Power to the Ministries: Decentralization in the Civil Service, Botswana, 1999-2001
Focus: Civil Service
Topics: Training, Corruption in the Civil Service, Computerization of Records, Performance Management System
Type: Case Studies
Author: Daniel Scher
Keywords: , civil service, oversight, decentralization, computerization, Botswana
Between 1999 and 2001, the powerful Directorate of Public Service Management in Botswana decentralized personnel authority to line ministries. This process was critical in enabling ministries to be more efficient while also allowing the directorate to focus on more substantive issues concerning the public service. The Botswana case demonstrates three components that contributed to the successful devolving of responsibility from a central public service ministry: 1) the training for and establishment of new human resource mechanisms within the line ministries, 2) the creation of new accountability mechanisms to ensure that new powers were not abused, and 3) the creation of a new role and identity for the relatively disenfranchised central public service ministry.