Journal of Asian and African Studies XXII, 1-2 (1987)

Assessing the Impact of the Post Civil War Period on the Lebanese Bureaucracy: A View from Inside


American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon



Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, U.S.A.


This article, based on a survey of Lebanese bureaucrats conducted in 1979-80, provides all empirical assessment of the impact of the continuing conflict in Lebanon on the governmental bureaucracy. The Findings are presented in terms of the framework offered by the Weberian model of bureaucracy and offer a view of the impact of the conflict from the perspective of the bureaucrats themselves. Major areas examined include the impact of the war on bureaucratic structure, bureaucratic performance and behavior, and the bureaucratic environment.


After, ten years of intermittent civil war, Lebanon continues to struggle under conditions of severe social, political, and economic stress-conditions which threaten its very existence as a nation. During this period, Lebanon's governmental bureaucracy has continued to survive, and in some ways to function, providing a limited amount of public service and investment in collective goods. The continued survival of the bureaucracy is significant because of the unique role it has played in the formation and functioning of tile Lebanese state. The bureaucracy was the result of the political compromise which created modern Lebanon.As a result of this compromise, the National Pact, the governmental bureaucracy is a sectarian institution That is, it includes within its ranks representatives of Lebanon's diverse religious and ethnic communities. And, despite its ineffectual performance in the current crisis, it remains Lebanon's only truly national institution.

Recent literature on Lebanon includes considerable anecdotal information oil the many failures and rare successes of the national administrative system during this period.1However, the actual focus of this literature is on political actors and events rather than on the bureaucracy per se. Thus, there has been little systematic assessment of the overall impact of the civil war period on the bureaucracy. By focusing on conditions within the bureaucracy as perceived by a sample of Lebanese bureaucrats this research seeks to contribute to a more precise understanding of the impact of the continuing conflict on Lebanon's national administrative system. Hopefully, such an assessment can in turn contribute in a small way to a more general understanding of the problems facing the Lebanese today.

The survey data examined in this study were collected in 1979-80, about midway through the period under consideration. The survey was conducted under the auspices of the President's Commission on Administrative reform and included fourteen ministry offices located in the Beirut area. Based on the distribution of sect, rank, and agency, the respondents, approximately three hundred civil servants working in the greater Beirut area, appear to constitute a reasonably representative sample of higher level bureaucrats who remained on the job during the civil war period. Collecting survey data proved somewhat difficult in tile midst of the civil war period, particularly since many of the questions could be regarded as sensitive even under normal circumstances.

Respondents were assured of the anonymity of their responses and were asked to complete and return the self- administered questionnaires, by mail. However, the mails proved unreliable, and an alternative procedure was adopted whereby questionnaires were completed at the office, during the working day, and then collected and returned by hand. An initial distribution of 500 questionnaires produced 289 useable responses, a response rate of 59 percent. The respondents represent 14 of Lebanon's 17 different ministries. Respondents were asked to provide information on how the situation in Lebanon was affecting the work of their agencies, their relationships with their colleagues, and various other aspects of bureaucratic behavior.

The data produced by the survey, though limited in some respects, permit an examination of the impact of the civil war period on several important aspects of bureaucratic structure and behavior. These include: (1) the impact of the war on presidential and higher executive authority, (2) the extent of physical dislocation experienced by the work force as a result of the continuing conflict, (3) the impact of the conflict on the professionalism and career commitment of bureaucrats, (4) the impact of the conflict on sectarianism and sectarian relationships within the bureaucracy, and (5) the impact of the conflict on the prevalence of political pressure on the bureaucracy and individual bureaucrats. Finally, the data permit some examination of the influence of sect on the bureaucrats' perceptions of the war's impact. The results of the survey are presented and discussed below, following a brief overview of the history and development of Lebanon's governmental bureaucracy.

