long deliberations and systematic exchanges among the several members of a truly global team. It reflects a diversity of viewpoints and makes no claim to finality. However, it represents an effort to carry the debate, which started with the establishment of the IIAS, or arguably much earlier, one step further, onto the planetary level. It begins with an acknowledgement of the overarching role of the Human Factor in global governance and the critical importance of public service professionalism. It is hopefully only the first and one of many phases in the long, arduous process and worldwide debate, which are needed to elevate public service professionalism to a higher, global level.
 Fraser-Moleketi, G. (2005) The World We Could Win: Administering Global Governance, Amsterdam, IOS Press
 Langrod, G. (1963) La Fonction Publique Internationale, Leyden, A.W. Sythoff
 Weiss, T.G. & L. Gordenker (Eds) (1996) NGOs, The UN & Global Governance, London, Lynne Rienner Pub.
 United Nations (2000) A/RES/55/2/8.9.2000
We call it “Human Factor” because, of all the inputs to the productive process and to decision-making, it carries greatest weight and really makes the difference. It has been rightly called both “wayward” and “uncertain” (K.Popper) because, as all the literature and history have shown, it can lead to sublime but also disastrous results; to peaks of creativity, but also depths of depravity. How to harness the human potential towards constructive ends, not merely for the good of segments of humanity and to short-term advantage, but for the global good and long-term public interest has been the goal assigned to the present exploration. Lip service notwithstanding, as this report will show, the structures and the culture required for global governance – the “what”, the “how” and the “who” of global public service and public administration – have not yet received the attention which they deserve. The striking disconnect, between the current rhetoric and failure to provide convincing responses to challenges which confront our Planet Earth, account for the decline of public trust and the mood of disenchantment which is currently sweeping the world. To address this looming crisis, we must start by restoring the substance of governance to democratic government. It is becoming clear that the future of our Planet cannot be left to chance, to a sleight of the “invisible hand” or the forces of the market. The diversity and complexity of the problems facing the world call for solid institutions of multi-layer governance but, more than anything else, for a compact group of professionals with deep knowledge of the issues, solid practical experience, exceptional technical skills and above all an ethos and firm commitment to serve the global public good. Divided in two main Parts, this study offers insights into the many challenges confronting global governance, the profile and the role required of human resources to face up to these challenges and – in the Second Part – the current state of training and development of public service cadres in some of the world's regions; the problems that afflict the public service world-wide and what needs to be done to make the human factor a catalyst of change towards the World We Could Win.
This chapter sets the scene for a detailed exploration of the human factor in global governance, both in theory and in practice. While emerging systems or patterns of global governance are open to a variety of interpretations and possible descriptions, two prominent features are singled out in this chapter for particular attention. The first concerns the nature and scope of global governance and what may be described as global public goods. The second is the issue of power and power relationships, which are of immediate significance to the various forms of global collective action. These features constitute the functional and institutional foundations on which the human factor can be addressed. They influence, if not determine, the prospects for global governance in the foreseeable future. They pose challenges for those involved in the sectors and structures within or through which collective action can be fostered and maintained on a global scale. Too often, the existing literature gives scant attention ‘to the actors and mechanisms behind the exercise of power outside the compass of States’. In response to this condition, the calls for democratisation and accountability of global governance need to be linked to a ‘detailed consideration of governance mechanisms’ (Whitman 2002:47), including the extent to which they are appropriately geared to the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Must international bureaucrats and governments be blamed for humanity's current predicament? The question has been raised in recent years insistently, as challenges have mounted calling to question the effectiveness of the international structures and policies in place for the purpose of addressing them. After a hopeful start in 1945 and more than three decades of decolonisation and development, the world experimented with new approaches to governance. Allied to implicit faith in private sector capacity to drive the growth agenda, the concept of the “Shrinking State” emerged as a critical element of the “Washington Consensus” which dominated the scene during the eighties and nineties. Promoted by the Bretton Woods and other key international financial institutions, the new model deflected attention from traditional concerns with public service reform and state capacity-building, calling instead for “outsourcing”, massive privatisation and “at will employment practices” in the public sector. Applied to the international, as well as to the national and the sub-national levels, these glamourised solutions have seldom brought about the hoped-for results. Rather in many cases, have they compounded the problems which they were meant to address. At the dawn of this new century, the Millennium Declaration listed those problems succinctly and introduced a “road map” towards their partial solution by 2015. Half-way towards this target date, the challenges have mounted and new ones have emerged. Climate change, corruption and lawlessness, with poverty and insecurity, now top the list internationally.
