Bureaucracy and Service Delivery

Forthcoming 2017, Annual Review of Political Science

20 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2016 Last revised: 2 Apr 2017

Thomas B. Pepinsky

Cornell University - Department of Government

Jan Pierskalla

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Political Science

Audrey Sacks

World Bank

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 21, 2016

Abstract

This essay reviews the literature on the politics of bureaucracy in the developing world, with a focus on service delivery and bureaucratic performance. We survey classic topics and themes such as the developmental state, principal-agent relations, and the efficient grease hypothesis, and link them to new research findings in political science, sociology, and economics. We identify the concept of embeddedness as an important yet still underexplored framework that cuts across disciplines and which may be used to understand bureaucratic performance and service delivery. Looking forward, we outline a framework for conceptualizing bureaucratic action by exploiting variation across time, space, task, and client, and identify promising areas for further research on the bureaucrat-citizen encounter in developing countries.

Keywords: embeddedness, civil servants, street-level bureaucrats, developmental state, principal-agent relations

Suggested Citation

Pepinsky, Thomas B. and Pierskalla, Jan and Sacks, Audrey, Bureaucracy and Service Delivery (June 21, 2016). Forthcoming 2017, Annual Review of Political Science. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2798912 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2798912

Thomas B. Pepinsky (Contact Author)

Cornell University - Department of Government ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14853
United States

Jan Pierskalla

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Political Science ( email )

Columbus, OH 43210
United States

Audrey Sacks

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Paper statistics

Downloads
331
Rank
73,959
Abstract Views
774