The paper examines the role of social rewards in Bentham’s analysis of public management. In his early works on reward, Bentham argued that emulation for honour, social status, and in some cases also pecuniary rewards were a potent means to stimulate the productivity and efficiency of civil servants. He admired Catherine the Great, the empress of Russia, for the articulated ‘scale of ranks’ she had contrived to stimulate emulation. However, in later moral and political works Bentham became increasingly sceptical about the use of emulation. In the contest for honour, dignity and status he saw a dangerous mechanism that could generate abuses, mismanagement and corruption. In his theory of representative democracy Bentham suggested to replace competition for ‘factitious dignity’ with the love of reputation (or ‘general respect’) as a motive that could stimulate the efficiency of civil servants and strengthen their ‘moral aptitude’, avoiding corruption and preventing aristocracies. The paper argues that this revision marks a key historical turn from a focus on hierarchical social rewards to another on more horizontal and democratic ones.
|Titolo:||‘Public Respect’ vs. ‘Factitious Dignity’. Emulation and Reputation in Bentham’s Theory of Bureaucracy|
|Anno del prodotto:||2010|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.4406/storiaepolitica20100301|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|