With wars and other crises providing a doubtful backdrop, the international community is beginning to revisit the policies and practices that have clearly not availed and to debate alternatives to failed unilateral stances, working towards a pattern of multi-layer synergies in multilateral governance. Crucial to needed success is the role of human resources, which are badly in need of development after a long neglect. In the developing countries, the universally diminished appeal of the public service profession has been compounded by braindrain. Many a national government and international agencies find it hard to attract, retain, develop and motivate capable men and women for the tasks of global governance and socio-economic development. These tasks call for a mix of knowledge, high-level skills, know-how, experience and ethos, which makes up the profile – the human resources, in fact – required for global governance. The primacy of professionalism highlights the need for knowledge, maturity and sophistication over the claims of narrow and not infrequently biased over-specialisation. Integrity is of the essence of public service professionalism and this entails devotion to the long-term common good over particularistic concerns for self or one's own “in-group”. In multi-layer governance, this can best be developed by careers exemplifying mobility, training as life-long learning and exposure to the challenges of programmes and issues touching several countries and/or a diversity of interests.
In recent years increasingly, Public Administration has become a discipline with relevance not only to the national, the local and other sub-national levels, but also the transborder, regional, international and global service levels. Specific issues pertaining to institutional support and development structures, decision-making processes and their staffing have progressively become a focus of both training and research. This chapter focuses on these issues. It argues that developing and retaining a strong cadre of global public servants represent urgent imperatives, as well as preconditions for solutions to a growing list of global challenges. They range from global warming and climate change to poverty reduction, post-conflict reconstruction and socio-economic development. It is further argued that the creation of a cadre of global public servants is an important and necessary element of any strategy aimed at addressing the institutional challenges of global governance. The context, in which human resource development for global public service takes place, requires multilateral structures. These are needed to address skills shortages, particularly acute in the developing countries, while ensuring that the developed world, which benefits from the migration of skilled workers and professionals, offers something in return. The chapter proposes the establishment of a Global Public Service Academy to coordinate a global network of accredited institutions. The Academy could be established within the existing United Nations system. It should develop a set of minimum quality standards and criteria upon which institutions seeking accreditation would package and customise their programmes and course offerings.
Crises, man-made or otherwise, have marked this first decade of the 21st century. A decade which started on an upbeat note with the landmark Declaration of the Millennium Assembly (September 2000), will soon approach its end amidst the uneasy awareness that new, more daunting challenges may soon overshadow the problems which the Millennium Assembly and its Development Goals had cogently tried to address. From wars in Western Asia, through persisting absolute poverty and steeply rising prices, to planetary perils entailed in climate change, rapidly mounting crises have exposed for all to see a startling capacity-deficit in governance and governments both to contain the extent and to provide solutions to problem situations, which take on global dimensions and are spinning out of control.
This chapter tries to explore one dimension of this deficit: integrity and professionalism as critical components of what we call good governance. Integrity and professionalism conditioned the success of reforms from the days of French Revolution to decolonisation and the development programmes of the mid-twentieth century. Their rather steep decline from the nineteen eighties and nineties represents a major facet of the erosion of public service, which is a salient feature of our current global predicament and a foremost theme of this study. To arrest and reverse this erosion, tinkering with the problems with spin and pious pronouncements but few coherent measures, will simply not avail. The time has come to revisit and reconsider a public service model, as well as a system of government which “hollowed out” the State and deconstructed the concept of public or“general interest”, thus undermining the role of public service professionals as vectors of official thought and custodians of the common good.
