Civil service reform

Improving a country’s civil service can further development goals. Reforming the civil service is important in improving governance, service delivery, economic policy and public financial management. What do we know about what has – or hasn’t – worked in civil service reform, and where? What lessons emerge from the literature?

About this Topic Guide

This GSDRC Topic Guide by Sumedh Rao (GSDRC, University of Birmingham) was published in October 2013. Its production was supported by the UK Government.

GSDRC appreciates the contributions of: Gary Reid (Independent Consultant); Willy McCourt (World Bank); Jenny Birchall (BRIDGE); and Alan Whaites, Laure-Hélène Piron, Zoe Wildig, and William Evans (DFID).

GSDRC Topic Guides aim to provide a clear, concise and objective report on findings from rigorous research on critical areas of development policy. Rather than provide policy guidance or recommendations, their purpose is to signpost policymakers and practitioners to the key debates and evidence on the topic of focus, to support informed decision-making.

This Guide complements other GSDRC Topic Guides on Service Delivery and Decentralisation and Local Government.

Suggested citation

Rao, S., (2013). Civil service reform: Topic guide. Birmingham, UK: GSDRC, University of Birmingham