Place: 29th NISPAcee Annual Conference, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Date: October 21-23, 2021
Main theme of the conference: "Citizens' Engagement and Empowerment - The Era of Collaborative Innovation in Governance"
Despite the extenuating circumstances of the pandemic, three lively sessions took place, and the PAR themes addressed in the eleven presentations/papers were on advisory bodies, ambassadorial appointments, political advisers, and scrutiny of politico-administrative relations in CEE (trust and loyalty, turnover, civil service management). The work presented makes several contributions, notably – interpretations of politicization and explanations for patronage appointments and removals (Staroňová; Zankina), a new typology illustrating the political motivations behind and the types of ambassadorial appointments (Leach), roles of senior civil servants (Gajduschek & Hajnal; Klotz) and the role of advisory bodies/policy advisory systems (Hudec; Bakoš; Connaughton; Musa). In addition, the on political advisers and understanding this role in a CEE context was presented in a paper by Katarina Staroňová and Marek Rybar and this contribution to a distinct gap in the PAR literature was acknowledged in the award for best paper presented at the conference.