Equating public sector with private sector management, the new model de-emphasised not only the idiosyncracies but also the requirements of rule of law and due process, ethics and spirituality, that are the very core of public service professionalism. The entrepreneurial manager was lionised and “results over process” presented as the core of the new model. It has done little to improve efficiency and effectiveness. Venality and corruption of public life, however, became a way of life in many a public service. They have grown pari passu with an attitude of mind which, in spite of much lip service to “social responsibility”, poses personal gratification over the common good, fosters what has been called “a bottom line mentality” and subordinates all values to utility considerations. Such instrumental reasoning and opportunism explain the egregious actions in many a public agency, national and international, in recent years. They also serve to explain the “at will employment practices” and overall approach to human resources management, whose net effect thus far has been to undermine commitment to professionalism and service of the common good.
Connected to this trend is devaluation of knowledge and stress on “how to skills”, viewing the same in light of short-term considerations. Such instrumental reasoning ignores the important need for self-actualisation and related long-term commitment to public service. It has gone hand-in-hand with the depreciation of personal responsibility as the core of professional ethics. This chapter makes a distinction between two systems of ethics: the ethics of obedience and the ethics of responsibility, which arguably lie at the core of contemporary systems of ethics, public or private. This and spirituality, which should not be considered as “religion in disguise”, are considered as conditions sine qua non of a public service reform and professional revival.
The major paradigm shift implicit in global governance has introduced the need for reconsideration of the nature of the mechanisms through which the human factor in Africa can be deployed and used to maximise its benefit to Africa and its peoples. For many years already, the region has tried to break free of the vicious circle engendered by absolute poverty, with all that it entails. Breaking this vicious circle calls for pragmatic leaders. This chapter addresses the nature and several dimensions of the leadership required, in the framework of an overall effort to upgrade the human factor and human resources management in public service reform.
The chapter forcefully argues that only sustainable leadership can be effective, in Africa or elsewhere. Such leadership is borne of respect for continuity, constitutional propriety and respect for the rule of law. It is also the type of leadership which corresponds most closely to the African context and cultures. Perhaps more than all else, it is leadership that creates and sustains legitimacy on the operational level by bringing to light, forcefully, the close interdependencies between the several layers of governance: local, district, national, regional and inter-regional.
Today, the structures and processes of governance foster and sustain strong linkages and networks among these various levels, as well as between the public and private sectors and civil society agencies. These call for knowledge, skills, capacities, values and attitudes, which greatly add to the role, the meaning and importance of the human factor. They bring into sharp relief values like accountability, transparency, integrity, respect for diversity, public service professionalism and self-denial. Observable shortfalls in these overarching values have greatly complicated the needed task of building social capital in Africa, as well as making Africa a significant player, with a voice in the international counsels.
The transformation needed to make up for lost time and bridge the development gap with much of the rest of the world calls for special leadership qualities, which this chapter analyses. They include integrative ability, entrepreneurial ability, administrative ability and operative ability. Examples may be found in the persons of Nelson Mandela and Julius Nyerere. They show the virtue and need of well-balanced individuals with the appropriate mix of qualities and skills, but all wrapped in a sound character and honest personality.
Without forgetting the past, we need to look to the future and look to pragmatic solutions in addressing the problems at hand. Though braindrain is a problem for most developing countries, a lot more can be accomplished by sharpening the focus, upgrading the capacities and reinforcing networks among the African institutes, which have been tasked with building future leaders and with generally raising the quality of the human resources in Africa. The chapter makes the point that public sector reform in Africa has suffered from three historic faults. One is the failure to upgrade the role of human resources management and turn it into a strategic partner in public service reform. The second is the failure to make much better use of Institutes and Universities, whose task has been the training and development of future leaders. Last but not least, is the failure to move with the times. Still too few of the programmes of training of public servants encompass global concerns or look to building capacities on issues of global governance and leadership. The challenges of globalisation make new and greater demands on the human factor globally. It is a fitting subject for further exchanges and study under IIAS auspices.
