Bureaucratic fragmentation

Other Names:
Bureaucratic feuding
Bureaucratic infighting
Official infighting
Bureaucratic rivalries
Bureaucratic jealousies
Bureaucratic factionalism

In order to respond to the proliferation of claimants, constituents and contending groups, and the complexity of issues, bureaucracies become fragmented and specialized; they then tend to compete with one another for information and resources. Lines of organization become lines of secrecy and loyalty: each department restricts information that might advance the competing interests of the others. Such fragmentation may smother initiative. In the case of the extensive bureaucracy of central government, this process may go so far that the whole mechanism becoming too ponderous to be capable of anything other than token change.


It was reported in 1993 that continued disagreement between Italian and American commanders of UN contingents in Somalia over military strategy had seriously undermined the effectiveness of the 27-nation combat force.

Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 16: Peace and Justice Strong Institutions
Problem Type:
D: Detailed problems
Date of last update
04.10.2020 – 22:48 CEST