Historical Background

Lebanon's bureaucracy has been shaped both by its indigenous cultural and political traditions and by the region's long history of Ottoman and, more recently, French domination.2 French administration has been described as classical bureaucracy because of its close adherence to the Weberian "idealtype".3 In particular, French bureaucracy is notable for its extreme centralization of authority and for its elitism in the recruitment of bureaucrats.4 The influence of the French administrative model is most strongly evident in tile formal design of Lebanese bureaucracy. A great deal of attention is paid in both statutes and administrative regulations to the promotion of the formal elements of the bureaucratic "idealtype". Formal authority is highly centralized, both organizationally and geographically. Most civil servants live and work in the capital, Beirut, and it is here that all important policy and resource allocation decisions are made.

Following tile French model, Lebanon's administrative and political system is unitary. The country is divided into six administrative districts known as Muhafazahs. These districts are further divided into smaller units called Qadas. There are twenty-three Qadas in Lebanon. The head officials of these divisions and subdivisions, called respectively the Muhafiz and the Qa'immaqam are employees of the central government, as are all other district officials. As such, they have little autonomy. Legally, they must defer to the central administration in Beirut for decisions on most routine matters, and for all exceptional cases.

In addition to being highly centralized, Lebanon's bureaucracy is also functionally specialized. There are currently seventeen different Ministries each with its own well-defined area of activity. Written rules governing work situations and employee conduct are spelled out in elaborate and exhaustive detail. Two watchdog agencies, the Central Inspection Agency and the Civil Service Board, are charged with the respective missions of insuring proper adherence to operating procedure and guaranteeing the integrity of the merit system.

Also, following the French pattern, Lebanese bureaucracy is elitist in character. Historically recruitment patterns have favored members of the nation's social, economic and educational elites, who have tended also to be members of the Maronite Christian community. For example, most high officials are graduates of Lebanon's exclusive and expensive private educational system, in particular, the French-Maronite oriented St. Joseph's University. Professionally, law degrees seem. to predominate in the higher levels of the civil service.

In short, in terms of the formal structure of its administrative system, Lebanon has been strongly influenced by the form of bureaucracy found in modern western nations. Despite the strong French influence on formal structures, Lebanon's bureaucracy, in practice, is much different than that of France. This is hardly surprising considering the great differences between the French society which evolved the model and the Lebanese society which adopted it.

French society is modern, differentiated in its institutions, and possessed of a common cultural tradition and national identity. Lebanon is a transitional society with many traditional elements.5It is relatively undifferentiated in its social institutions, encompasses a number of different and often conflicting cultural traditions, and possesses a much weaker sense of national identity. Given the diverse character of Lebanese society, the highly centralized French administrative model seems a singularly inappropriate choice. In fact, the French example has been greatly modified in translation.

In practice, Lebanese bureaucracy is built on the principle of sectarianism. This is rooted in the National Pact which is an unwritten but important part of the Lebanese constitution. Negotiated in 1943, at the time of independence, the National Pact allocated political representation among Lebanon's different ethnic and religious groups on the basis of representation in the population. For example, the three top political positions in the government are distributed as follows: the President of the Republic is always a Maronite Christian, the President of the Council of Ministers is a Sunni Muslim, and the President of the Chamber of Deputies is a Shite Muslim. Tile principle of sectarian representation also applies to the composition of the National Assembly, the army and bureaucracy, and encompasses seventeen officially recognized sects.

The number of positions allocated to each sect are, in theory, based on the 1932 census. Detailed Figures on the numbers and types of positions allocated to each group are not officially available. Lebanon's current problems arise in large measure from the fact that the Maronites, the group most favored by tile 1932 census, have used their dominant position in the government and their control over tile highly centralized bureaucracy to establish and maintain for themselves a favored position in Lebanese society. They have also used their dominant position to oppose Muslim demands for a new census. Based upon population trends, a new census would probably support a major redistribution of power and positions in favor of the Muslim groups, in particular the Shite community.

