DP11078 Management of Bureaucrats and Public Service Delivery: Evidence from the Nigerian Civil Service

Author(s): Imran Rasul, Daniel Rogger
Publication Date: January 2016
Keyword(s): bureaucracy, management
JEL(s): J33, O20
Programme Areas: Development Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=11078

We study how the management practices bureaucrats operate under correlate to the quantity of public services delivered, using data from the Nigerian Civil Service. We have hand-coded independent engineering assessments of 4700 project completion rates. We supplement this with a management survey in the bureaucracies responsible for these projects, building on Bloom and Van Reenen [2007]. Management practices matter: increasing bureaucrats' autonomy is positively associated with completion rates, yet practices related to incentives/monitoring of bureaucrats are negatively associated with completion rates. Our evidence provides new insights on the importance of management in public bureaucracies in a developing country setting.