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[Guide] Welcome to the WA Bureaucracy, Such a Lovely Place

Where WA members debate how to improve the world, one resolution at a time.
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Sciongrad
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[Guide] Welcome to the WA Bureaucracy, Such a Lovely Place

Postby Sciongrad » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:34 pm

A Comprehensive Guide to the World Assembly's vast and ever growing bureaucracy


Image

An artist's rendition of the bureaucrat's natural habitat.



So what's a "bureaucracy"?

Simply put, a bureaucracy is an administrative policy-making institution composed of non-elected officials, which creates rules, provides oversight, or simply runs essential administrative tasks. Bureaucracies are often broken up into smaller, more specialized units, like bureaus, departments, committees, etc. For example, the World Health Authority is a committee responsible for coordinating the World Assembly's health policy, and has been assigned many duties by several resolutions. While there are technical differences between these smaller units, they're negligible in the World Assembly, and you're given a lot of flexibility over how you want to name your committee (subject to some rules discussed later). As the title suggests, the World Assembly bureaucracy is vast, with more than 50 individual committees currently active.

"Non-elected officials?" So how do I join a committee?

Unfortunately, you can't. As far as the General Assembly is concerned, a committee is a legislative tool, not necessarily its own part of the game. While anyone is free to roleplay committee proceedings, these roleplays are generally considered non-canonical, and decisions made in the roleplay are not binding on other nations.

So who staffs the bureaucracy?

Because the bureaucracy is purely a legislative tool, it's not all that important as to who staffs a committee. However, for the purpose of IC consistency and preventing unresolvable debates on effectiveness, impropriety, or competence, it's generally accepted that committees are staffed by gnomes, who have unquestionable ethical fortitude and technical expertise. If you're not comfortable with committees staffed by little people (RUDE), you can always just roleplay them as being staffed by actual bureaucrats.

So why do we need committees?

Oversight

There are several reasons that we need committees, but perhaps the most important is playing the part of an impartial authority meant to provide some form of assurance when resolving issues where individual member states may have different favorable results. For example, let's take the Nuclear Testing Oversight Agency (NTOA). The policy goal put forth by the resolution that created the NTOA is a very reasonable one that most nations would want to see followed - that is, ensuring nuclear weapons are tested properly and responsibly. However, without assurance by a committee like the NTOA, it wouldn't be in the best interest of individual states to restrict how they test nuclear weapons because for all they know, other states are not adhering to the standards established by the resolution. That's where the NTOA comes in - now that member states know there is oversight, they can rest assured knowing that their neighbors in Bigtopia aren't at an advantage through irresponsible nuclear weapons testing.

Rule Making

As resolution authors, we are constrained to 3,500 characters (including spaces, code, etc.). This is not a lot of room to write legislation, especially in complicated areas. Therefore, authors often use the World Assembly's bureaucracy for a more practical purpose - saving space. Take, for example, the International Transport Safety Committee (ITSC), created by General Assembly Resolution #34, International Transport Safety. Establishing the nuances of international transport safety in 3,500 characters or less is, for all intents and purpose, impossible. Therefore, the committee is given the very broad task of "enact[ing] regulations pertaining to the safety, communications, markings & signals, distress signals, loading limits, emergency protocols, the provision of life saving equipment, mechanical inspection protocol, standards of accident investigation, and search & rescue procedures for international shipping, aviation, and railways." While it's assumed these regulations will be reasonable, it's always good to toss in phrases like "reasonable," "practical and necessary," and others that will ensure the committee doesn't create frivolous regulations. Obviously, if it can be helped, rules should be written out in the text of the resolution, but oftentimes, we lack the room or technical expertise to create detailed policy on our own, and so we use the bureaucracy to help us out.

Resolving Disputes and Carrying Out Other Quasi-Judicial Functions

Whereas committees can take on a quasi-legislative function (the type described above), committees can also take on a quasi-judicial function (even both simultaneously). Which is to say committees can act as a form of arbitration to resolve disputes, enforce rules with penalties, and so on. For example, the World Assembly Trade Commission had its duties expanded by General Assembly Resolution #208, Resolving WA Trade Disputes, to include "non-binding mediation and binding arbitration" of trade disputes. Another example of a quasi-judicial committee was the International Trade Agency, which was tasked by the since-repealed General Assembly Resolution #118, Ethics in International Trade, to assign ethical ad valorem tariffs on a case-by-case basis, considering a list of relevant factors.

Assistance and Supplementing Policy Initiatives

Sometimes, a committee doesn't necessarily need to solve an issue to be useful. Sometimes, committees can assist member nations in enacting policy. For example, the World Assembly Commission on Biological Agents, created by General Assembly Resolution #242, Biological Warfare Convention, supplements the policy espoused by the resolution. Rather than writing rules or arbitrating, it assists member nations in implementing policies relevant to biological weapons, like assisting in the training of personnel and developing evacuation plans.