In some respects, the Arab world, composed of 22 Arabic-speaking members of the Arab League, shares a common administrative legacy. It represents the fruit of parallel development of all the countries concerned in one geographical region under the powerful influence of certain dominant factors. These factors have been chiefly: a) a harsh physical environment, and the economy of scarcity; b) Islam, a driving force and a pervasive doctrine, acknowledging no clear separation of Church and State; and c) a heritage encompassing some very diverse streaks derived from the Sassanian and Byzantine Empires, but mostly from the Ottomans, who dominated the region for almost six centuries, and from the Western powers that followed suit: firstly Britain and France, especially in the inter-war years, and the United States, since World War II.
The cumulative impact of the remarkable rise and rapid expansion of Arab power, its singular accomplishments but also growing tensions caused by dynastic conflicts, helped generate a doctrine of Arab governance which underscored the importance of unity and stability, underpinned by tacit acceptance of shared moral values. Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406) was the leading exponent of this world-view in his history of Arab governance (Almuqadama). Colonial domination exposed the Arab countries to powerful Western influences. In retrospect, however, the administrative patterns and structures introduced by major Western powers seldom produced the effects that might have been expected. Often, “their role in the colonies was primarily the negative one of maintaining internal security”. This partly explains the reactions which “policy transfers” engender when seen as blatant interference in a country's domestic affairs, and as contrary to its culture.
The current state and progress of public administration in Arab lands is one of unequal development. On the one hand, great strides have been accomplished in the realm of human development; on the other hand, the record of integrity, in most of the countries concerned, leaves much to be desired, according to the Index of Transparency International. In spite of attempted reforms, most administrative systems in the Arab world remain singularly top heavy and overly centralised. Concentration of responsibility and the top and at the centre does not create conditions where transparency and accountability can flourish; where criteria of efficiency and rationality prevail. Public services remains underpaid but overstaffed, with rigidities that render any improvement hard to achieve. Administrative structures raise obstacles to change. But lack of political will, allied to a conservative culture, are even bigger hurdles. The inevitable conclusion, which may be drawn from the collective experience of the region, points to the role of leadership in administrative reform. It underscores the importance of political will and a process of socialisation, which seeks to capitalise on the common needs and values of citizens, stakeholders and public servants. Professionalism is critical, given not only the challenges but also the opportunities for the Arab States ahead.
The nations of South Asia were the first among the developing countries to receive their independence from the British, immediately after World War II. These nations share a common administrative style and bureaucratic culture, which flow from their imperial legacy. However, a quick mapping expedition reveals the presence and resilience of the classical administrative style of India, which continued to be present until the end of the 12th Century, in spite of repeated invasions from Alexander the Great to those of the Scythians, Huns, Afghans and Turks. This was modified somewhat when Mohamed Ghuri established Muslim rule in the region. Thereafter, the five centuries of Muslim governance were followed by 200 years of British rule. Thus, there emerged, in South Asia, a high degree of convergence between the ancient Hindu culture and subsequent Islamic and Christian values systems. As a consequence of this, the administrative tradition of India and its neighbours shows three distinct characteristics: persistence from classical times, convergence with the Islamic and Christian mores and patterns, as well as some divergence in the wake of independence. This chapter examines these features. It also explores the challenges which the countries of the region face today. Foremost among them are politicisation of the bureaucracy, the need to fight corruption and the difficulty of reforming entrenched bureaucratic procedures. The chapter concludes by suggesting that, despite these daunting challenges, the process of modernisation is slowly taking hold and opening new prospects for a vibrant, inclusive and empowered India and neighbouring South Asian states.
En los últimos 15 años la comunidad internacional ha aceptado un conjunto de Objetivos, Metas y Convenios que constituyen los propósitos que la humanidad se ha propuesto cumplir en los próximos decenios del siglo. En primer término, La Convención Marco de la ONU sobre Cambio Climático (1991); las metas acordadas en la Asamblea de la ONU de Río de Janeiro sobre la protección del medio ambiente (1992); El Convenio sobre Diversidad Biológica (1992); El Plan de Acción de la Conferencia sobre Población y Desarrollo (1994); Los Objetivos del Desarrollo del Milenio de la ONU (2000); el Protocolo de Kyoto (2002) y la reunión de Bangkok (2008); La Convención de la ONU de Lucha contra la Desertificación y la Sequía (2003); y, se deben agregar, también las aportaciones académicas en esta materia como los trabajos del Premio Nobel Amartya Sen, del profesor Jeffrey Sachs y el libro de IIAS, “El Mundo que Queremos Alcanzar” 2005.
