Strong Nations and Collaboration in Public Administration: A Myth or Necessity?
In this chapter, I will argue that collaboration is one very useful vehicle for resolving the bureaucratic-democratic paradox and the dilemmas it fosters. I will try to demonstrate why collaboration among sectors, divisions, individual citizens, and institutions at all levels is very much in keeping with the democratic ethos of freedom of voice and freedom of initiative. I will also argue that collaboration is a desirable goal for bureaucracy, for bureaucrats, for public officials, and public servants because none of them can function independently of the others. Lack of collaboration yields fewer and often poorer results than even the least successful collaborative effort. This contention may contradict some of the common wisdom about centralization and self-initiatives. However, what I am advocating here is the road to partnership, a road nations must travel if they want to become stronger in every sense of the word, be it institutionally, economically, politically, or socially.