Difference between Bureaucratic and Participatory Management

Before going to the difference between bureaucratic and participatory management in administration in developing countries, we should have an idea about bureaucratic management and participatory management.

Bureaucratic Management:


Bureaucratic management is an administrative policy-making group and non-elective government officials’ body. It is operated an organization effectively and rationally. It also calls the Weberian bureaucracy. In bureaucratic management has the following principles. Such as: –

  • Proper division of labor
  • Chain of command
  • Separation of personal and official property
  • Application of consistent and complete rules
  • Selection and promotion based on qualifications

Read more: Difference between Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research.

Participatory Management:


Participatory management is the exercise of empowering members of a group like employees of a business or citizens of a civic, to contribute to managerial decision-making. The features of participatory management are: –

  • Provided higher status to employees
  • Provided psychological satisfaction to employees
  • Universally recognized concept
  • Brings employees and management closer
  • Beneficial to both parties

Read more: Difference between Cabinet and Council of Ministers

Difference between Bureaucratic and Participatory Management:


The difference between bureaucratic and participatory management in administration in the context of developing countries. These difference between bureaucratic and participatory management have happened from several perspectives. Such as: –

  1. Objective Perspective
  2. Scope Perspective
  3. Nature Perspective
  4. Structural Perspective and
  5. Process Perspective

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1. Objective Perspective:


The difference between bureaucratic and participatory management from an objective perspective. The objective of bureaucratic management is the total change of the system. Whereas participatory management’s focus is to uphold the status quo.

2. Scope Perspective:


The bureaucratic management is minimal. And participatory management is extensive as political, social, economic, administrative, etc.

3. Nature Perspective:


In the context of nature, the difference between bureaucratic and participatory management in administration in the context of developing are as follows:

  • Participatory management is innovative in nature, involving creative and experimental ideas. But bureaucratic management has a lack of positive thinking in nature.
  • The characteristic of bureaucratic management is upper-class orientation. Participatory management deals with all classes.
  • In the difference between bureaucratic and participatory management in administration, bureaucratic management is desk oriented. Participatory management is field-oriented.
  • Bureaucratic management is an executive type, and participatory management is the managerial type.
  • Participatory management is dynamic. The bureaucratic management is static.
  • Bureaucratic management has created a dichotomy between politics and administration. And participatory management is denied dichotomy.
  • The concept of accountability draws much attention to participatory management. In bureaucratic management, accountability is not a necessity.
  • The focus of participatory management is downward. But that of bureaucratic management is upward.
  • Bureaucratic management plays a reactive role. Measures are taken when problems arise. On the other hand, participatory management is proactive in nature. It thinks of the problem and takes precautionary measures before its commencement.
  • There is strict adherence to and compliance with existing rules, regulations, and procedures in bureaucratic management. It always goes by procedures. Management is always afraid of taking any pioneering effort. On the other hand, participatory management goes through experimentation. It is concerned with experience-based pioneering effort bringing about a change in society.
  • Another attribute of the bureaucratic system is held by the paternalistic of Maa-Baap attitude and the bureaucracy’s role. This attitude of bureaucracy and the dependence obedience attitude event the elected representative of the people are visible in many places. Participatory management denies it and seeks cooperation from all.
  • Bureaucratic management arises largely from the fact that attention is directed toward the organizational structures. It suffers from an attempt to avoid value judgment. It is mainly concerned with “what is” rather than with improved performance. Participatory management attaches importance to the process with proper emphasis on human attitudes.
  • Bureaucratic management often concerns with partial reform. At the same time, participatory management does not appreciate it.

Link: Difference Between Management and Administration

4. Structural Perspective:


The structure is the functional outline of the system. It defines who is where and how of the organization. The difference between bureaucratic and participatory management in respect of structure. Such as: –

  • The first difference between bureaucratic and participatory management from a structural perspective. Bureaucratic management’s structure is a straightforward and very complex structure of participatory management.
  • In the difference between bureaucratic and participatory management, bureaucratic management is followed strictly by the departmental form of management. Very less attention is drawn to participatory management.
  • Participatory management requires local government units linking. And bureaucratic management does not require to link with local government.
  • Another basic difference between bureaucratic and participatory management lies in planning organizations in participatory management as they need not planned change. Hence, bureaucratic management lacks in the sense of development. This body of participatory management is instituted in collaboration and co-operation with the members of different ministries and departments.

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5. Process Perspective:


There are several important differences between bureaucratic and participatory management concerning the numerous process perspective. Such as: –

  • In bureaucratic management, leadership is authoritative. But in participatory management, leadership is legitimacy and cooperation.
  • Decision making centralizes in bureaucratic management. And in participatory management, participative decision making is participative. This is an important difference between bureaucratic and participatory management.
  • Participatory management uses the multi-dimensional communication system. And bureaucratic management uses the unidimensional communication system.
  • In the difference between bureaucratic and participatory management, bureaucratic management is less coordination oriented, and participatory management is strong coordination oriented.
  • The methods of motivation in participatory management are indirect. In bureaucratic management, it is direct in the difference between bureaucratic and participatory process perspective management at a motivational topic.
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