Por otra parte, existen conflictos y situaciones violentas en distintas partes del mundo que las instituciones supranacionales y los gobiernos de países deben eliminar. Nos referimos a las circunstancias críticas que se han presentado en Colombia, Kosovo, Líbano, la Franja de Gaza, Israel, Palestina y Siria, el país Kurdo, Afganistán, Irak, los países del Cuerno de África (Etiopía, Eritrea y Somalia), Darfur, Zimbabue, Chad, República Centro Africana, El Delta del Níger, Sri Lanka, Cachemira, El Tíbet, etc.
Es un hecho que a pesar del progreso alcanzado y de los éxitos aislados que las propias Naciones Unidas nos han dado a conocer, los objetivos globales y sus metas están lejos de ser cumplidos. En algunos casos ha habido retrocesos, por ejemplo, el crecimiento de la brecha de riqueza entre naciones y la desigualdad entre grupos sociales al interior de muchos países. Lejos está también, el cumplimiento de los propósitos sobre los temas de protección al medio ambiente y el desarrollo sostenible.
Para avanzar se requiere como condición sine qua non, la existencia de buenos gobiernos nacionales orientados hacia el bien común, y la existencia de administraciones públicas competentes que apoyen a sus gobiernos. Los hombres y las mujeres que trabajan en las instituciones son, en última instancia, quienes deben lograr que los programas se cumplan eficientemente, que los resultados se alcancen y que los organismos funcionen apropiadamente. A esos hombres y mujeres que integran las administraciones en todos los órdenes les hemos llamado: El Factor Humano. Para conseguir los resultados que la humanidad se ha propuesto, en los próximos diez o quince años, es indispensable mejorar el perfil de los servidores públicos locales, nacionales e internacionales.
En Iberoamérica y El Caribe se estudió la situación que guarda actualmente la educación superior. Es difícil aspirar a un competente servicio civil en Latinoamérica si la calidad de la educación superior es inferior a otras regiones del mundo. Se llegó a la conclusión de que la educación superior de América Latina no tiene el grado de internacionalización que exige el mundo globalizado de hoy ni prepara, en general, a graduados que tengan la vocación y los instrumentos para hacer frente al combate a la pobreza, al mejoramiento de la alimentación y la salud, a la protección del medio ambiente y al desarrollo sustentable para una vida mejor.
En otra sección del trabajo se discute el grave problema de la fuga de talentos (brain drain) y sus consecuencias para la región. Se estudió comparativamente el tema del estado actual del servicio civil en los países latinoamericanos. El resultado es que deja mucho que desear la política de desarrollo de recursos humanos en la mayoría de los países. Por el contrario, el servicio diplomático en los grandes países de América Latina está bien organizado y tiene una elevada calidad humana y de formación. Sin embargo, resulta muy claro que los diplomáticos iberoamericanos y de El Caribe no consideran como su responsabilidad directa alcanzar los objetivos de la humanidad a los que se ha hecho referencia. En consecuencia se hacen necesarios algunos cambios a sus programas de capacitación.
¿Sobre quienes recae la responsabilidad de cumplir en tiempo los propósitos globales aprobados para la región latinoamericana?. En primer lugar, naturalmente, sobre la clase política dirigente en cada nación y en cada localidad. En segundo lugar, sobre los servidores públicos que trabajan en las instituciones nacionales y regionales. Sin embargo, a menos que haya un cambio en el perfil de los servidores públicos las acciones seguirán marchando tan lentamente como hasta ahora.
