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Administrative Reform Adoption and Implementation: The Influence of Global and Local Institutional Forces

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image of Journal of Developing Societies

There is a pervasive notion that global public administration systems are moving towards common norms and standards that will eventually lead to efficiency, effectiveness, and good governance. Using the case of civil service reforms that were adopted by the Zimbabwean government in 1991, this study shows that such perception is too optimistic. The study found that, in the Zimbabwean case, the adoption and implementation of these global norms and standards was constrained by local institutions that are associated with the country's unique history. Theoretically, this finding challenges the simplistic notions about global integration and transcendence in public administration. Practically, it reveals the need for reform prescriptions to achieve synergistic support between international standards and norms and local institutions.


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