The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper argues that the development of human capital in the public sector should be an important ingredient in any proposed set of “second-generation” reforms for Africa. In the post-colonial era the quality of governance has seriously declined, and the stock of human capital in the public sector has been eroded by a flight of human capital from many countries in response to compression of wages. The paper develops a simple theoretical framework to discuss these issues and the continent’s experience with foreign technical assistance in supplementing the low level of domestic human capital.