The proposed study is a continuation of previous work on the analysis of optimal models for managing a democratic state, published in the given journal in 2021. The research question is the concept of Expert Quality Control of the Government Policy (EQCP) developed at Moscow International University under the leadership of Makhaev Mairbeck Ruslanovich. EQCP is positioned as a way to improve the quality and efficiency of government in current conditions. In the previous article, our concept was called PES (an abbreviation for the English name of the model – Power of Expert Networks), but we believe that the name "EQCP" is the most appropriate. EQCP is the outcome of an interdisciplinary study conducted at the intersection of several scientific disciplines (political science, political philosophy, theory of state and law, economic theory, history, theory of state and municipal government). In accordance with the principles, new schemes (models) for the formation of public authorities and control over their activities are proposed, which involve the active participation of expert communities in the process – models of expert control. A brief overview of the most common concepts of public administration is given, their shortcomings are identified, and definitions of key concepts are given. The team of authors invites colleagues to a constructive discussion and join the development of EQCP within the framework of joint international scientific collaborations.
The search for optimal models of public administration to improve its quality and efficiency is an urgent task at the present stage of human evolution.
As noted at the XXIII World Congress of the International Association of Political Science “Challenges of Contemporary Governance”, which took place in Montreal in 2014, “the evolution of modern governance and its comprehension is taking place in connection with the numerous challenges and contradictions of social growth in the context of globalization” (IPSA, 2014).
The above trends increase the requirements for the quality and efficiency of public administration, which is emphasized in the Sustainable Development Goals formulated by the UN General Assembly (SDGS, 2015).
The World Bank Group report “Governance and the Law” emphasizes that the issue of measures to improve living conditions is closely related to the issue of improving public administration (Kim, 2017).
Various concepts (models) of public administration have been developed in contemporary political science: the concept of a virtual state, the interactive concept of public administration, the concept of “cooperative power”, NPM, “Good Governance”, and etc.
The most common are the concepts of “New Public Management” (NPM) and “Good Governance” (“good/quality management”).
The concept of NPM was created by scientists in the early 1990s in order to “structure the scientific discussion about modern changes in the organization and management of the executive power” (Barzelay, 2002, p. 47) and was a theoretical understanding of administrative reforms carried out in the 1980s-1990s of the 20th century in the states of Europe, North America, and Australia.
Actually, NPM is not a single concept of public administration. It is “a combination of proposals for public administration reform around the idea of bringing management in the public sector closer to the methods adopted in the business environment” (Irhin, 2017, p. 33).
The concept of “Good Governance” as a governance model was formed in 1997 in the World Development Report "The State in a Changing World", which puts forward the thesis that both the concept of the state dominant role and the minimalist approach to the state are equally extreme positions. This was evidenced by such events as the dismantling of the administrative-command system in the republics of the USSR and the countries of Eastern Europe, on the one hand, and the “economic miracle” in the countries of East Asia, as a result of the state dominant role, on the other. “...The determinant of these opposite outcomes is the state effectiveness” (Worldbank-russia, 1997).
The concept of Good Governance emphasizes that the state apparatus is the center of social and economic growth "... not as a direct source of evolution, but as a partner, catalyst and assistant" (Worldbank-russia, 1997).
The normative ideals of "Good Governance" have been embodied in The Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI), which reflect the quality and public administration efficiency (http://govindicators.org/). WGI is the research outcome by the World Bank Institute and the Research Department of the World Bank.
The concept of “Good Governance” is also detailed in the works.
Critics fairly point out the incorrectness of the mechanical transfer of management methods from the private sector to the public administration.
The emphasis of NPM on the transfer of “market” mechanisms to the practice of public administration raises the question of the introducing NPM possibility in countries with an undeveloped market infrastructure (it is known that the concept of NPM itself grew on the basis of a generalization of reform experience in countries with developed market economies).
A number of researchers have concluded that certain NPM parameters are not applicable to developing countries (Manning, 2001; Minogue, 2001; Polidano, 2001).
An attempt in the concept of NPM to severely limit the bureaucracy is, in our opinion, extreme. We agree with the position of E. Grey and B. Jenkins that “it is desirable that the most interesting aspects of public administration, such as decentralization, deregulation and delegation of authority, be combined with the essential principles of the traditional model of public administration and civil service: centralization, coordination and control” (Grey & Jenkins, 1995, p. 8).
The remarks of D. Ormond and E. Loeffler regarding the value priorities of NPM are also fair: “These should not be only economic values. We should be equally interested in the legal and political aspects of administrative management” (Ormond & Loeffler, 2006).
