Identifying a single model of public administration in Latin America entails a simplification due to the variety of countries with different governance structures, administrative systems, historical legacies, and ways of addressing public sector reforms over time. Nevertheless, an extended feature among Latin American public administrations is the coexistence of Weberian models with patrimonialism and large-scale patronage practices. Although at first sight public administrations can formally contain all or most of the typical characteristics of a modern bureaucratic system, some of their practices are extraneous to everyday management. In this context, the waves of administrative reforms have sought, with different approaches, to strengthen the public machinery. An important point is that administrative reforms in Latin America largely followed a center–periphery pattern. Firstly, through the imitation of practices of the colonialist countries and later by importing reform packages from the central countries. Thus, this chapter goes over the main historical characteristics in the construction of the Latin American public administration, the reforms paradigms that have marked it and their consequences.
Ramos, C. and Milanesi, A. (2021), "A Brief Story of Latin American Public Administration: A Particular Model", Peters, B.G., Tercedor, C.A. and Ramos, C. (Ed.) The Emerald Handbook of Public Administration in Latin America, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 9-19. https://doi.org/10.1108/978-1-83982-676-420201002
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