Lebanese bureaucracy also differs from the "idealtype" in a number of other ways. Of great political importance have been the practices of wasta and baksheesh. Wasta refers to the granting of favorable treatment by bureaucrats on tile basis of political loyalty, family influence, class or sect. Baksheesh is the charging of fees by officials for government services. These forms of bureaucratic pathology are not surprising as they reflect important values in traditional Arab culture, i.e., tile importance of family and sect, and the practice of bestowing gifts for services as a common form of exchange.

However, in Lebanon's transitional and conflict-prone society, these practices have helped to make tile performance of the bureaucracy a continuing political issue. Much of Lebanon's western-oriented business and professional community view wasta and baksheesh as corrupt and undesirable. However, these practices are extensively employed, particularly by the traditional sectarian politicians, who head the leading political families.

There were several attempts at civil service reform in Lebanon during the period leading up to the 1975 civil war.6 The most successful of these occurred under tile administration of President Fuad Shihab, who assumed office in the wake of the brief 1958 civil war. Shihab sought to professionalize the civil service and use it as a tool for overcoming Lebanon's factional politics. As Adeed Dawisha has noted " decreasing his contacts with the traditional politicians and relying instead on a cadre of competent and efficient civil servants, Shihab minimised the perceived importance of the traditional politicians, thus making their sectarian conflicts seem like petty squabbles. "7 However, despite this success, by the nineteen seventies the pendulum had swung away from reform. Arab nationalism, defeat in the 1967 Arab Israeli war, the rise of the PLO in Lebanon, and the growing dissatisfaction of Lebanon's Muslim communities with the status quo, all combined to increase sectarian pressures on the bureaucracy, greatly limiting its ability to act.

Findings and Discussion

The Centralization of Authority

A central concern of public bureaucracy is its responsiveness, at all levels, to the authority of the political leadership. Several questions provide insight into the impact of the civil war period on the centralization of presidential and other supervisory authority within the bureaucracy. When asked to characterize the impact of the war on the authority of the presidential office, 81 percent of the respondents reported that presidential authority had decreased greatly in terms of its effect on their agency, while 15 percent reported that they perceived little or no change.8 When asked to evaluate, generally, the impact of the civil war on the superior-subordinate relationships within the civil service, 83 percent reported that employees were less closely supervised as a result of the war; while 15 percent reported that they perceived no change in the character of supervision.

An anticipated effect of decreased executive authority in a bureaucratic organization is an increase in problems resulting from a lack of coordination among administrative units. This appears to be the case in Lebanon. When questioned about the impact of the war on the prevalence of this type of problem, 42 percent of the respondents reported that coordination among administrative units had decreased: greatly, 39 percent reported that it had decreased somewhat, 9 percent that there had been no change, and 8 percent that it had improved.

Another indication of the erosion of higher, authority is provided by the respondents' assessment of the impact of the war on the performance of two watchdog agencies, the Central Inspection Agency and the Civil Service Board. When asked to evaluate the work of the Central Inspection Agency, which functions as an audit and evaluation arm for the Prime Minister's office, 81 percent of those surveyed reported that from their perspective the agency was not able to function at all. A smaller number of respondents, 15 percent, found the work of the Agency to be somewhat helpful in the current situation. In a similar evaluation of the performance of the Civil Service Board, the watchdog agency of the merit system, 54 percent reported that in their view the Board had entirely abandoned its oversight function. Thirty-four percent reported that the work of the Board was somewhat helpful in the current situation, and 6 percent reported that they saw no change in the Board's performance.

In a related question, respondents were asked to evaluate the impact of the .war on the criteria employed in the annual (1979-80) round of personnel decisions on initial appointments and promotions. Less than one percent of the respondents reported that they felt that capability alone was the principal criterion for such decisions. Fourteen percent indicated that they felt capability and personal influence together were the major criteria; while 60 percent felt that the major criteria were personal influence and external pressure. Generaly, the responses to these questions point to an erosion of the authority relationships necessary for the direction of a large, complex organization.

