A Framework for the Self-Evaluation of the Functioning of Public Institutions: Incentive Towards an Increased Quality or Merely a Formality?

Sorin Dan ŞANDOR

Abstract


Public administration can no longer ignore quality. Total Quality Management is trying to change the philosophy of the area. There are many TQM-inspired tools that can help this process: quality (or excellence) awards, ISO standards, Common Assessment Framework (CAF). CAF is a tool developed by the European Union in order to assess the capacity of public institutions to produce quality. Comprised of two main dimensions, enablers and results, nine criteria and 27 sub-criteria, the instrument allows a self-evaluation of the state of a specific institution. Romania intends to apply this framework in public administration. We have tried to see how this can work and several problems did occur: essential ingredients are missing – mainly systematic planning and performance measurement. Beside this, subjectivity and lack of commitment and knowledge can undermine such assessments. Romanian Public Administration Reform Strategy needs to start from the beginning, involving the entire organization towards quality, planning, developing and improving constantly performance measurement systems, without those being impossible to speak of quality management.


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