rss_2.0NISPAcee Journal of Public Administration and Policy FeedSciendo RSS Feed for NISPAcee Journal of Public Administration and Policy Journal of Public Administration and Policy Feed the Need to Include Passive Citizens in Public Participation Processes<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Research on enhancing public participation has increasingly concentrated on using novel instruments to collect opinions of citizens in order to inform the decision-maker about preferred policies. This paper argues that these hardly contribute to the achievement of the classic political-philosophical ideals of citizen involvement if only already active citizens become involved and passive ones remain excluded. Based on the newest European Value Study, this paper first proposes a measure to distinguish between passive and active citizens. It shows that passive citizens do have particular background characteristics in terms of age, education, and poverty. Compared to active citizens, they also adhere to different values as seen in their high adherence to materialistic values, the absence of interpersonal trust, and the much lesser importance attached by them to tolerance and respect. The conclusion is that just collecting opinions through the use of social media and polling, and calling this participation 2.0 or “light” participation, as is proposed nowadays, fails to contribute to the original goals of public participation.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Medicine Users to Handle Unused Medicines Correctly (a Study of the Czech Republic and the Slovak republic)<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This paper on the case of the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic examines the effect of information nudging on changing the behavior of medicine users with unused medicines. We introduce a new concept of nudge into the theory as an explanatory tool used in the form of subsumption. In our explanatory model, explanans represents the initial conditions of research (C). The explanatory theory of ET is nudge theory. Explanandum E is the explained phenomena. The initial conditions consist of two classes of conditions - namely, C0 and C1. The C0 conditions are those conditions that characterize the state where drug users (respondents) act without the information provided by us. C1 conditions are those states where we provide boring information to the medicine users in the form of a leaflet on how to dispose of unused medicines. We examine how the conditions change the behavior of users (respondents) based on the change in the behavior of users (respondents). Empirical analysis shows that nudging in the form of additional information has a positive effect on behavior. Respondents who received additional information in the information campaign about the proper handling of medicines showed a 23.4% increase in the declared return of unused medicines (condition Cl) compared to condition C0 when no nudging was done. We find that respondents who check the expiry date are more likely to hand in medicines at the pharmacy. The more information people have about how to manage unused and expired medicines, the more medicines are returned to the pharmacy. Similarly, people who have enough information return unused and expired medicines to the pharmacy. Therefore, nudging in the form of additional information can be seen as an appropriate public policy tool to increase the effective management of unused medicines.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of Public Administration Scientific Research in the Visegrad Countries – A Bibliometric Analysis<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>As a discipline in its own right, public administration has a variety of interpretations in European countries, which can be found at the intersection of three traditional disciplines: law, policy and management. The Central European region, such as the Visegrad countries (Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia), is of particular interest for the analysis of the state of public administration research, as it only came to the fore after the change of regime. The present study undertakes a bibliometric analysis of the publications in the field of public administration in these countries for the period 2011-2020. The publications studied were indexed in the Scopus citation database, and the tools used for the analysis were the Sci Val research support platform and the vosViewer bibliometric analysis software. The results show the different orientations, with Hungarian and Polish authors approaching the discipline from a legal perspective, while Czech and Slovak authors take a management perspective. Regional journals and conference publications dominate in terms of publication places. In terms of co-authorship, regional partners also stand out, while cooperation with Western European countries takes the form of fewer but better cited publications.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue and Retrograde Approach to the Study of Social Phenomena and Public Administration<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The author of the study presents a new approach to the study of dynamic changes in society. He calls it the historical-evolutionist and retrograde approach. The historical-evolutionist approach is based on the existence of the ontology of the problem. It is based on the reality of evolution. This approach makes it possible to reveal on the historical-evolutionary trajectory the key events (factors) that influenced the historical development and to retrospectively identify their historical significance. On the historical-evolutionary trajectory, we can retrogradely trace various events such as: a node on the trajectory, and a breaking point on an evolutionary trajectory, evolution path branching. disruption, dead end, evolutionary island, embedded history, as well as a form of retrograde revealed possible worlds. These concepts are then demonstrated on the example of the history of public administration in the Czech Republic.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Great Recession of 2008 from the Subjective Well-being Perspective: Implication for Policy-making in the EU Countries<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Literature review implies that despite the Great Recession of 2008 the economic policy paradigm continues to prevail in assessing and measuring the well-being in the EU countries. This means that the institutional goals and the follow-up policies also tend to favor economic over non-economic objectives. This paper examines to what extent the Great Recession has increased or decreased the influence of economic factors on subjective well-being and the implications for policy-making. Regression analysis of subjective well-being data from 2006, 2011, and 2016 from 16 countries from the European Union shows that the influence of economic factors on subjective well-being is stronger than before the Great Recession in the majority of the analyzed countries. It has also revealed that satisfaction with one’s standard of living is a much stronger predictor of subjective well-being than the overall economic situation.