Dislocation of Offices and Work Force

The limitations which the war placed on the movement of citizens within the country produced a number of impacts on employment patterns from which the public sector was not exempt.9 Because of the dangers presented by travel outside one's neighborhood, many government employees we're unable or unwilling to attend their jobs on a regular basis. Sometimes employees were able to cope with this situation by transferring to another government office to make commuting safer. The situation was further complicated by the fact that, because of the fighting, many government offices had to be relocated. As a result of these factors, some civil servants became perpetual non- attenders. Many of this group found other employment in Lebanon or abroad but under the government's personnel policies they retained their positions including pay and benefits.

Several questions provide insight into the extent of this dislocation of the work force. Twenty percent of those surveyed reported that the war had resulted ill the relocation of the office in which they worked. Twenty-five percent reported that the war had resulted in their transfer to another office. Of this latter group, 85 percent said that the transfer was due to fighting in the area. Eleven percent of those surveyed reported that the war had resulted in a change in their job or type of work that they normally performed. Finally, 20 percent of the respondents indicated that they had changed their residence as a result of the war.

Respondents were asked to estimate the percentages of employees in their units who were not attending work regularly. These were typically employees who had found other work. Twenty-seven percent of those surveyed reported that their units had lost from one percent to ten percent of their strength in this manner. Eighteen percent reported a work force loss of 22 to 40 percent, and 15 percent reported that the rate of absenteeism in their units regularly exceeded 40 percent. These figures are consistent with various unofficial estimates made by government officials during the civil war period. Generally, these unofficial estimates put the overall rate of absenteeism between 30 and 70 percent given the security situation at the time.

Professionalism and Career Attachment

Most Lebanese bureaucrats are products of Lebanon's French-styled system of higher education. Thus, the formal model of appropriate administrative behavior to which they have been exposed is that of the administrator as the repository of state sovereignty. This implies commitment to an abstract national identity as well as to the more mundane bureaucratic values of economy and efficiency in the service of the state. While such values do not appear to have been a strong influence in Lebanese administration, they are present to some degree. The professional values held by the bureaucrats have been shown to be important determinants of bureaucratic behavior and performance.10 The concept of professionalism refers to how closely these values are held and acted on by administrators. Career attachment refers to an individual's preference for a career in government service.

The responses to two questions help illuminate the general effect that the war has had on the professionalism and career attachment of the respondents. When asked how the war had affected the professionalism of civil servants, 11 percent reported no change, three percent reported increased professionalism, and 83 percent reported a decrease in professionalism among their colleagues. In the second question, respondents were asked how the war had affected the career attachment of bureaucrats. Eighteen percent reported no change in career attachment. Twenty-six percent felt that employees were more attached .to their careers, while 53 percent felt that employees were less attached to their careers (more likely to leave) as a result of the war. Thus, in the view of a majority of the sample, the war has worked to substantially reduce civil service professionalism and to weaken the career attachment of civil servants.

Bureaucratic Sectarianism

In Lebanon the degree to which governmental actions and policies: are perceived to have a sectarian dimension is crucial to the bureaucracy's ability to act.11 Issues that assume a sectarian character tend to paralyze the bureaucracy. Three questions serve to illuminate some of the impacts of the war on sectarianism within the bureaucracy. First, respondents were asked if they perceived any changes in the importance of sectarian considerations in administration as a result of the war. Twenty-four percent of those responding reported no change. Twelve percent reported that the importance of sectarian considerations had increased somewhat; while 64 percent felt that sectarian considerations had increased greatly as a result of the war.

Second, respondents were asked how the war had affected their personal relationships with colleagues of different sects. Thirty-one percent reported no change in the quality of such relationships. Sixty-four percent felt that such relationships had cooled; while five percent felt that in their case personal relationships had been strengthened as a result of the situation.