Wow, committees are the coolest! Why doesn't every resolution have one?

From a IC perspective, committees aren't necessarily cheap. Therefore, if it can be avoided, committees should not be created. Broadly speaking, committees should not be created if the policy is either self-enforcing (where no reasonable nation wouldn't follow the rules set forth by a resolution), or where all of the rules and regulations necessary can be fit in the character limit. Unnecessary committees give the idea of bureaucracy a very bad rep. "A committee by any other name would serve in a quasi-legislative, quasi-judicial, or oversight capacity as sweet," quoth Shakespeare, probably.

I want to legislate on a policy area, but a committee already exists for that topic. Do I need to make a new one?

No, you don't. As a matter of fact, you shouldn't. As I said before, try to avoid creating new committees if it can be helped. Assigning new duties to old committees is very possible, and it's as simple as writing a clause along the lines of "Extending the duty of the World Assembly Kitty Committee to include the following duties."

What do I name my committee?

Your committee's name should very clearly indicate its purpose. For example, a hypothetical committee on urban development policy should not be called the Apartment Department, because we don't really know what it does. The World Assembly Committee on Urban Development, on the other hand, sounds professional and conveys its purposes effectively. Furthermore, committee names cannot be abused to circumvent other rules. Making a committee name an acronym for your nation's name is illegal under the branding rule.

Great! So now that I know what's what, can I go create committees?

It's not necessarily that simple. A committee is a legislative tool and cannot be the focus of the legislation on its own. By which I mean a resolution must be able to exist (solely in the legal sense) without a committee. Technically, this means a resolution can create a committee and then tack on an "urging member nations to do so and so." I don't necessarily advise this, but there are probably circumstances where a committee is more important than any actual in-resolution policy making.

I think I've got the basics... What if I have another question?

If you have any other questions, feel free to post it in this thread and I, or other players, will try to answer your question.
Last edited by Sciongrad on Mon Feb 08, 2016 11:22 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Sciongrad
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Postby Sciongrad » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:35 pm

Bureaucracy:Established by:
Office of Building Management (OBM)GAR#8
General Accounting Office (GAO)GAR#17
World Assembly Trade Commission (WATC)GAR#26
World Health Authority (WHA)GAR#31
International Transport Safety Committee (ITSC)GAR#34
World Assembly Demining Agency (WADA)GAR#40
Health Research and Development Division (HRDD)GAR#41
World Assembly Nautical Commission (WANC)GAR#47
International Humanitarian Aid Coordinating Commission (IHACC)GAR#51
International Food Welfare Organization (IFWO)GAR#52
International Trade Agency (ITA)GAR#52
Epidemic and Pandemic Alert and Response Center (EPARC)GAR#53
Nuclear Disaster Response Organization (NDRO)GAR#60
World Assembly Food and Drug Regulatory Agency (WAFDRA)GAR#62
World Assembly Endangered Species Protection Committee (WAESPC)GAR#66
International Postal Union (IPU)GAR#73
Global Emigration, Security, Travel And Passport, Organisation (GESTAPO)GAR#76
Universal Library Coalition (ULC)/Universal Library Coalition Executive Committee (ULCEC)GAR#78
Clinical Excellence Commission (CEC)GAR#82
Museums of Musical Heritage (MoMH)GAR#86
World Assembly Scientific Program (WASP)GAR#87
International Meteorological OrganizationGAR#87
International Measurements Institute (IMI)GAR#88
Universal Patent Archive (UPA)GAR#93
World Microcredit Foundation (WMF)GAR#94
Microgrant Institute (MI)GAR#94
World Assembly Responsible Offshore Drilling Administration (WARODA)GAR#95
World Assembly Oil Transportation Committee (WAOTC)GAR#98
International Courthouse for Multilateral Prosecution (ICMP)GAR#99
International Criminal Court (ICC)GAR#102
International Drug Education Agency (IDEA)GAR#103
Database of Clinical Treatments Under Study (DOCTUS)GAR#103
World Assembly Disaster Bureau (WADB)GAR#105
International Bureau of Water Safety (IBWS)GAR#107
International Identity Database (IID)GAR#110
International Gemological Agency (IGA)GAR#113
International Gemological Laboratory (IGL)GAR#113
Nuclear Testing Oversight Agency (NTOA)GAR#119
Organization for Electoral Assistance (OEA)GAR#130
International Geological and Metallurigcal Laboratory (IGML)GAR#148
Genetically Modified Foods Database (GMFD)GAR#158
Office for Education Exchange (OEX)GAR#159
International Exposition Authority (IEA)GAR#172
Nuclear Energy Safety Commission (NESC)GAR#204
Biomedical Innovation Organization (BIO)GAR#219
Joint Water Resource Management Panel (JWRMP)GAR#223
World Assembly Development Foundation (WADF)GAR#226
Protection of Animal Welfare Society (PAWS)GAR#228
World Assembly Commission on Biological Agents (WACBA)GAR#242
International Automobile Emissions Commission (IAEC)GAR#257
World Assembly Chemical Weapons Commission (WACWC)GAR#272
World Assembly Trust for Cultural Heritage (WATCH)GAR#287
World Assembly Forest Commission (WAFC)GAR#291
World Assembly Disaster Board (WADB)GAR#296
World Assembly Adoption Authority (WAAA)GAR#297
Spill and Leak Disaster Administration (SaLDA)GAR#298
World Assembly Numismatics AuthorityGAR#307
International Mediation Foundation (IMF)GAR#348
Explosive Remnants of War Action Subcommittee (ERWAS)GAR#358
Last edited by Sciongrad on Sat Nov 19, 2016 7:29 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Defwa
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Postby Defwa » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:50 pm