Russian scientists from Moscow International University have developed a new concept of public administration – the concept of Expert Quality Control of the Government Policy (EQCP), aimed at improving the government management efficiency, as well as increasing the quality of government decisions in the 21st century.
The EQCP concept is the outcome of interdisciplinary social research (political philosophy, theory of state and municipal government, theory of law, political science, system analysis, etc.).
Its general philosophical base is analytical philosophy, as a style of scientific and philosophical thinking, aimed at the accuracy and clarity of the concepts used in reasoning, the soundness of philosophical judgments and conclusions, and a negative attitude towards speculative generalizations.
The research question is the concept of Expert Quality Control of the Government Policy – EQCP.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of the paper is to reveal the concept foundations of Expert Quality Control of the Government Policy – EQCP).
We emphasize that this concept was called PES (an abbreviation for the English name of the model – Power of Expert Networks) in a paper published in the given journal last year (Makhaev & Yakhyaev, 2021).
Since then, we have adjusted the name of the concept.
We believe that “EQCP” is the most reasonable and acceptable name for our concept.
The research was conducted applying both traditional and modern scientific methods (historical, systemic, structural-functional, and comparative).
Scientific papers, monographs, and dissertations, which set out various concepts of public administration, as well as various international regulations, resolutions, memorandums, and constitutional drafts, were the research empirical material.
The EQCP defines public administration as a process of systematic interaction of state and non-state subjects of government in the development and implementation of state policy within the framework of the adopted legislation, which includes: a) effective mechanisms for the formation of public authorities b) effective mechanisms for monitoring the activities of public authorities.
A set of public authorities endowed with power and managing social processes and relations is understood under the subjects of government management.
Accordingly, non-state actors of government management are representatives of civil society, which are defined in many Constitutions as the bearers of sovereignty and the highest source of power.
In accordance with the principle of democracy, the dominant role in this interaction belongs to non-state actors of government management.
The power of non-state actors of government management is exercised directly or through state and municipal authorities.
The highest expression of the direct power of non-state actors of government management is a referendum and elections.
Election is a legalized form of people's will, in which power is delegated to state authorities, local governments, and their officials.
The task of the election campaign for certain political forces is as follows: to convince voters that only they can solve the urgent issues of a particular region or state as a whole.
It is fundamentally crucial for us to emphasize something else: the fact is that the voter is not a specialist in all spheres of society (economics and finance, ecology, culture, education, international politics, industry, housing and communal services, and etc.), while political forces offer various programs and strategies for their development.
Thus, the voter is not able to evaluate at a professional level the election programs and the outcomes of their implementation, published in the reports of officials (for example, deputy reports or reports of officials).
It is required to change the mechanisms for the public authorities’ formation and the mechanisms for regular control over their activities.
We offer new efficient models for the formation of public authorities and regular monitoring of their activities within the framework of the EQCP concept.
The basic principles of the EQCP are:
a) the principle of meritocracy: government is the prerogative of highly qualified specialists.
The given principle applies to all subjects of state administration: both employees of state bodies (officials, deputies, judges), and representatives of civil society – voters.
b) the principle of new justice: everyone does his own thing in a just state, that is, what he is well versed in, what corresponds to his spiritual qualities (in modern terms, he is a professional) and at the same time does not interfere with other people's affairs.
c) the principle of regular examination: in a fair and smart state, the “will of the people” is expressed in systematic expert and analytical activities, both at the stage of government bodies formation and at the control stage over their activities.
The new scheme of relations between non-state and state actors of government management is built on the basis of the above principles – the relationship of expert control, the functions of which are assigned to a special group of experts separated from civil society – experts united in expert communities on a thematic basis.
The participation of expert communities at the stage of government bodies’ formation will be carried out in the examination form of election programs of political forces (as part of the electoral process), assessment of their human resources, and etc.
The participation of experts at the control stage over the authorities’ activities is carried out in the form of periodic (for example, annual) examination (monitoring) of the activity effectiveness by developing and improving evaluation criteria and methods (method of expert assessments, expert analysis, brainstorming, peer review, and etc.).
For instance, specialists in the field of science and education form appropriate expert communities to control the development and implementation of state policy in the field of science and education (Table 01).
Expert communities will become independent, permanent collegiate bodies formed in accordance with the legislation on expert activities, organizing and providing expert and analytical activities in the interests of citizens.
Four models of expert control relations are possible, depending on the position occupied by expert communities in the decision-making system.
1) In accordance with model “A”, expert communities occupy a crucial position in the decision-making system (decisive position).
The expert opinion becomes the final basis for the candidate’s victory in the elections, as well as for his removal from his position in the event of a negative expertise.