Finally, respondents were asked to describe how the war had affected the treatment that citizens might expect to receive at the hands of a civil servant of a same or different sect. Three response categories were provided and respondents were asked to pick the single category that best described the situation. Of the 219 bureaucrats responding, 35 percent felt that the official's sect would have no impact on the treatment received by citizens. Fifteen percent felt that citizens would receive better treatment at the hands of an official of the same sect; while Fifty percent felt that citizens would receive less favorable treatment from an official who was not of the same sect. Thus, in the view of the respondents, the war has increased sectarian concerns within the bureaucracy, worsened personal relationships between civil servants of different sects, and produced an increase in the biased treatment of citizens based on sect.

Economic Corruption and External Influence

As noted above, corruption in the bureaucracy has been a long standing issue in Lebanese politics and administration. 12Bureaucratic corruption can take many forms based on a variety of situational dynamics. The questions asked in this study permit examination of two general categories of corruption. These include the prevalence of bribes and payoffs, usually as a direct exchange for service, and the incidence of political influence in matters that bureaucrats normally regard as falling properly within the sphere of administration.

When asked if the incidence of bribes and payoffs had increased as a consequence of the conflict in Lebanon, 14 percent of those surveyed reported no change. Thirty-four percent reported that the occurrence of such illegal transactions had increased somewhat; while 52 percent reported that the level of bribery and payoffs had increased greatly as a result of the conflict. Respondents were also asked if they felt that their superiors were more likely to condone these practices given the current situation. Sixteen percent reported that they saw no change in the behavior of superiors in this respect. Thirty-eight percent felt that superiors were more likely to ignore such transactions. Four percent felt that superiors were less likely than before to ignore such transactions, and 15 percent indicated no opinion.

Bribes and payoffs can be classified as either employee initiated or citizen initiated. Respondents who reported. an increase in economic corruption were asked if they saw the pressure to engage in such transactions as originating more with citizens or more with public officials. When asked if citizens were more likely now than before the war to offer a bribe, 76 percent responded affirmatively, 6 percent saw no change, and 17 percent indicated that they did not know. When asked if public officials were more likely now than before to demand a bribe, 75 percent said yes, 9 percent said no, and 16 percent said that they did not know. Thus, increased economic corruption appears to be a two-way street.

External influence on the bureaucracy refers, more generally, to efforts by political groups to affect policies that are outside of the legally prescribed political process. To the world, the most visible aspect of Lebanese politics in recent years has been the rise of a large and sometimes bewildering number of political parties and groups operating outside the legal and constitutional framework. Initially, political parties in Lebanon were built around leading families and their retainers. Leaders and followers came from the same geographic area and shared a common religious and cultural tradition. Leaders and followers were bound together in land-based exchange relationships of a paternal, often feudal character. By the 1970s these traditional parties had to make room for ideological-based parties with urban roots. Further complicating the situation were the various Palestinian groups who were drawn into the conflict. Finally, other regional powers, in particular Syria with its special relationship to Lebanon, have exercised their influence on the bureaucracy

Frequently, attempts to influence the bureaucracy have taken the form of threats against individual bureaucrats. This phenomenon is not new to Lebanese politics, but the war appears to have greatly expanded the practice. In the absence of any effective law enforcement, the influence that can be wielded by minor parties or even individuals with political connections is chilling in the extreme. For example, during this period the head of the civil service commission was visited in his office by a man who informed him that he would he killed if a particular promotion did not go through. The threat was regarded. by the official and his staff as perfectly credible.

