UCA’s Institute of Public Policy and Administration Hosts Policy-Making Process in Government Symposium
On 24 December 2013, the University of Central Asia’s Institute of Public Policy and Administration (UCA-IPPA) hosted a symposium on Policy-Making Process in Government in the Kyrgyz Republic. The symposium was organised within the framework of UCA’s Research and Public Policy Initiative, and is the first in a series which will take place in the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan and Afghanistan. Held in Bishkek, it was attended by representatives of ministries, state committees, business associations and civil society, as well as independent experts.
“This symposium is part of UCA’s ongoing effort to build the capacity of public servants in evidence-based public policy development and analysis,” said Dr Bohdan Krawchenko, UCA Director General, “An essential component in this enterprise is a defined policy-making process in government. The symposium is focused on how the policy-making process in government is organised, and how it can be improved to allow inputs informed by the best available research and analysis.”
In his opening remarks, Oleg Tarbinski, Deputy Director, State Personnel Service of the Kyrgyz Republic said, “The Kyrgyz Republic needs adequate training of civil servants in fields such as public policy to tackle challenging issues. The State Personnel Service has taken significant steps to improve the quality of public service through transparent recruitment based on merit. We look forward to cooperation with UCA on the professional development of staff.” He also presented a case study on the State Personnel Service and the Formulation of Strategy.
|Oleg Tarbinskii (first from right), Deputy Director, State Personnel Service, speaks on the importance of well-trained civil servants.
IPPA researcher Cholpon Nogoibaeva delivered a paper on Policy Development in the Executive Branch of the Kyrgyz Republic. Based on a review of laws, government resolutions and other normative acts adopted in the Kyrgyz Republic since independence, she showed that a legal foundation exists for a robust and defined policy-making process in government.
“There is little need to revise the normative basis,” asserted Dr Nogoibaeva, “Rather, the point is to understand and implement what has already been mandated. For example, Kyrgyzstan has excellent statutory requirements to ensure that economic legislation is subject to regulatory impact analysis. A handbook on how to carry out such analysis already exists. However, these requirements are rarely adhered to.”
|IPPA researcher Cholpon Nogoibaeva (first from left) discusses her paper on Policy Development in the Executive Branch of the Kyrgyz Republic.
IPPA researcher Shokhboz Asadov also presented a paper on addressing the policy-making process in Tajikistan. For over two decades, public policy in Tajikistan has been centralised and determined by the President, who serves as Head of State and Head of Government. Although there is public participation in policy formulation, its effectiveness leaves much to be desired. . Additionally, due to a lack of evidence-based analytical capacity of civil servants, legislation often requires amendments.
Summaries of two papers from the IPPA Occasional Paper Series, Policy Analysis as Profession in Government: Who does What and How? by Dr Mahabat Baimyrzaeva, and Public Engagement: Building Institutional Capacity by Tyler Knowlton, were also presented.
To kick off the discussion, Dr Krawchenko presented an analysis of best practices within OECD countries on the policy-making process in government. During the discussion, Tolkunbek Abdygulov, Head of the Economy and Investment Department of the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic observed, “Policy processes are important but difficult to address, because they exist at the interface of theory and practice.”
“IPPA researchers contributed important data and analysis, stimulating fruitful discussions about both the challenges to the policy process in the region and potential solutions,” said Dr Roman Mogilevskii, IPPA Project Coordinator, when closing the symposium. He also noted that IPPA will offer a Certificate Programme in Policy Analysis in 2014, and encouraged both civil servants and civil society actors to apply.
The University of Central Asia’s Research and Public Policy Initiative (RPPI) aims to ground policy- making processes in Afghanistan and Central Asia in sound evidence and policy analysis by building the capacity of the region’s researchers to conduct independent and critical studies and by expanding the ability of policy professionals in the region to utilise such research in policy development. RPPI is supported by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and Aga Khan Foundation Canada.
The Institute of Public Policy and Administration (IPPA) Occasional Paper Series is a peer-reviewed series designed to enhance dialogue between policy makers, the public and educators. Experts engage in research and discussion highlighting topical issues and best practices in areas such as institutionalcapacity in public engagement and policy analysis as a profession in government. The first two papers in the series are available at: http://www.ucentralasia.org/Research/ippa