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Islands of Merit- Explaining Partial “Meritocratization” in the Egyptian Bureaucracy

Söderberg, Stefan LU (2010) STVM01 20101
Department of Political Science
Abstract (Swedish)
Distinctive new features of the Egyptian bureaucracy have followed the process of economic liberalization and privatization that began in 1991. The Egyptian bureaucracy is excessively large and suffers from inefficiencies and low capacity, but dealing with prioritized policy areas, such as privatization, experts have been recruited to so called “Technical Offices” that are closely tied to the cabinet ministers. This study is twofold. First, it asks if the “Technical Office for Privatization” qualifies as a merit-based bureaucracy. When it is determined that indeed it does, it is contrasted to the regular bureaucracy and a process of meritocratization is identified. Second, from two different rational choice models four theoretical... (More)
Distinctive new features of the Egyptian bureaucracy have followed the process of economic liberalization and privatization that began in 1991. The Egyptian bureaucracy is excessively large and suffers from inefficiencies and low capacity, but dealing with prioritized policy areas, such as privatization, experts have been recruited to so called “Technical Offices” that are closely tied to the cabinet ministers. This study is twofold. First, it asks if the “Technical Office for Privatization” qualifies as a merit-based bureaucracy. When it is determined that indeed it does, it is contrasted to the regular bureaucracy and a process of meritocratization is identified. Second, from two different rational choice models four theoretical hypotheses viewing meritocratization as a process of reduced patronage-based recruitment are derived. These are tested in the case of the Egyptian privatization, resulting in the conclusion that meritocratization represented by the Technical Offices can be explained by a change in the value of bureaucracy as a channel of patronage, a change in prioritized political constituencies to the new private sector, and changing potential benefits of providing public goods to attract domestic and international investments. These changes have in turn lead to a shift in the respective patronage and merit equilibria. (Less)
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author
Söderberg, Stefan LU
supervisor
organization
course
STVM01 20101
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
Patronage, Egyptian bureaucracy, Technical Office, Meritocratization, Privatization
language
English
id
1608423
date added to LUP
2010-06-29 13:17:43
date last changed
2010-06-29 13:17:43
@misc{1608423,
  abstract     = {Distinctive new features of the Egyptian bureaucracy have followed the process of economic liberalization and privatization that began in 1991. The Egyptian bureaucracy is excessively large and suffers from inefficiencies and low capacity, but dealing with prioritized policy areas, such as privatization, experts have been recruited to so called “Technical Offices” that are closely tied to the cabinet ministers. This study is twofold. First, it asks if the “Technical Office for Privatization” qualifies as a merit-based bureaucracy. When it is determined that indeed it does, it is contrasted to the regular bureaucracy and a process of meritocratization is identified. Second, from two different rational choice models four theoretical hypotheses viewing meritocratization as a process of reduced patronage-based recruitment are derived. These are tested in the case of the Egyptian privatization, resulting in the conclusion that meritocratization represented by the Technical Offices can be explained by a change in the value of bureaucracy as a channel of patronage, a change in prioritized political constituencies to the new private sector, and changing potential benefits of providing public goods to attract domestic and international investments. These changes have in turn lead to a shift in the respective patronage and merit equilibria.},
  author       = {Söderberg, Stefan},
  keyword      = {Patronage,Egyptian bureaucracy,Technical Office,Meritocratization,Privatization},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Islands of Merit- Explaining Partial “Meritocratization” in the Egyptian Bureaucracy},
  year         = {2010},
}