El trabajo concluye con la propuesta de crear un grupo de mérito o un grupo de élite entre los servidores públicos de cada país latinoamericano cuya responsabilidad directa y principal sea vigilar el cumplimiento de los grandes propósitos de la humanidad mediante la elaboración de políticas públicas adecuadas, pero sobretodo a través de una permanente actitud de honestidad, de ética pública, de servicio al bien común y al interés general.
La formación de los futuros miembros de estos grupos de mérito, requerirá modificaciones de fondo a los vigentes paradigmas de capacitación y formación de los servidores públicos de alto nivel.
La place du facteur humain dans la gouvernance – et donc dans la gouvernance globale – a toujours été sous-évaluée ou faussée dans les fictions unidimensionnelles – politico – administrative, économique ou sociale – sur lesquelles se sont construits les différents modèles d'administration qui se sont succédés jusqu'aujourd'hui. Ce n'est que si l'Etat cessait d'être perêu comme simple dispositif technique d'exercice de la puissance publique – appareil de contrainte et de coercition – pour être enfin analysé pour ce qu'il est vraiment – une collectivité d'hommes et de femmes dont l'adhésion fonde les actions qu'il entreprend – que l'on pourrait s'acheminer vers une meilleure gouvernance des sociétés. Une telle perspective impliquerait alors, d'une part, face aux déficits de légitimité qui affectent le fonctionnement des Etats, de chercher les voies d'une re-légitimation de leur action, sans pour autant tomber dans les pièges, – facilités ou tentations – d'une sous- ou d'une sur-légitimité ; et d'autre part, face à la croissante complexité des collectivités et des organisations qui les gèrent, de s'attacher à retisser en leur sein les liens sociaux menacés de désagrégation, par la refondation de ce que l'on appelle volontiers l'Etat stratège sur des mécanismes décisionnels et normatifs associant pleinement les membres des sociétés à leur fonctionnement.
The principles of “solidarity”, “shared responsibility”, “tolerance for diversity” and of “respect for nature”, which form the basic premises on which this Group has built, are certainly not new. Highlighted in the Charter of the United Nations in 1945, they were reiterated in the landmark Declaration of the Millennium Assembly (September 2000). Although in six decades since the end of WWII, the world has been transformed in many significant ways, the challenges facing humanity have anything but vanished. Rather, they have increased in scale and in complexity but, more than anything else, migrated to a higher plane. Indeed, many such problems present themselves today as truly transborder in scope, requiring novel processes and different approaches for broader, global treatment and resolution. The structures and the culture to this effect were briefly touched upon in a previous publication of the IIAS entitled “The World We Could Win”. The focus of this Group has been the Human Factor; the profile of the leaders required for global governance; and the making of such leaders as public service professionals. Working under the auspices of the IIAS, the Group has advanced a number of recommendations, which are reproduced below in the hope of serving as framework for a truly global debate on these important issues.
That Global Governance be Recognised to Mean a Democratic System of Multilateral Governance
Many of the recent crises, which continue to bedevil the international community, have been due, in no small part, to failure of some governments to make effective use of an established machinery for the settlement of disputes, the preservation of peace and the promotion of policies which deal with critical issues of long-term strategic concern. There can be little doubt that multilateral processes and complex inter-governmental structures can be cumbersome and slow. They need to be streamlined and rendered more efficient. However, multilateralism is here to stay. Not only is it best suited to securing the broad consensus required for cooperation among concerned stakeholders on the international plane; it is also more in tune with salient long term trends in the direction of a multi-polar and highly diversified global community, in which it is increasingly essential for States, markets and civil society to interact collaboratively, in addressing global and regional issues and concerns.
That Democratic Global Governance must Exemplify Respect for the Rule of Law and Due Process
International law and the Comity of Nations constitute the essential basis for multilateral governance. Consonant with provisions in the Charter of the United Nations, strict observance of treaty obligations, respect for human rights, the rule of law and due process, should be the cornerstone of international relations on all levels, regional, sub-regional and global. Negotiation, conciliation, cooperation, consensus and compromise should be the ways and processes to global policy – making, conflict management and resolution.