2) In accordance with model “B”, the decision-making center is an ordinary voter, and not expert communities, that is, the victory of candidates in elections is traditionally achieved if they gain the largest number of votes.
Actually, the model embodies the classical scheme of democracy, supplemented by the work of expert communities.
Expert opinions in model “B” are advisory in nature; they give voters some clarity about the prospects of the election programs of candidates and parties (how realistic and achievable the given indicators are, what is the personnel potential of the candidate or party, and etc.), as well as about the reports of elected persons (how the program has been implemented).
Since the decisive position belongs to the ordinary voter, model “B” is “weak”, incorrect, because it violates such basic principles as the principle of meritocracy and the principle of new justice.
Accordingly, model “A” is a “strong”, correct model, since it fully complies with all the basic principles of the EQCP concept.
In addition to models “A” and “B”, our concept includes intermediate, partially correct models “C” and “D.”
3) In accordance with model “C”, state authorities are traditionally formed in general democratic elections based on the outcomes of voting, but the control functions of over the activities of elected officials are assigned to experts.
4) In accordance with the “D” model, on the contrary, experts (make decisions) dominate at the stage of formation of government bodies, and at the stage of control over their activities, power belongs to the ordinary voter.
The EQCP concept offers the following definition of the expert.
An expert is a person who has qualifications and experience in a certain field of activity, attracted by the customer in order to conduct expert and analytical research and produce expert opinions on issues whose solution requires the use of special knowledge and skills.
As noted above, experts are combined into groups (communities) in accordance with the areas of activity in which they are qualified specialists.
Thus, expert communities are the highest expert institutions for the production and coordination of expert and analytical research (expertise) conducted in strategic areas of state policy in accordance with the agreement on the implementation of mechanisms for expert quality control of state policy.
The civil society as a whole (ordinary voter) acts as the customer of expert-analytical research, which concludes an agreement (contract) with expert communities on the introduction of expert control mechanisms into the political system of the country (in particular, into the electoral system).
The specific parameters of the agreement – its validity period, the obligations of the parties, the powers of experts are determined by NGSU in the course of a general national deliberation and can be subsequently approved by referendum.
Expert-analytical research (hereinafter referred to as expertise) is an activity for the analysis and quantitative assessment of certain objects, the results of which are drawn up in the form of expert opinions.
The objects of expertise in our case are a) target indicators reflected in the election programs of candidates for public office and political parties, which are evaluated for their real feasibility, expediency, relevance; personnel potential (at the stage of formation of authorities) b) reports on the activities’ outcomes of elected officials (at the stage of control over the authorities’ activities).
The next publication will describe the procedures for the formation and functioning of expert communities.
The paper proposes the concept definition of public administration as a process of systemic interaction between state and non-state actors of government management on the development and high-quality implementation of state policy in various areas of society within the framework of the adopted legislation.
A crucial component of the management actors’ interaction is, on the one hand, the mechanism for the public authorities’ formation (executive, legislative and judicial) and, on the other hand, the mechanism for monitoring the activities of elected officials, the presence of which is also an indispensable element of the system of these relations.
Both mechanisms must function constantly: the mechanism for the formation of authorities, no matter how effective it is, is depreciated without a mechanism for regular monitoring.
A new scheme of relations between the actors of management – relations of expert control is proposed in the concept of EQCP in accordance with the principles of meritocracy, new justice and regular expertise.
Depending on the experts' position in the decision-making system, four models of expert control are distinguished, where only model “A” is “strong”, completely correct, since it corresponds to all basic principles of the EQCP concept.
Model “B” is “weak”, incorrect, because it violates such basic principles as the principle of meritocracy and the principle of new justice.
Models “C” and “D” are partially correct.
The authors of EQCP will be grateful to all colleagues for constructive criticism of the developed concept.
The authors also consider the possibility of creating an international scientific collaboration, in which EQCP can be developed in synthesis with other management concepts.
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23 December 2022
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Makhaev, M. R., Yakhyaev, M. Y., Saidov, A. A., Gadzhiev, M. M., Shamsuev, M., & Mazhiev, K. K. (2022). Expert Quality Control Of Government Policy (Eqcp) – Optimal Model Of Public Administration. In D. K. Bataev, S. A. Gapurov, A. D. Osmaev, V. K. Akaev, L. M. Idigova, M. R. Ovhadov, A. R. Salgiriev, & M. M. Betilmerzaeva (Eds.), Knowledge, Man and Civilization- ISCKMC 2022, vol 129. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 713-720). European Publisher. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2022.12.92