Four questions provide a look at the respondents' perceptions of external influence on the bureaucracy in this period. When asked, generally, if they felt that political interference in administration had increased as a result of the conflict, 13 percent reported no change, 34 percent thought that it had increased somewhat, and 50 percent thought that it had increased greatly. When asked if die situation in Lebanon had resulted in increased outside pressure of a coercive nature being directed toward individual bureaucrats, 31 percent reported no change, 32 percent felt that such pressures had increased somewhat, and 37 percent felt that there was much pressure of this sort being brought to bear (11 officials. When asked if officials tended to submit to such coercion more frequently as a result of the situation in Lebanon, 17 percent reported no change, 31 percent reported that officials gave in to such pressures somewhat more frequently, and 42 percent said that officials acquiesced to such pressures much more frequently. Finally,.. respondents were, asked which of three leadership groups in Lebanese society exercised the most influence with the bureaucracy. There was almost no variation in the responses provided by officials. Ninety- six percent named political parties and organizations as the most influential group, two percent named traditional politicians, and one percent named religious leaders. Overall, the responses to these questions indicate a large increase in all types of external pressure on the bureaucracy.

Sect and Perceptions of the Bureaucracy

In order to determine if the respondents' perceptions of conditions within the bureaucracy varied with sect, the 124 individuals who provided this information were subdivided broadly into two groups, Christians and Muslims' (unfortunately the low response rate on this question makes further subdivision inappropriate). Sect was then cross-tabulated with the responses to a number of the questions considered above. The questions selected included measures of the respondents' perceptions of executive authority, professionalism, career attachment, sectarian concerns, personal relationships, and external pressures on bureaucrats. The results of the analysis are displayed in Tables 1 through 9. As the tables indicate there were no statistically significant differences between the groups on four of these measures. Both groups see the decline in executive authority, the weakening of career attachment, the cooling of personal relationships, and the increased corruption in much the same light. On the remaining five measures, however, there are some small but statistically significant differences associated with sect.

Christian bureaucrats report more emphasis on sectarian concerns as a result of the conflict than do Muslim bureaucrats. Christian bureaucrats also report somewhat higher levels of political and outside interference in administration than do Muslims. Muslim bureaucrats are somewhat more inclined than their Christian counterparts to report a decline in professionalism, and slightly more inclined to report increased submission to external pressures on the part of bureaucrats. While these differences are statistically significant when subjected to a chi square test, they are also relatively small as indicated by the percentages in each response category. On the whole, there is much more agreement than disagreement between the groups.

The reason for these differences may reside in the fact that in the broader social conflict that exists in Lebanon, Christian- groups, generally, are defenders of the status quo while Muslim groups are, on the whole, advocates of change. Christian bureaucrats may be more sensitive to the presence of external political influence as a threat- to the status quo while Muslim bureaucrats may be more sensitive to what they perceive to be non-professional or corrupt behavior on the part of the Christian- dominated bureaucracy. However, given the extreme polarization of the different elements of Lebanese society during this period, often along sectarian lines, the lack of larger differences on these measures is perhaps unexpected. Of particular interest is the finding of no difference on the career attachment measure. This is important because the viability of the bureaucracy as a national institution depends on the continued participation of all elements of Lebanese society. In summary, despite small differences on these measures, these data suggest that on the whole respondents tend to perceive the impact of the civil war period on bureaucracy in much the same way regardless of their sect.

Summary and Conclusions

The data provided by these respondents help to reveal and clarify several of the impacts chat the war has had on Lebanon's sectarian bureaucracy. The ability of the political leadership to direct the bureaucracy has been impaired by the erosion of the usual chain of authority relations necessary to the functioning of a bureaucratic organization. This is seen in the respondents' perceptions of a decline in presidential authority, an increased lack of coordination among administrative units, a weakening of supervisory authority, and the inability of the overseeing agencies to perform their prescribed functions. Functional specialization continues in theory, but in practice the absence of a central executive authority has limited the ability of the bureaucracy to coordinate the work of organizational units.

The data also help to document the extent of physical dislocation which has occurred in the work force and work place due to the war. These effects include: high rates of absenteeism; the semi-permanent loss of much of the qualified work force; the unplanned reassignment of many officials; and the relocation of many government offices.