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Transformation of Slovenian Urban Municipalities: A Quantitative Report on the Impact of Municipality Population Size on Digital Maturity<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Rapid technological progress and its concomitant need for new skills, ways of working and collaborating, paired with dynamic socio-economic change, have highlighted the main challenge facing Europe’s urban municipalities. Being the part of the public sector closest to citizens and their needs, the challenge addresses digital transformation’s goals to support and promote broader growth in the digital domain optimally and to realise digital transformation benefits such as user-friendly and citizen-centred services, increased quality of life and better business environments. Urban municipalities must identify local strengths, priorities and needs, including performance and digital maturity assessment, and define strategic goals and implementation roadmaps to implement digital transformation optimally. Furthermore, they must increase city administration, decision-maker and citizens awareness of the opportunities and benefits digitally enabled solutions offer.</p> <p>A comprehensive digital maturity self-assessment is the first step towards successful digital transformation. An example of a framework for such an assessment is the framework of the European Commission’s Intelligent Cities Challenge (ICC), the EU’s bespoke support programme for coaching, facilitation and inspiration, and successor to its Digital Cities Challenge. Therefore, the objective of our research was to analyse the digital maturity self-assessment results undertaken by eleven Slovenian urban municipalities utilising ICC’s assessment methodology framework for government services and social connectivity, which includes indicators sets of digitising public services, digital connectivity and open data. We further focused on the potential impact of municipality population size on its digital maturity. According to the existing research, this is one of the significant potential explanatory factors why municipalities differ in terms of digital transformation implementation and adaptation.</p> <p>One would <italic>a priori</italic> expect larger municipalities to be digitally more mature than smaller ones because they have more resources at their disposal, however, our results prove that this is not the complete picture. There is, however, a relationship between municipality population size and digital maturity, including indicators of open data sharing and security, but not entirely in the manner expected. Furthermore, our analysis has shown that municipality population size does not influence overall digital maturity but individual digital maturity indicators, highlighting the need to develop more detailed and accurate individual digital maturity indicators. Although the influence of municipality population size on overall digital maturity could not be demonstrated, its partial influence on individual sets is essential when endeavouring to achieve efficient digital transformation.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Public Administration in Sunlight and Shadow: Theory and Practice<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The combination of theoretical principles and centuries-old, yet still functional, practices and institutions that together form the Islamic paradigm of public administration (PA) have customarily been absent from both academic literature and PA reform policies, not least in the NISPAcee region. With, e. g., the arrival of <italic>Peter’s Administrative Traditions</italic> last year, however, Islamic PA has now been positioned within the mainstream, that is, recognized as a legitimate, contextually relevant alternative to the global-Western paradigm. Accordingly, this article aims to further delineate the Islamic PA tradition by discussing its positionality and significance within Non-Western PA, surveying its normative principles, exploring a set of contemporary case studies in Turkey, Uzbekistan, and Morocco, and concluding with a broader reflection on the importance of contextuality and heterogeneity for good PA.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Public Participation of Civic Initiative Groups during the Covid-19 Pandemic in Romania. An Exploration of Public Participation Definitions, Obstacles, and Opportunities<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The COVID-19 pandemic has brought significant changes to the daily lives of citizens, their interactions with their communities, the nongovernmental sector and the public administration, as well as threatening the continuity of the civic initiatives they had developed. This paper draws on the scientific literature on public participation and uses qualitative methods of inquiry (semi-structured interviews) to explore how external factors, in this case the COVID-19 pandemic, affected the public participation of citizens organised in civic initiative groups in Bucharest, Romania. One key contribution of the study pertains to the interplay between practice and the conceptual level of public participation. In this respect, the results showed that many members of civic group perceive it to be genuinely contradictory in practice in their definitions of public participation. However, their ideal visions of public participation in genuine democratic politics are markedly collaborative. The research showed that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on civic groups has been quite limited, adding obstacles to public participation but also enabling opportunities. In particular, it can be concluded that the pandemic has exacerbated pre-existing challenges. It should also be noted that co-creation of public services can be defined by a certain level of continuity, especially in the case of civic groups that were involved in co-initiation.