New directions for public management
Consideration of the roles to be played by the public and private sectors in a country's development strategy naturally leads to an analysis of the public sector's main orientations regarding both its own actions and the establishment of a regulatory framework for the performance of certain types of activities. These orientations are expressed through public policies, i.e., the courses of action followed by the public sector in pursuance of a more or less well-defined objective. The administration, made up of the various government ministries and departments, is what provides the institutional underpinnings for this sector's direct and indirect participation in the development strategy. Viewing the matter from another vantage point, we can say that public policies are being implemented when the public sector's management of material and non-material resources is done in such a way as to move the country in the direction indicated by those policies. If the public sector's participation in the development strategy is to be evaluated on the basis of its results, then such management is the main link in the chain. It is management that determines the concrete expression of the selected courses of action, and their outcome will depend on its effectiveness and efficiency. The following article seeks to provide some guidelines for the reform of public management as it relates to policy design, the need for various types of institutional changes, more efficient expenditure patterns and improved human resources management, more widespread use of certain management tools and mechanisms, attention to and satisfaction of the needs of consumers, the management of public enterprises and modalities for their privatization and regulation, and the refinement of policy overseeing and evaluation functions.