Rolling in guides of late. The reuse of committee section needs an example. And links!
Your work is as always appreciated.
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Sciongrad
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Postby Sciongrad » Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:15 pm

Defwa wrote:Rolling in guides of late.

The recent guides are actually what motivated me to finally write this one.

The reuse of committee section needs an example. And links!

Fair enough. I'll also add links soon. That, unfortunately, slipped my mind.
Last edited by Sciongrad on Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Ainocra
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Postby Ainocra » Tue Aug 12, 2014 10:34 pm

OOC:

I like it, gave me a chuckle
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Bananaistan
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Postby Bananaistan » Wed Aug 13, 2014 2:59 am

*furiously drafts a proposal to set up the Apartment Department*

Good, informative read!
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:59 am

"Shame on you, ambassador. This doesn't appear to have a Central Bureaucracy stamp approving the use of the Central Bureaucracy image and/or likeness. I'm afraid you'll have to take this down and destroy it, submit a Post-Offense Permission Form with the WACB, in triplicate, including a copy of this guide, six forms of personal identification, and a notarized copy of a 1978 New York Times Sunday edition to prove you're from this time-continuum, wait 20-80 business days, file a Request for Status Update form, in triplicate, wait until you receive your Approval Notification, acknowledge Receipt, and then rebuild your guide under Central Bureaucracy Rules and Guidelines, which can be requested, in hard copy or electronically, with a 47b Freedom of Information Request Form!" :p

OOC: Solid guide. Well written, and concise. Well done!

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Wrapper
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Postby Wrapper » Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:08 am

Separatist Peoples wrote:"Shame on you, ambassador. This doesn't appear to have a Central Bureaucracy stamp approving the use of the Central Bureaucracy image and/or likeness. I'm afraid you'll have to take this down and destroy it, submit a Post-Offense Permission Form with the WACB, in triplicate, including a copy of this guide, six forms of personal identification, and a notarized copy of a 1978 New York Times Sunday edition to prove you're from this time-continuum, wait 20-80 business days, file a Request for Status Update form, in triplicate, wait until you receive your Approval Notification, acknowledge Receipt, and then rebuild your guide under Central Bureaucracy Rules and Guidelines, which can be requested, in hard copy or electronically, with a 47b Freedom of Information Request Form!"

You forgot about Form 27B-stroke-6. Bloody paperwork....

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Hakio
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Postby Hakio » Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:12 am

The nation of Hakio is entangled in beautiful golden pigtails of bureaucracy. :blush:

Drinks more whiskey.
Last edited by Hakio on Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Separatist Peoples
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:15 am

Wrapper wrote:
Separatist Peoples wrote:"Shame on you, ambassador. This doesn't appear to have a Central Bureaucracy stamp approving the use of the Central Bureaucracy image and/or likeness. I'm afraid you'll have to take this down and destroy it, submit a Post-Offense Permission Form with the WACB, in triplicate, including a copy of this guide, six forms of personal identification, and a notarized copy of a 1978 New York Times Sunday edition to prove you're from this time-continuum, wait 20-80 business days, file a Request for Status Update form, in triplicate, wait until you receive your Approval Notification, acknowledge Receipt, and then rebuild your guide under Central Bureaucracy Rules and Guidelines, which can be requested, in hard copy or electronically, with a 47b Freedom of Information Request Form!"

You forgot about Form 27B-stroke-6. Bloody paperwork....