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Dilapidated Municipal Cultural Property: The Role of NPOs in Its Restoration and Urban Design<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Using the example of the Slovak Republic as a post-communist country and its city of Banská Bystrica, this article deals with the dilapidated municipal cultural property which was transferred from the state to the municipalities after the fall of communism in 1989. The long period of disorganization and public administration reforms has left many municipalities with abandoned infrastructures that have not found a new role in the globalized economy. Non-profits often substitute the public sector, especially in the provision of public services where the public sector has a lack of financial and/or organizational capacities and no or very little experience to tackle a specific issue, e.g., handling the abandoned cultural objects that were left to rot. The aim of the article is to investigate the regeneration of the unused property initiated by NPOs. We use retrograde analysis to investigate the impact of social innovation on unused properties. We examine the historical trajectory of individual cases and show what results have been achieved by social innovations. Using multi-case studies and interviews with stakeholders of the non-profits involved, the role of non-profits in the restoration of dilapidated cultural property and its return to use by citizens is examined and conclusions are drawn: non-profits bring social innovations in improving the urban design by saving dilapidated historical and cultural objects.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Institutionalization Be Considered a Trap in Defining Functional Cross-border Areas? Coopetition and Local Public Services in Borderlands<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Cross-border cooperation can be an example of a non-hierarchical co-governance tool based on the principle of multi-level governance, which was successfully implemented mainly thanks to European integration as part of building EU territorial cohesion. As a new tool, it has not been limited by the experience of public administration organizations to date, and it is largely based on coopetition aimed at more effective co-management of border regions. Within the framework of this paper, we are exploring the new point of view in the debate on functional cross-border areas. In the first part of the paper, we shall move towards the establishment of multi-level governance (MLG) and re-analyze the adequacy of this concept in line with the general scientific discourse of functional cross-border areas. In the next part, on the basis of desk research and analyses of public policy, the tools and forms for MLG research as well as their implementation were identified and compared on the national and cross-border levels. In the last part of the case study from the Czech-Polish border, we identify the determinants for the organization and implementation of cross-border public services as a basis for defining cross-border areas functional for fire protection in the Jesenik District (CZ).</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Streams Framework as Scientific Research Program and Tool for the Analysis of Public Policy Issues<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The Multiple Streams Framework (MSF) is currently one of the most widely used frameworks in policy process research. It explains how policy agenda develops in the policy process with emphasis on policy adoption. This article examines MSF from the perspective of the history of science and Lakatos’ methodology of scientific research programs. In this respect, we consider MSF a “semi-strong theory” that uses a form of subsumption under theory for scientific explanation. This differs from a “strong” explanatory theory (e.g., physics), which uses explanations in the form of subsumption under scientific law. From the point of view of Lakatos’ methodology, MSF represents a scientific research program.</p> <p>The basic element is a hard core given mainly by the MSF hypothesis for the framework as a whole and MSF assumptions and key structural elements. Around the hard core there is a protective belt of auxiliary hypotheses. They correspond to hypotheses related to the framework’s key elements and to the hypothesis for the framework as a whole. MSF has negative heuristics (prohibition of the use of the modus tollens rule) and positive heuristics, which are represented by a set of theoretically and empirically progressive theories that further develop the MSF research program. An analysis of studies on MSF reveals that single hypotheses are only exceptionally tested using “hard” data and quantitative methods. Qualitative analysis (case studies) predominates, which contributes to the development of MSF theory. Therefore, we can consider a progressive shift in theory.</p> <p>In this respect, MSF can be considered a successful research program. However, in terms of the methodology of scientific research programs, MSF has a number of other opportunities to develop hypothesis testing further and use various modelling methods with data sets. Thus, MSF represents an interesting scientific research program, which needs to be further developed and specified in the spirit of the methodology of scientific research programs, It is a challenge for interdisciplinary research in the field of social sciences.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue’ Attitudes to Nudges in the Maintenance of Public Spaces and Waste Management<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Behavioural interventions, or nudges, can be seen in public policy as a tool to help local governments in a variety of areas. The main advantages of nudges include the low costs associated with their implementation and, on the other hand, the relatively high effect if the factors acting on individuals are correctly identified (e.g., the salience factor associated with the individual’s bias, social norms, or how the individual’s surroundings react). Before implementing a behavioural intervention, it is necessary to know, the motives or causes of the behaviour of the inhabitants in the city.</p> <p>The paper is specifically devoted to the nudges that can be implemented in the maintenance of public spaces and waste management. The aim of the paper is to find out the attitudes of citizens towards the problems in maintenance of public spaces and waste management caused by human behaviour as well as possible solutions in the form of selected types of nudges.</p> <p>The paper identified several reasons that can contribute to an increase the level of citizen participation in waste separation and improve the quality of maintenance of public spaces, such as where the nudging is implemented (factor of affect), attractiveness of the nudge (factor of silence) and the commitment of individuals. The selected behavioural interventions show that there is a willingness on the part of the citizens in a local municipality to accept nudges and the citizens tendency to change behaviour in the desired way.