Who we are and what we do
The National Institute of Public Administration (in Spanish: “Instituto Nacional de Administración Pública - INAP”) is an autonomous body within the national government of Spain, attached to the Department of Finance and Civil Service. It has a long-standing tradition of more than seventy years in the public interest, as its origins date back to 1940. The National Institute of Public Administration is the leading government’s Civil Service training school in Spain. It started as a simple “Centre” in 1958, but over the following decades its size and responsibilities have grown in a substantial manner. Namely, in 1987, it was merged with the pre-existing Institute for studies on local government (Instituto de Estudios de Administración Local), a body founded in 1940. Its current by-laws have been approved by a royal-decree approved in 2000, as amended.
While the main tasks of the INAP have traditionally been the training and improvement of the Civil Service, nowadays it performs a wide array of activities, that may be classified in the following areas: (a) the recruitment into the Civil Service; (b) training and professional improvement of public employees; (c) research and publishing, and (d) international relations. In addition, the Institute carries out a wide variety of educational and academic activities, intergovernmental cooperation and the analysis of public policies through conferences, meetings and seminars.
A broad overview of such activities in herein provided.
The institute is headed by a Director, responsible for strategic management, supervision and coordination of the different activities and services of the Institute. He also represents the organization in its external relations. On the other hand, the Secretary-General is in charge of the financial management of the Institute´s own budget (in 2011, roughly 18,3 million€). She also administers the INAP´s personnel and training facilities. In this respect, the INAP has seventeen training classrooms (three for computer-training), one conference hall and three meeting rooms in its Madrid office. In Alcalá de Henares, our facilities include seven classrooms, a computer room, and a conference hall. The total capacity of both offices combined amounts to 700 places for students.
The activity of the Institute is based upon the daily effort of its staff, currently composed of 229 employees.
Training and professional improvement for public employees still lays at the heart of the INAP´s activities, and this is the function for which the Institute is mostly recognised. The training activity carried out by the Institute is structured around six major training programmes:
- training for managers in the public sector
- training for public employees with middle management, administration and clerical duties
- training for civil servants working in local governments
- training in E-Government
- training in Languages, both foreign and other Spanish, co-official tongues
- courses for trainee civil servants
The INAP endeavours to improve permanently its quality training standards and holds cooperation with other prestigious international schools and institutes, such as the French ENA, the National School of Government (UK) and the European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA). During the year 2010, the Institute provided roughly 52.000 training hours, which were addressed to almost 25.000 public employees from all levels of governments, as well as to international civil servants.
Recruitment into the Civil Service is one of the major tasks of the INAP. Every year, the Institute runs, in a centralised way, several fair and open competitions for different grades and ranks of the State Civil Service, from clerical staff to managers. This is made through the Permanent Selection Committee (Comisión permanente de selección), or through specific, ad hoc recruitment boards (for the upper ranks of the Civil Service). In 2010, and in accordance with the annual national announcement of civil service vacancies, the Institute managed eleven recruitment processes with an overall figure of more than 13,000 candidates, for a total of 395 vacancies.
Besides recruitment and training in the civil service, the INAP promotes research and studies regarding government and the different levels on public administration, from an interdisciplinary perspective. Since its inception, the Institute has carried out an important publishing activity in its areas of reference, and has produced more than 700 books. All of them have been digitalized and are available to the public. In addition, the Institute currently publishes four periodicals, with a legal and public management perspective on government, public administration and public policies:
- Documentación Administrativa
- Revista de Estudios de la Administración local y autonómica
- Cuadernos de Derecho Público
- Gestión y análisis de políticas públicas
Furthermore, the research activity of the Institute is carried out by establishing Groups of Experts, awarding of research prizes and fellowships (namely the INAP-Fulbright program), and through the organization of conferences and seminars.
The Institute is provided with a magnificent library, specialised in Public Administration, Government and Public Law, with more than 230,000 volumes and some 1500 periodicals. The library also holds an Antique Books Collection, which comprises more than 9,000 volumes written between the XVIth and the XIXth centuries.
Since its establishment in the fifties, the INAP has maintained an extensive international cooperation activity with counterpart organisations, both national and international, especially with Latin American countries. In this domain, the Institute:
- develops training programmes for civil servants from Latin American countries
- holds bilateral relations with foreign training schools and institutes.
- takes part in international organisations specialising in Public Administration such as the International Institute for Administrative Sciences (IIAS) and the Latin American Centre of Administration for the Development (CLAD).