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Efficiency and Simplification of Administrative Procedures and Justice in the Western Balkans Zagreb, 29 -30 January 2014 Administrative Efficiency and Simplification of Administrative Procedures Professor Dr. Ivan Koprić
Administrative efficiency Why is it important? It is a leading value of administrative technology & procedures: legality + efficiency One of the main issues in PA doctrine, literature and practice for centuries - Cameralism: Polizei, Handlung, und Finanzwissenschaft; support to economic development - Taylorism: from individual & organisational efficiency to national efficiency - classic organisation theory: organisational principles for better efficiency - NPM: 3 Es, result orientation, quality of public services - Good governance: democratic and efficient administration - Economic crises and other key occasions can trigger pressures for efficiency: It contributes to national efficency and competitiveness Inclusion into the European Administrative Space asks for efficient and reliable administrative performance
Administrative efficiency What does it mean? It can be defined at the individual, organisational, and system (whole PA, or GAPA) level Ratio of output to input. Output = results; inputs = time, costs, efforts, etc. Productivity. Doing things (procedures) right, in appropriate manner; employing appropriate work techniques. Similar concepts: - economy (reducing cost to produce the same results; savings); - effectiveness (assessment of relevant environment; doing the right things, producing valuable and necessary outcomes, i. e. results that address the needs of society; Is the current concept of administrative procedures right for achieving important societal results? ) - GAPA efficiency: reducing complexity, duration, formalism and burdens to citizens, businesses, civil organisations, and others while still retaining legal functioning of the state
Administrative efficiency How can it be measured? In principle, it is measurable; it is a quantitative concept Hardships in measuring the efficiency of administrative procedures: - Adm. procedures are per definitionem process-oriented, not result -oriented - Procedures are conditional (not purposeful) work programmes, i. e. they have to stick with legally prescribed and standardised work steps - There is a space for blame-shifting (parties, competent bodies of first and second instance, administrative and/or other courts) - Results are easily observable and identifiable: time duration, satisfaction of a party to the procedure, administrative burden, legality of first instance decision, etc.
Administrative efficiency How can it be imposed? Depends on the level (individual, organisational, system); various instruments and techniques (strategic planning, performance management, contractual relations between ministries and agencies/providers, etc. ) Administrative procedures and efficiency a) Old approach: regulation of economy and efficiency as the legal principles of administrative procedures (Arts. 6 and 13, resp. , old Yugoslav GAPA) b) New approach: - improvements in technology and structure of Public Administration as well as in legal regulation of the GAPA which ensure better results with smaller input - systemic character of the new approach means that all improvements have been taken into account in a holistic and interdependent manner - Improvements have been identified in an analitic and scientific manner
a) New approach to efficiency of APs - - b) c) - Administrative technology (three main components) Material resources: IT revolution that enables e-governance Work techniques: serial interdependence – the next procedural step should follow the previous one and completing the previous step is a precondition for going further: streamlining, speeding up and simplifying procedural variations and steps (reducing the number of special procedures, case management, etc. ) Knowledge: information sharing, training and education (civil servants, judges) + public relations Structural and cultural innovations One-stop-shop (point of single contact) Dividing front office from back office Decentralisation of decision-making Building result-oriented organisational culture New legal institutes and innovative regulation of traditional ones e-communication, shortened deadlines, simplified mail communication, reducing possibilities for ping-pong effect, positive fiction, etc.
a) Legal situation and instruments for fostering PA efficiency • • European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (Co. E, esp. Art. 6) ECHR treats duration of administrative procedures as a part of duration of the whole procedure that needs to be compared with the standard of deciding within reasonable time frame (the right to have his/her affairs handled. . . within a reasonable time; Art. 41/1. EU Charter of Fundamental Rights) Necessity to establish two-level administrative justice system with oral hearings opens space for reducing formalities within administrative procedures, even – probably in long term – for reducing administrative procedures to single-level decision-making processes There is no need for administrative procedures to be designed as a court-like procedural system: APs have to be quick, fair and legal problem-solving processes in individual life situations ECHR creates pressure towards simplification and speeding up of administrative procedures; it is up to national states to design and to regulate as effficient administrative procedures as they can
b) Legal situation and instruments for fostering PA efficiency - - - Directive 1999/93/EC on a Community framework for electronic signatures In principle, it opens space for the usage of electronic data, electronic documents, and electronic signatures National states are rather autonomous to decide in which areas and cases electronic means can be used; but then, they ought to be used in a non-discriminatory manner in comparison to ordinary paper means and handwritten signatures When electronic communication is enabled by the national legislation, electronic signatures have to be recognized as evidence in legal proceedings Electronic signatures have to be recognized as equally valid to handwritten signatures and can be asked only there where, in the same cases, handwritten signature is necessary to render legal effects The Directive was aimed at removing barriers to the use of electronic signatures and electronic communication in e-commerce and e-gov.