That a Corps of Global Public Servants be Established
A corps of high-level professionals in the service of public affairs on the transnational level and the global common good be made available globally, regionally and sub-regionally, in order to facilitate the above mentioned processes. The concept is not new. It was first articulated in the International Secretariat, which was established to serve the League of Nations, when the latter was created after the First World War. The present recommendation brings the concept up-to-date but seeks to focus it rather on key priority areas representing major challenges for the whole community of nations. The mission of this corps and essential raison d'être would be to ascertain that, on issues of crucial importance, high-level professional inputs, in both the policy-making and implementation phases, would be routinely available to the decision-takers. Given the wide diversity of viewpoints and perspectives, it is considered necessary that this corps be recruited from all geographical regions and major cultural groups, on a widely representative basis. With the world as catchment area, it should not prove impossible to secure the very best of talent for global public service.
That the Organs of Corps Governance be placed under U.N. Auspices
The global public service should be placed under the auspices of the United Nations, which would exercise its guidance through the United Nations System Staff College in Turin. Oversight and supervision, through the College, would be entrusted to the UN Committee of Experts in Public Administration, which reports to the Economic and Social Council. Through the Council, the Committee will account to the World Body on the progress of the corps in fulfilling its mandate and in meeting its objectives. The direct supervision and management of the global public service will be vested in an Academy and an Office of Personnel Services, which ought to be created in order to instill and to maintain the needed degree of cohesion in the Corps.
An Office of Personnel Services will provide the necessary administrative support to the new corps and, guided by the Academy, will carry out the tasks of Human Resources Management and Development. These should include: the establishment of posts and determination of levels on the national, sub-regional, regional and global levels; prospection, selection and recruitment of members of the corps; deployment and mobility, with career paths ensuring uniform standards of personal growth and development for the men and women members of the corps, as well as congruent systems of rewards and remuneration for all.
That a Global Public Service Academy be Established
The Academy will be required to ensure the performance of functions, which are considered vital to the establishment and maintenance of the unity, cohesion and quality of performance to which the Corps should aspire. In essence, these tasks should include:
• Standard setting: determination of standards for entry into the corps in distinct fields of activity, where members of the corps will operate;
• Setting performance benchmarks that might serve both as guidelines for pre- and in-service training and the subsequent evaluation of members of the Corps;
• Accreditation: Affiliated institutes, which offer to take part in the pre- and inservice training of members of the corps, will be subject to periodic evaluation and accreditation with a view to creating and maintaining a consistently high performance standard among these schools and institutes. In this way, the preparation and training may be organised in a decentralised fashion, throughout the world, as well as in several languages, without sacrificing quality and unity of direction.
• R & D: research and training development for the purpose of promoting innovative curricula. Further to serving as an accreditation agency, the Academy will be intended to provide a centre of excellence and create a learning environment for global public servants. It should develop partnerships with all concerned stakeholders in the design and delivery of quality educational and training programmes. More than anything else, it should nurture and promote a healthy esprit de corps and public service professionalism among members of the Corps.
That Selection and Recruitment follow Best Tested Patterns
Selection and Recruitment may follow a pattern analogous to that already established for the National Professional Competitive Examination of the UN Secretariat. The range of areas covered in the recruitment process should be reviewed periodically and determined by the Academy in light of priority objectives, known challenges and needs in global and regional governance. The numbers may be small but the levels must be high and, as already stated, the catchment area global. Effectively, this means that all young women and men having the needed background, experience and qualifications at the appropriate level (Masters or Ph.D.) may apply. Contrary to the practice of the UN Secretariat, however, the exams should be conducted in broad geographical regions and all major language groups.
That Deployment and Mobility be accorded their due weight
Deployment and development of global public servants must focus on the needs of international agencies within the UN system and beyond, as well as those of key regional, sub-regional and even national organisations, but with priority attention accorded to critical areas of development policy-making, pressing challenges for global governance and administrative reform. The intention is that career progression should be through stints of service on the national, sub-regional, regional and global levels. Mobility is of the essence for sound career development and a critical requisite of creating the needed corps of versatile professionals to confront the major challenges, which face our Planet Earth and humanity as a whole.
