Fiorenzo Liguori

Full Professor of Administrative Law at the University of Naples "Federico II".

Public administration has long been regarded as an obstacle to economic development because of high degrees of complexity, formalism and inefficiency. On the assumption that one can do without an inefficient administration, we are witnessing an expansion of administration by law. To cope with this phenomenon, there have been several reforms aimed at the so called “de-bureaucratisation”. Administrative simplification, however, cannot be conceived as a simple reduction of complexity, which in fact reflects that of the reality administered. The regulation of Special Economic Zones offers an interesting opportunity to reflect on the different types of administrative simplification that can be envisaged. On the one hand, it allows one to isolate some mutations suffered by traditional institutions, such as the conference of services. On the other hand, it allows one to define the tension between the decision-making and the "cognitive" instance, as it is precisely the latter that makes it possible to highlight the need for a recovery of the administrative technical capacity, which could help identify fruitful paths of administrative reform. Simplification alone is not a sufficient solution to solve the crisis in public administration. The National Recovery and Resilience Plan seems to be starting from this consideration, promoting the selection of the best skills and qualifications, through a review of the public competition’s procedures and the promotion of merit in the context of Public Administration.

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