Salvatore Vassallo Federico Toth

Curable Pathologies? An Exercise of Diagnostic Analysis of Bureaucracies

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The identification of bureaucratic «dysfunctions» or «pathologies» is a recurrent objective in public administration studies. This article consists in an organizational «check up» of the Emilia-Romagna Region, with the aim of detecting possible dysfunctions within the regional organization. Our analysis leads to the diagnosis of 5 different pathologies: 1) Ageing workforce and low executive turnover; 2) Formalistic and self-referential performance evaluation procedures; 3) Under-utilization of spaces and dispersion of regional sites; 4) Under-used ICT infrastructures; 5) Dispersion of strategic functions on a plurality of general directions, and lack of an effective «steering cabin». It's the opinion of the authors that these five pathologies are - to a large extent - curable. The article therefore provides concrete proposals on how the Emilia-Romagna Region could remedy these malfunctions.


  • Italian Regions
  • Public Management
  • Bureaucracy
  • Public Administration
  • Bureaucratic Pathologies


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