That the National, Sub-regional and Regional Dimensions be Given Close Attention in an Attempt to Arrest and to Reverse the Braindrain
The Project's global scope should not obscure its important national, sub-regional and regional dimensions. They are all inter-related in the measure that sound progress in addressing world-wide problems begins on the national level, and on the ground. The need to share know-how and expertise, as well as technical competence in ICT and to provide support in planning and implementing national development strategies cannot be overestimated.
For Africa, in particular, recalling the MDGs in the Summit Declaration, training offerings and curricula must be reviewed periodically to cater for the needs brought about by globalisation and their interaction with the rest of the world. Such sharing of training experiences needs to be enhanced in order to make the training institutes themselves globally oriented. Staff exchanges among African MDIs, IPA and University faculties need to be intensified, but not only by bringing lecturers and consultants from the developed world to Africa, as was the case in the past, but also taking experts from African Institutes to those of developing countries (South to South cooperation).
The Human Resource, in the public sector especially, requires greater attention than has been paid to it in past public sector reforms. The function of Human Resource Management (especially in the Ministries) needs to be elevated to a higher strategic level, in order to ensure that development of human capacities is handled by competent managers, who are professionally apt to carry out the job. In order to advocate this and also increase opportunities for Human Resource Capacity-Building, Human Resource managers of the Public Sector in Africa need to be effectively encouraged to constitute an Africa-wide network. This will enable them to contribute to their own capacity- building through research, experience-sharing, dissemination of practices and training in various aspects of Human Resource Development and Management.
That Priority be Accorded to Regaining and Retaining Public Trust
This is a major pillar and purpose of this project. Global ethical values and standards, including meeting the need of the Corps to serve as custodian and steward of Another basic requisite is the quality and effectiveness of the work performed by the corps. In this context, it is recommended that an attempt be made to bridge, if not to close, the gaps existing between States, markets and civil society. This involves understanding the nature and significance of the various institutions that are active in these spheres, the legal instrumentalities adopted, the processes and patterns of decision-making, the ways in which people are categorised and responded to as “citizens”, “voters”, “customers”, “clients”, “members”, “beneficiaries”, and so on.
Building a better future: Attracting and retaining a fair share of the talent available world-wide
We need to reposition professional careers in the public service globally, as avenues of choice. Of course, we need to acknowledge that this can only happen if certain conditions are met. The first is selection by merit and a rigorous system of training – training as life-long learning - which meets the highest standards of professional excellence. These need to win recognition and to command respect. The institution of the Academy – Recommendation V – is intended to further this goal. The Academy, however will need to establish benchmarks and, looking to the future, create innovative programmes to meet emerging challenges. It has been recommended that such performance benchmarks and such innovative programmes become the target and focus of a new Working Group on the global public service.
Selection and Recruitment go in tandem with retention, development and motivation. Retention and development are contingent on rewards which, worldwide in the past twenty years, have not received the attention they undoubtedly deserve. Rewards are said to fall into two main categories:
• Extrinsic rewards, which stem from the decisions and actions of other people Examples of extrinsic rewards include salary increases, achievement awards, and promotion; and
• Intrinsic awards, which emanate from the nature of the work or the activity itself. Examples of intrinsic rewards include pride of accomplishment, enhanced self-esteem, satisfaction with a job well-done and the joy at seeing results from one's own hard work and effort.
Therefore, it is recommended that the new Working Group of the IIAS combine its study of benchmarks and of innovative programmes with a study and proposals on novel rewards systems, which would promote professionalism but also help retain well-trained and competent officers within the broad parameters of the global public service.
[1 ] Fraser-Moleketi, G. (2005) The World We Could Win, Amsterdam, IOS Press.
[2 ] United Nations (2006) Human Resources for Effective Public Administration in a Globalized World, New York, Foreword.
[3 ] United Nations (2008) “Improving the effective and efficient delivery of the mandates of the development related activities and the revised estimates relating to the programme budget for the biennium 2008–2009” Report of the Secretary-General, New York, A/62/25.2.2008.