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Latest governance and public administration index released

Released at: 17:46, 02/04/2019

Latest governance and public administration index released

Photo: PAPI

"Vietnam Provincial Governance and Public Administration Performance Index (PAPI) 2018" released on April 2.

by Nghi Do

There was less corruption in the provision of healthcare and education services last year, according to the latest “Vietnam Provincial Governance and Public Administration Performance Index (PAPI) 2018” released on April 2 in Hanoi.

The 2018 PAPI report presents findings from the eighth edition of the annual nationwide survey of PAPI - a quantitative measurement tool that offers a comprehensive picture of how the government at the central and local levels has performed on an annual basis. It also marks the 10th year of the PAPI initiative since its introduction in 2009.

The report captures experiences and perceptions related to the performance of local governments in governance and public administration in 2018 based on a survey of 14,304 citizens with different demographic characteristics, randomly selected from all 63 cities and provinces. It also sums up the statements of 117,363 citizens who have participated in rigorous face-to face surveys since 2009 to share their experiences and assessments of the performance by the State apparatus from the central to commune levels.

Continued positive trends were seen in the performance of governments in the third year of the 2016-2021 term. Results for the “Core PAPI” show that there was improvement, although at different rates, in all of six dimensions in 2018. Three of the dimensions - Participation at Local Levels, Transparency, and Vertical Accountability - showed significant progress, while the other three - Control of Corruption in the Public Sector, Public Administrative Procedures, and Public Service Delivery - exhibited steady improvement.

National Trends from 2011 to 2018 in the Core PAPI

Overall, scores for Participation at Local Levels remained at the average level in 2018. There was not a wide range in provincial performance scores, with the difference between the highest (6.16 points) and lowest (4.41 points) being only 1.75 points (on the 1 to 10-point scale). This implies that all cities and provinces performed at the average level in engaging citizens in local government affairs.

Dimensional scores for transparency were at an average level in 2018, with provincial scores ranging from 4.55 to 6 points. The gap is small between the best performing and worst performing cities and provinces, implying that all performed at the average level in transparency in local decision-making. In particular, the aggregate sub-dimensional score for the new Access to Information sub-dimension was only 0.81 points on a scale of 0.25 to 2.5 points, and therefore contributed the least to the overall dimension score. The next lowest score was in the sub-dimension Land Use Plans and Price Frames with an aggregate score of 1.34 points on the same scale.

Dimensional scores for Vertical Accountability remained at a low-average level in 2018, with provincial scores ranging from 4.31 to 5.6 points (on a scale from 1 to 10 points). The range between the best performing and worst performing cities and provinces is small, implying that localities around the country performed similarly in this governance area.

Control of Corruption in the Public Sector dimensional scores were at the above-average level in 2018, with city and provincial scores ranging from 5.52 to 7.61 points (on a scale of 1 to 10). There is a relatively significant gap between the best performing and worst performing cities and provinces, implying that localities performed with some variation in controlling corruption in the public sector.

Public Administrative Procedures dimensional scores were at the high-average level in 2018, with city and provincial scores ranging from 6.9 to 7.95 points (on a scale of 1 to 10). The gap between cities and provinces in this dimension is also narrow, implying that localities performed equally well in the provision of public administrative procedures. Consistent improvement over time is evident for all four public administrative services, especially in land procedures, though this area remained the weakest service in 2018 and has been the weakest over time.

Scores for the Public Service Delivery dimension were at the high-average level, with city and provincial scores ranging from 6.58 to 7.68 points (on a 1 to 10-point scale). The gap between cities and provinces in this dimension is also narrow, implying they performed equally well in the provision of public services in primary education, healthcare, basic infrastructure, and law and order. In particular, there has been consistent improvement in public healthcare since 2016, reflected in better city and provincial scores in almost every indicator of this sub-dimension.

The dimensional scores for Environmental Governance were well below the average level; city and provincial scores ranged from 3.54 to 6.74 points (on a 1 to 10-point scale). The gap between the highest and lowest scoring cities and provinces in this dimension is large, implying that citizens in different cities and provinces experience quite varied environmental quality.

Provincial scores in the E-Governance dimension were very low, ranging from 1.93 to 4.24 points (on a scale of 1 to 10 points). The gap between cities and provinces is significant, implying that the implementation of e-governance policy remains a huge challenge but is also an opportunity for cities and provinces and also users. Regional patterns in this dimension are clear: better performing cities and provinces were mostly in the north, with the geographic concentration greatest in the Access to E-government Portals sub-dimension.

PAPI is a collaborative effort between the Center for Community Support and Development Studies (CECODES), the Center for Research and Training of the Viet Nam Fatherland Front (VFF-CRT), Real-Time Analytics, and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

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