Dwarika Dhungel

Senior Researcher
Institute for Integrated Development Studies
Focus Area(s): 
Civil Service
Critical Tasks: 
Depoliticization
Downsizing
Interviewers: 
Andrew Schalkwyk
Country of Reform: 
Nepal
Town/City: 
Kathmandu
Country: 
Nepal
Date of Interview: 
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Abstract 

Dwarika Dhungel describes Nepal’s experience with civil service reform as it transitioned from a unitary state ruled by a monarchy to a multi-party parliamentary state evolving toward a decentralized federal system. At the start of this transition, an Administrative Reforms Commission chaired by the prime minister was established. It prepared 116 recommendations to right-size and rationalize the civil service and the organization and functions of government. However, while the commission did its work a large number of civil servants were fired, throwing the reform process into turmoil and the commission chairman resigned. Officials from the political parties then began to politicize the civil service, removing long-time employees and elevating party supporters. At the time of the interview, the Asian Development Bank pressed for some reform and anti-corruption efforts and a new “good governance” law had been enacted, but whether it would be implemented was unknown.  

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Terms of Use
Full Interview: 
Audio file not available.
Profile: 
At the time of this interview, Dwarika Dhungel was a senior researcher at the Institute for Integrated Development Studies in Kathmandu, Nepal. He served as Head of the Institute from October 2000 to April 2006. He served in the Nepal Administrative Service (NAS) starting in the 1970s rising from junior officer to the rank of Permanent Secretary. In 1991, he sat on the Administrative Reforms Commission to reorganize Nepal’s civil service. Subsequently he served as secretary to the Administrative Reforms Monitoring Committee. He left the NAS in 1998 and served briefly as a consultant to Transparency International and for the Centre for Democracy and Good Governance (CSDG). In 1999, he was a visiting scholar at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, USA.
Language: 
English
Nationality of Interviewee: 
Nepali
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Dwarika Dhungel
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Keywords 
ranks and grades
promotion
performance management
Patronage
managing diversity
Downsizing
Donor Relations
Depoliticization
Decentralization
corruption
civil service commission
Nepal