Bureaucratic behavior has also been affected by the conflict. In the view of the respondents, the continuing conflict appears to have influenced employee -attitudes in ways that are likely to be detrimental to organizational performance. Respondents report lower standards of professional conduct and a lessening of career attachment on the part of civil servants. In addition, respondents report an abandoning of the formal rules governing employee conduct and behavior. A majority of the respondents -report major increases in economic corruption on the part of citizens and officials alike. They also report increased political and external pressures on the bureaucracy and increased acquiescence on the part of officials in the face of such pressures. They see a decline in the use of technical competence as a criterion in personnel decisions, arid an increase in the importance of personal and political influence as the basis for appointment and advancement within the bureaucracy.

Finally, respondents report that the war has brought an increased emphasis on the all-important concern of sectarianism within the bureaucracy. In the view of respondents there is an increased tendency, as a result of the conflict, for officials to see bureaucratic actions in sectarian terms, and to respond on a sectarian basis in dealings with citizens. Respondents also report a cooling of relationships between bureaucrats of differing sects. Furthermore, when the perceptions of Christian and Muslim bureaucrats are compared on these measures of the war's impact there is considerable agreement between them as to the conflict's impact.

In terms of bureaucratic theory, these findings suggest that the conflict in Lebanon has resulted in the widespread erosion of many formal, Weberian, elements of bureaucracy which had established themselves in a limited way in the Lebanese administration. The impacts reported by the respondents indicate that virtually all the elements associated in the literature with the theoretical model of bureaucracy (a well-defined hierarchy of authority, impartiality, technical competence, etc.) are under attack in Lebanon. This suggests that the Lebanese bureaucracy is in the process of reverting from a semi-modern, or modernizing organization, to a fragmented organization emphasizing sectarian and other ideological values. In this process the bureaucracy has lost much of its ability to function on a national basis.

This reversion appears to be primarily a function of the conflict in the larger society, abetted by certain traditional anti-bureaucratic tendencies in Lebanese administration, for example the traditional problem of corruption. Furthermore, there is nothing in the findings of the present research that suggests that bureaucracy has significant internal resources with which to resist the pressures generated by the political conflict. In fact, evidence from the preconflict reform period suggests that the bureaucracy has functioned most effectively when provided with strong presidential leadership. In this sense, the Findings support the current notion, implicit in the literature, of the bureaucracy as a non-actor in the current political crisis.

However, given changes in the political situation, the condition of the bureaucracy may be a potentially important variable in the Lebanese political equation. For instance, the continued survival of the bureaucracy may facilitate the possibility of a solution along the lines of a renegotiated National Fact (an approach presently being encouraged by the Syrians). On -the other hand, destruction or replacement of the national administrative system would seem to imply a more drastic solution to the conflict, perhaps the permanent partition of the nation (an approach supported by some of the more extreme factions).13 If this is the case, then the condition of the bureaucracy, its ability to maintain itself, and its capacity to mobilize and direct resources., are topics worthy of fuller consideration.