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue COVID-19 Pandemics and Politics<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This short editorial proposes a specific topic for comprehensive research in COVID-19 in the CEE area, namely the role of politicians and politics during the pandemic. The text includes three short country case studies (Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia), describing different aspects of the politics/political fighting relationship and the COVID-19 pandemic. The experts’ arguments suggest that the “motto of the day” should be working together and not fighting each other. However, nothing (“almost nothing”) like this is visible in our region – or at lease in our three case studies, the only positive aspect from this point of view is the joint call of all parliamentary group leaders for vaccination in Slovenia. By its content, the editorial calls for comprehensive research on the aims of the current antagonistic situation and possible actions.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of Municipal Performance-based Budgets within Strategic Planning in Slovakia: Perception of Elected Local Representatives<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The article aims to present the concept of performance-based budgeting at the local government level with a focus on its importance for strategic management at the local government level. The original intention of introducing programme budgeting, which is clearly linked to performance management and results, was to improve strategic-oriented public management, in particular by focusing on objectives and using performance information as well as performance measures. Much more attention has recently been paid to the importance and use of performance information and performance measures. Based on case studies, the authors analyse the significance of the performance information provided in the newly established performance budgets of municipalities, while the findings were supplemented by a perception of the current situation in the form of semi-structured interviews with elected representatives of selected local governments. The results of the article seek to highlight the advantages of implementing this concept, the appropriate ways and obstacles often encountered, and important recommendations for improving its use, summarised on the basis of more than a decade of experience since the introduction of this budgetary innovation on the basis of legislation as mandatory budgetary policy instruments in Slovakia for all self-governing regions and local governments in municipalities with more than 2,000 inhabitants. This leads to the conclusion of whether PBB, among other approaches, is an option or a real necessity for today’s economic challenges, but at the same time to the actual need for changes in the methodology of this strategic management tool at the local government level.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of Qualification and Working Conditions on Civil Servant Pay Levels in Russia<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The article is devoted to the assessment of qualification and working conditions which influence civil servant pay levels. The paper analyses two groups of measures: qualification and professionalism measures (e.g., level of education, work experience, etc.) and working conditions measures (e.g., work location, working hours, etc.). The empirical base of the research is the survey conducted by the Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTsIOM) in 2017. The results of the regression analysis show that there are distinctions in measures determining civil servants’ pay differentiation in comparison with the average pay in the economy and with the civil servants’ expected pay. Civil servant pay levels should be more explained by qualification and professionalism than it is now. The research results would be useful for the optimisation of the civil servant pay system in Russia.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of Sustainable Public Procurement in the Rail Transport in the Czech Republic and a Comparison with the Other Members of the Visegrad Group<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This paper focuses on sustainable public procurement (SPP) and its role in public procurement of the members of the Visegrad Group (Hungarian, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic). Sustainable public procurement is a current trend in public purchasing around the world. The European Union’s sustainable development policy, which respects the objectives of the 2030 Agenda, seeks to influence the public procurement policies of the members of the European Union. Every country, including the Visegard Group countries is trying to implement sustainable development criteria in its procurement process and to change legislation.</p> <p>The aim of this paper is to compare the implementation of public procurement in the Czech Republic with other members of the Visegrad Group (Poland, Slovakia, Hungary) and analyse how the public procurement (tenders) respects the criteria of sustainable public procurement in the case of the selected public procurements (tenders) in rail transport. We analyse the public procurement process and investigate the possibility/appropriateness of using social responsibility criteria in the individual phases of the procurement process (award criteria).</p> <p>The results show that there are different methods of implementing SPP in the V4 countries. There are significant differences between the regions. Based on the results of our research and analysis of the selected tenders, we concluded that the principle of social responsibility needs to be reflected in all steps, i.e. in the formulation of the subject of the public contract, the preparation of the contractual terms and the selection of evaluation criteria in their qualitative form.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Impact of Trust in Government – Young Voters’ Behavioral Intention to Use I-voting in Slovenia<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In order to create public value and meet the demands of the modern information society, governments and public administrations strongly rely on information technology and e-government, but its acceptance is significantly influenced by the level of citizens’ trust in government. This study explores the issue of citizens’ trust in government in relation to i-voting in Slovenia, a country with existing interest in i-voting but a low level of trust in government, especially among the young population. The authors analyze how such distrust impacts behavior intention towards i-voting, decomposing trust into a political component and an administrative component, and into local and state levels. Based on a modified version of the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology, the results of 194 respondents show that young student voters’ trust in politicians and electoral committees does not affect their intention to use i-voting. However, they trust the local level of government more than the state level, and electoral committees more than politicians.