OECD Working Papers on Public Governance

Very interesting report on "Leadership for a high performing civil service" was shared by our partner - Public Governance Directorate, OECD.

Leaders are defined as the highest level representatives of civil service, who are responsible for managing and improving public functions. They provide political orientation of strategic documents and state programs, main aim of which is a health, safety and economic viability of citizens. However, leaders shall have both necessary skills and institutional support to help them achieve their goals and function effectively.  

Special feature of the report is a disclosure of 14 principles of civil service dedicated to specific goals solutions, which include recommendations on developing leadership skills for formation of innovation policy. These principles are the results of work of 10 OECD Member States Group. Research conducted in the period from 2017-2019 was based on 9 cases that arose during discussion of problems in the field of central administration management in a number of countries. Research of those cases is devoted to the following two topics:

  • Leadership capability (skills, competencies and management model) to respond to complex challenges 
  • Policies, processes and tools needed to develop those capabilities and support senior civil servants 

9 cases presented by foreign practice are collected from international experience of Finland, Ireland, France, Australia, Canada, Israel, the Netherlands, Estonia and Korea.

3 categories were identified as fundamental elements of this research that form the basis of public service work in the future: 1) forward looking, 2) flexible and 3) fulfilling.

The next distinguishing feature of the report is the definition and disclosure of 4 leadership capabilities necessary for solving complex government tasks:

OECD experts also analyzed innovative skills model based on 6 elements that have to be implemented in the process of training leaders. At the same time, Report developers stipulate that CSC do not need to master the following skills – it will be enough if they are optimally used.

The paper concludes with recommendations to help governments take a systematic approach to the development and management of their public service leaders, moreover, readers have opportunity to take a test that contains key components of each section of the report.

Click here to access the paper.

More OECD Working Papers on Public Governance are available on the website of the OECD Library. 


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