This book examines the extent to which recent transformations of administrative systems and public management mechanisms in Central European (CE) countries serve the purpose of providing effective and efficient public institutions, high quality of public services, respect for the rule of law, and the citizens’ trust in the state.

It details the reasons behind the major differences in the modernisation paths followed and their attendant inconsistencies and how, despite the adoption of values and solutions prevailing in the EU upon accession, these countries are shifting, to varying degrees, towards institutional design reminiscent of illiberal democracies. Taking a comparative approach and based on rich original data, it applies theoretical models to explain the nature and implications of the processes under consideration and identifies the determinants that impact upon the transformation of public administration systems and its consequences.

This book will be of key interest to scholars and students of public governance, public administration and policy, East European studies, and more broadly politics, law, sociology but also economy.

part I|42 pages


chapter 1|24 pages

The singularity of Central Europe?

ByJacek Purchla

chapter 2|16 pages

From Stalinism to liberal democracy

A recent history of administration in the V4 countries
ByRafał Matyja

part II|47 pages

The ideational basis for the emergence of institutions and institutional reforms

chapter 3|12 pages

How ideas and institutions mutually affect each other

ByJerzy Hausner, Michał Możdżeń

chapter 4|18 pages

The competition of ideas and ideational disruption

ByStanisław Mazur

chapter 5|15 pages

The background, direction, ideas, triggers, and durability of public sector reforms

A conceptual analysis of the EU28 and the Visegrád 4
ByFrits van der Meer, Gerrit Dijkstra

part III|90 pages

Public administration relations with the environment

chapter 6|13 pages

Politicians and bureaucrats in Central and Eastern Europe

Governance with increased politicisation
ByB. Guy Peters

chapter 7|23 pages

Modes of governance in the Visegrád countries

Towards the hesitant institutional convergence
ByPiotr Kopyciński

chapter 8|18 pages

Between compliance and systemic change

Evaluation practice in eight CEE countries
ByTomasz Kupiec, Dominika Wojtowicz, Karol Olejniczak

chapter 9|17 pages

Relations with interest groups and corruption in the V4 countries

ByEmília Sičáková-Beblavá, Miroslav Beblavý

chapter 10|17 pages

Populism in the Visegrád Group countries

ByJolanta Itrich-Drabarek, Przemysław Kisiel

part IV|48 pages

Management reforms in public administration

chapter 11|13 pages

Public administration structures

ByArnošt Veselý

chapter 12|14 pages

Public financial management

ByDawid Sześciło

chapter 13|19 pages

Local government in the V4 countries

Heyday, stability, or retreat?
ByJarosław Bober, Andrzej Kozina

part V|62 pages

Reconceptualisation – the role of competition of ideas in PA reform

chapter 14|20 pages

Interrupted progress

Towards an understanding of causes of institutional disruption
ByKrzysztof Głuc, Michał Żabiński

chapter 16|17 pages

A review of administrative reforms in the V4 countries

ByStanisław Mazur, Piotr Kopyciński

chapter |4 pages


ByStanisław Mazur