c) Legal situation and instruments for fostering PA efficiency - Proposal of the Regulation on Electronic Identification and Trust Services for Electronic Transactions in the Internal Market (COM, 2012, 238/2, by European Commission) To replace Signature Directive, which has not found effective implementation EC considers trust as a critical issue of electronic means usage and a key to economic development EC wishes to enable cross-border interoperability and recognition of identification means that are notified to the EC Regulation equalls electronic document with paper document It is expected that legislative proposal will be adopted in 2014 If adopted, it may have a much stronger effect on administrative and other proceedings in which the Member States would need to accept electronic documents, signatures and communication as equally valid to the paper ones
d) Legal situation and instruments for fostering PA efficiency - - - The Directive 2006/123/EC on Services in the Internal Market Aims at reducing barriers to development of services between the Member States, especially administrative burdens (authorisations, procedures, etc. ) established by national governments that can strike particularly small and medium-size businesses (focus on business-to-government, not on citizens -to-government relations) It identifies “red tape” that includes “unnecessary or excessively complex and burdensome procedures”, “duplication of procedures”, “excessively long periods before a response is given”, etc. A need to ensure the business-friendly solutions within public administration for service providers It asks for administrative simplification, meaning (among other measures): a. b. c. d. Principle of tacit authorisation after the lapse of a certain time Points of single contact Publishing all information about the competent authorities and administrative procedures Electronic ways of completing procedures and formalities (communications and transactions)
Points of single contact Ø Ø Ø The points of single contact (PSCs) have been established in all the Member States and some others: ec. europa. eu/internal_market/eu-go/index_en. htm (28 + Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway) They are e-government portals for entrepreneurs active in the service sector. It is a legal obligation to have a PSC in each EU Member State from December 2009. Tax and social security procedures have not been legally requested to be components of PSCs. Many of them are available in English and national languages. Certain countries have enabled more than one PSC – Austria, for example, offers 9 regional PSCs; Germany has additional 16 PSCs at the Länder level; Czech Republic offers 15 PSC in large municipalities, etc. National PSCs are part of the EUGO network
Points of single contact Ø Ø One-stop-shop: offers various services in one place (saves time, effort, money, etc. ); from the US business practice; also for certain other groups of people (youth) or services (rail; tax; custom) Used by many local authorities in the UK; Australian Centrelink, etc. Purposes: informational, intermediary, security, savings, speeding up, be more user-friendly Three main groups of services need to be offered by the PSCs under the Service Directive: Ø Ø Ø Providing information and assistance necessary to access and to exercise service activities Receiving and forwarding applications, requests, and documents to the competent bodies Notifying and delivering information, documents, and administrative acts to the applicants
Points of single contact Ø Ø SPOCS is the project of building the next generation PSCs (www. euspocs. eu); Simple Procedures Online for Cross-Border Services The project encompassed 7 Member States (13 partners in sum) in the first phase (after May 2009). Additional 9 countries with total of 16 new partners accessed later. Three year project (till 2012). In Croatia, PSC can be reached through psc. hgk. hr Problems with PSCs: Ø Some of them do not offer a possibility to complete formalities Ø Ø electronically and from distance User-friendliness is not very high (complicated, not easy to find precise information, weak back offices, etc. ) Foreign languages: only some of them allow completion of procedures in a foreign language Weak transposition at the regional and local levels Weak or no awareness-raising campaigns
Points of single contact Ø Hungary is an interesting example (inspired by the Singapore Citizens Center, as one of the earliest examples? ): Ø Ø Ø Ø During recent reforms separation of front office and back office functions has been implemented. Back office functions have undergone electronic restructuring. The whole system of physical PSCs started to function from January 2011 – Government Windows (300 in Autumn 2013). Government Windows have to make easier for the citizens to personally administer their affairs. Supported by the national electronic solutions. In that regard, Hungary amended its Act on the General Rules of Administrative Procedures (effective from April 2012) The Ministry of Public Administration and Justice is responsible for legal framework, while the Central Office for Administrative and Electronic Public Services maintains the national registries, issues official documents, provides data, operates the governmental web portal and official web pages, etc. The Client Gate is the official central electronic administration web portal of the country.
Points of single contact Ø The Client Gate: Ø Ø Ø Citizens can open their account at any office of the National Tax and Customs Administration, at any e-administration front office, and online if they possess a qualified digital signature It can be used for administration and communication with the authorities About 80 different types of procedures can be instigated through CG, 8 of them fully online. More than a million of users who logged on 250 million times in the last 3 years More than 2, 000 forms are available for download Other e-government solutions: Ø Ø Ø E-Statement for businesses to upload annual statement of financial position E-Company Registry E-Justice for claim procedure, e-judicial file, e-delivery of judicial documents and files, etc.
E-Government v v A system of technological and structural solutions for administering relations of citizens, businesses and other social subjects to the governments and among governmental institutions in electronic way v G 2 C; G 2 B; G 2 G; IEE (internal efficiency and effectiveness) Levels: • Information about public services is provided online • One-way interaction with possibility of downloading printed forms • Two-way interaction when forms are processed electronically • Transaction: cases are handled electronically, including issuing decisions, their delivery, payments, etc. Electronic services are more developed when offered to businesses, than when offered to citizens E-government – e-governance – e-democracy (e-partic. )
UN e-government development index 2012 Rankings reflect an assessment of which countries are undertaking their e-government development with a view to integrated, user-centric public service delivery • Slovenia 30 Croatia 51 Serbia 57 Montenegro 70 Macedonia 79 Bosnia and Herzegovina 86 Albania Online service index; telecommunication index; human capital index