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Solid Waste Management in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Contracting waste management services is one of the most commonly used approaches to the delivery of this service and this topic is clearly in the focus of frequent academic research.</p> <p>The goal of this article is to examine trends in the area of solid waste collection and disposal on the municipal level for the Czech Republic and Slovakia in terms of developments over the past 20 years with a focus on the share of inter-municipal cooperation in the delivery of this service. In contrast to Western European countries, which are undergoing re-municipalization, the data obtained for Slovakia and the Czech Republic over 20 years show that the municipal solid waste management service is dominated by contracting, which has increased over the examined period. This fact is apparently a reflection of the high rate of fragmentation in municipal structures and the low willingness among municipalities to cooperate. The data obtained also indicate that using external suppliers seems to bring marginal savings that could certainly be substantially larger; potential increases in efficiency via contracting are unequivocally limited by the low quality of contract management. Regarding our core question, we found that the proportion of inter-municipal cooperation between service delivery modes did not significantly increase during the investigated period. The experts interviewed almost uniformly agreed on three critical limits related to the issue of inter-municipal cooperation in MSW management delivery – transaction costs of different types, non-existent regular comparisons of best solutions, and limited motivation to select optimal service delivery modes.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Effect of Academic Discipline on Policy Attitudes: The Case of Czech University Students<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>While the effect of academic discipline on political attitudes has long been acknowledged, much less is known on how disciplinary background affects policy attitudes. Linder and Peters (1992) argued that attitudes to policy instruments correspond with discipline: lawyers are assumed to tend to be partial to legalistic regulatory instruments, economists to favor economic tools such as loans or taxation. Nevertheless, relevant empirical evidence is almost non-existent. The paper attempts to bridge this gap by comparing policy instruments attitudes in different academic disciplines on a sample of Czech university students (N = 8820). We inquire whether students in different academic fields (with special emphasis on economics, law, education, political science, and mass media/journalism) differ in their political and policy views. In line with previous research, students pursuing economics and law (as well as education) are found to be more right-wing oriented than students of political science and mass media. Students also differ in terms of their overall acceptance of policy instruments, with those of political science being the most accepting of all types of instruments. However, we find little support for the correspondence thesis proposed by Linder and Peters.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of Administrative Appeal in Slovenia and Croatia – Between National Traditions and EU Standards<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The administrative appeal is a multifunctional legal remedy whose purpose is to protect the rights of the parties vis-à-vis the authorities and provide – through a generalisation of cases – a regulatory feedback loop leading to better sector-specific regulations. The administrative appeal is thus a constitutional guarantee of democratic governance, as well as mechanism of good administration and effective public policies, as long as it is implemented in line with the purpose of regulation. To examine the theoretical and regulatory objectives of the administrative appeal in Slovenia and Croatia and test its compliance with EU trends, a comparative analysis of the key provisions of the systemic laws on the general administrative procedure (APAs) was carried out. In such context, specific effectiveness criteria were developed, focusing on the admissibility, devolution and suspensiveness of the administrative appeal, as well as on the duration of the administrative appeal procedure. The achievement of the regulatory objectives of the APAs in both countries was further examined through interviews with experts in administrative procedural law and, for Slovenia, through an analysis of administrative case law. The finding suggest that the most challenging issues are the (non-)suspensiveness of the appeal and the duration of procedure. Hence, the administrative appeal may well be a fairly suitable safeguard of the constitutional rights of the parties in individual cases, but on a systemic level, its potential for good administration is not fully exploited. This instrument should therefore be further developed, e.g., through a mutatis mutandis application of the APA in all administrative acts and an even more consistent application in the most disputable administrative procedures, particularly in terms of the suspension of enforcement pending administrative finality and the still reasonably long procedures.</p> <p><bold>The key points for practitioners are:</bold> • The administrative appeal has various functions, such as protecting international and constitutional safeguards of the parties to the procedure and ensuring a coherent administrative-legal system; • In the EU, procedural issues in individual Member States can largely be regulated autonomously; however, there are certain characteristics necessary to define the appeal as an effective tool; • Slovenia and Croatia regulate the administrative procedure in a rather similar way, yet there are some crucial differences in effectiveness of the administrative appeal both in law and, particularly, in practice; • Experts, especially from the CEE region, can learn about the gap between theory and practice in the selected countries, which enables them to compare other similar national systems in line with the EU standards.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue