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Sharpening the sword of state: building executive capacities in the public services of the Asia-Pacific

Leadership Public sector Public servants Public service Australia New Zealand China Macau Hong Kong Japan Philippines Korea (South) Singapore Taiwan

Governments around the world invest considerable resources in enhancing the capabilities of their civil service administrations with the intention of improving the quality and e ectiveness of public administration. While most developed and many developing nations have established professional bureaucracies that are, in Weberian terms, strong on procedural operations (consistency, routine, compliance and due diligence), they are also now facing huge challenges as governments increasingly require their administrative organs to be more managerial, perhaps more business-like, externally oriented and client-focused, and responsive to changing needs and priorities of government and society. Governments are also acutely aware that they now operate in a rapidly changing world, a globalised environment, where nations are increasingly interconnected and impacting upon each other in various ways. In these turbulent and uncertain times, governments have realised that they require higher level leadership, strategic and analytical skills within their bureaucracies to better steer the ship of state.

This monograph explores the various ways in which 10 jurisdictions in the Asia-Pacific enhance their administrative capabilities through training and executive development.

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