1 For a rich source of such anecdotes see Jonathan C. Randal, Going All the Way: Christian Warlords, Israeli Adventurers and the War in Lebanon (New York- Vintage Books , 1984). Back
2 For a more detailed discussion of the formal structure of Lebanese bureaucracy set Adnan Iskander, Bureaucracy in Lebanon (Beirut: American University of Beirut, 1964). Back
3 The Weberian idealtype is fully examined in Richard H. Hall, "Interorganizational Structural Variation: Applications of the Bureaucratic Model", Administrative Science Quarterly 7 (no. 3, 1962): 295-308 Back
4 The French administrative model is presented in detail in Ezra N. Suleiman, Politics, Power and Bureaucracy in France: the Administrative Elite (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1974). Back
5 For a discussion of these concepts see Daniel Lerner, The Passing of Traditional Society: Modernizing the Middle East (Glencoe, Illinois: The Free Press, 1958). Back
6 For a more complete discussion of pre-war reform efforts see Iskander E. Bashir, Civil Service Reform in Lebanon (Beirut: American University of Beirut, 1977). Back
7 Adeed Dawisha, Syria and the Lebanese Crisis (New York: St. Martins Press, 1980): p. 21 Back
8 Unless otherwise indicated percentages refer to the total sample n - 289, Back
9 For a general discussion of the war's impact on the labor force see Nadim G. Khalaf and Gaston V. Rimlinger, "The Response of the Lebanese Labour Force to Economic Dislocation", Middle Eastern Studies IS (no. 7, 1982): 258-279 Back
10 N. Joseph Cayer, Managing Human Resources: An Introduction to Public Personnel Administration (New York. St Martins, 1980). Back
11 For discussion of this aspect of sectarianism see Enver M. Koury, The Crisis in the Lebanese System: Confessionalism and Chaos (Washington, D.C.: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, 1976): p. 87. Back
12 Maroun Kisirwani, Patron-Client Politics and Bureaucratic Corruption: the Cast of Lebanon (Bloomington: International Development Research Center, 1974). Back
13 Some possible solutions are considered in Elie Salem, Prospects for a New Lebanon (American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, 1982). Back


Table 1 - What has been the effect pf the conflict in Lebanon on presidential authority over the bureaucracy?


Christian Muslim
Decreased 51 78% 42 76%
No Change 14 22% 10 19%
Increased 0 0% 3 5%


65 100% 55 100%

Chi square = 4.575
Significance .2057

Table 2 - What has been the effect of the conflict in Lebanon on the career commitment of government employees?


Christian Muslim
More commited 16 25% 20 36%
No Change 11 17% 14 25%
More Likely to Leave 38 58% 22 39%


65 100% 55 100%

Chi square = 4.4261
Significance .1094

Table 3 - How has the conflict in Lebanon affected personal relationships between colleagues of different sects


Christian Muslim
No Change 23 37% 25 44%
Cooler 33 53% 30 53%
Stronger 6 10% 2 3%


62 100% 57 100%

Chi square = 2.019
Significance .3643

Table 4 - What has been the effect of the conflict in Lebanon on the prevalence of bripes and payoffs


Christian Muslim
No Change 13 20% 10 18%
Increased Somewhat 16 25% 20 36%
Increased Greatly 36 55% 25 46%


65 100% 55 100%

Chi square = 1.99
Significance .3679

Table 5 - What has been the effect of the conflict in Lebanon on secterian concerns in public administration?


Christian Muslim
No Change 8 12% 18 33%
Increased Somewhat 12 18% 12 22%
Increased Greatly 45 70% 25 45%


65 100% 55 100%

Chi square = 8.788
Significance .0124

Table 6 - What has been the effect of conflict in Lebanon on political interference in administrative matters?


Christian Muslim
No Change 10 15% 8 15%
Increased Somewhat 17 25% 25 45%
Increased Greatly 40 60% 22 40%


67 100% 55 100%

Chi square = 5.848
Significance .0537

Table 7 - Has the conflict in Lebanon resulted in increased outside pressure on employees?


Christian Muslim
Less Pressure 1 2% 7 13%
No change 20 30% 6 11%
Somewhat More Pressure 13 20% 19 35%
Much More 32 49% 23 45%


66 100% 55 100%

Chi square = 13.7498
Significance .0033

Table 8 - What has been the effect of the conflict in Lebanon on employee professionalism


Christian Muslim
Increased 4 7% 1 2%
No Change 12 20% 3 5%
Decreased 45 74% 52 93%


61 100% 56 100%

Chi square 7.505
Significance .0235

Table 9 - Do government employees submit more to outside pressures as a result of the conflict in Lebanon?


Christian Muslim
Less 3 5% 7 12%
No Change 19 29% 7 12%
Somewhat More 12 18% 19 33%
Much More 32 48% 24 42%


66 100% 57 100%

Chi square 9.2529
Significance .0261


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