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Civil Service Reform

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  • Gergely Ujhelyi

    ()
    (University of Houston)

Abstract

Civil service rules governing the selection and motivation of bureaucrats are among the defining institutions of modern democracies. Although this is an active area of reform in the US and elsewhere, economic analyses of the issue are virtually nonexistent. This paper provides the first welfare evaluation of civil service reform. It describes the effect of reform on the interaction of politicians, voters, and bureaucrats, and shows that society often faces trade-offs between improving the bureaucracy or improving the performance of politicians. My results characterize the conditions under which merit-based recruitment and civil service protections such as tenure can improve welfare.

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File URL: http://www.uh.edu/econpapers/RePEc/hou/wpaper/201303216.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Houston in its series Working Papers with number 201303216.

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Date of creation: 26 Nov 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hou:wpaper:201303216

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Postal: Houston TX 77023
Web page: http://www.uh.edu/class/economics/
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Related research

Keywords: civil service rules; bureaucracy; political agency;

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References

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  1. John Ferejohn, 1986. "Incumbent performance and electoral control," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 5-25, January.
  2. F. Andrew Hanssen, 2004. "Is There a Politically Optimal Level of Judicial Independence?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 712-729, June.
  3. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 2003. "Political Institutions and Policy Choices: Evidence from the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 41(1), pages 7-73, March.
  4. Eric Maskin, 2003. "The Politician and the Judge: Accountability in Government," Theory workshop papers 505798000000000076, UCLA Department of Economics.
  5. Ernesto Calvo & Gergely Ujhelyi, 2012. "Political Screening: Theory and Evidence from the Argentine Public Sector," Working Papers 201303201, Department of Economics, University of Houston.
  6. Timothy Besley & Michael Smart, 2005. "Fiscal Restraints and Voter Welfare," STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series 06, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  7. Torsten Persson & Gerard Roland & Guido Tabellini, . "Separation of Powers and Political Accountability," Working Papers 100, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  8. Canice Prendergast, 2007. "The Motivation and Bias of Bureaucrats," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 180-196, March.
  9. Stephen Coate & Brian Knight, 2009. "Government Form and Public Spending: Theory and Evidence from U.S. Municipalities," NBER Working Papers 14857, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Gergely Ujhelyi, 2014. "Civil Service Rules and Policy Choices: Evidence from US State Governments," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 6(2), pages 338-80, May.
  11. Blanes i Vidal, Jordi & Leaver, Clare, 2011. "Are tenured judges insulated from political pressure?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7-8), pages 570-586, August.
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Cited by:
  1. Gergely Ujhelyi, 2013. "Civil Service Rules and Policy Choices: Evidence from US State Governments," Working Papers 201303249, Department of Economics, University of Houston.

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