"Dammit! Now I'll have to complete a Request for Revision Form 86-Bravo, submit it to all parties who have seen the error, obtain permission from the WACB Revision bureau, through formal tribunal, to make the corrections, and then submit a 404/Purple Documentation Slate, in carved granite, to the Mount Sinai Division to set the record straight...and their office is only open for 20 minutes once a month. No appointments."

What's the problem with lawyer jokes?
Lawyer's don't think they're funny, and no one else thinks they're jokes.

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Wrapper
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Postby Wrapper » Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:20 am

But what if a 404/Purple Documentation Slate is not found?

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Separatist Peoples
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:25 am

Wrapper wrote:But what if a 404/Purple Documentation Slate is not found?

"As far as we know...it never has been!" *Twilight Zone music plays*

What's the problem with lawyer jokes?
Lawyer's don't think they're funny, and no one else thinks they're jokes.

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Hakio
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Postby Hakio » Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:36 am

You unlock this file with the key of the Secret Committee. Inside it is another dimension; a dimension of scandals, a dimension of conspiracies, a dimension of mind control. You're moving into a land of both puppet masters and agents controlling things and ideas. You've just crossed over into ... THE CONSPIRACY ZONE.

Common men was never meant to see that file.
Last edited by Hakio on Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Omigodtheykilledkenny
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Postby Omigodtheykilledkenny » Wed Aug 13, 2014 7:05 am

Sciongrad wrote:Anyway, please feel free to make any suggestions or criticisms if I've left anything out or if you feel there's inaccuracy.

This and the committees list should be in the same place. Maybe add it to your second post?

Also, me jealous. You get so much enthusiastic feedback, and all I get is a few stick-in-the-muds telling me I'm too snarky. :p

Ah, well. Party on Wayne! \m/
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The Dark Star Republic
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Postby The Dark Star Republic » Wed Aug 13, 2014 7:16 am

Sciongrad wrote:As the title suggests, the World Assembly bureaucracy is vast, with more than 50 individual committees currently active.

This should be the link to your active committees list.

The only other main point I can think of is how repeals affect committees.

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Araraukar
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Postby Araraukar » Wed Aug 13, 2014 12:11 pm

The Dark Star Republic wrote:The only other main point I can think of is how repeals affect committees.

OOC: Was that agreed on yet? There was a thread for it somewhere around here.

Omigodtheykilledkenny wrote:1) No need for "OOC" tags in an OOC thread.

Wasn't entirely sure it was an OOC thread, from the above comments. :P
Last edited by Araraukar on Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Omigodtheykilledkenny
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Postby Omigodtheykilledkenny » Wed Aug 13, 2014 1:11 pm

1) No need for "OOC" tags in an OOC thread.

2) It's always been the rule the committees survive repeals, if other standing resolutions use them. What remains to be seen is if committees can be re-established after all resolutions that formerly used them have been repealed. A very rare occurrence, to be sure.
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Postby Ainocra » Wed Aug 13, 2014 7:04 pm

Omigodtheykilledkenny wrote:
Sciongrad wrote:Anyway, please feel free to make any suggestions or criticisms if I've left anything out or if you feel there's inaccuracy.

This and the committees list should be in the same place. Maybe add it to your second post?

Also, me jealous. You get so much enthusiastic feedback, and all I get is a few stick-in-the-muds telling me I'm too snarky. :p

Ah, well. Party on Wayne! \m/




I could throw popcorn at Scion if you like :)
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Postby Ardchoille » Thu Aug 14, 2014 6:57 am

The idea of reconstituting a committee whose original Resoolution has been repealed doesn't seem to be causing any outrage, insomnia or even particular interest, so we may as well go for it. I'll put it in the Committees part of the Rules and Sciongrad is welcome to add it to his Bureaucracy Guide.

EDIT: http://forum.nationstates.net/viewtopic.php?p=21346710#p21346710.
Last edited by Ardchoille on Thu Aug 14, 2014 8:06 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Sciongrad
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Postby Sciongrad » Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:42 pm

Ainocra wrote:I could throw popcorn at Scion if you like :)

Hooligans these days, with their throwing things and making noise. :p

The Dark Star Republic wrote:The only other main point I can think of is how repeals affect committees.

This is a good point. I'll add that shortly, along with links.

Omigodtheykilledkenny wrote:This and the committees list should be in the same place. Maybe add it to your second post?
That's a good point. I'm not sure whether to link the committees list to the guide or to merge them, although I do worry the guide won't be seen by that many if it's under the list.

Omigodtheykilledkenny wrote:Ah, well. Party on Wayne! \m/

Party on Garth. \m/

Ardchoille wrote:The idea of reconstituting a committee whose original Resoolution has been repealed doesn't seem to be causing any outrage, insomnia or even particular interest, so we may as well go for it. I'll put it in the Committees part of the Rules and Sciongrad is welcome to add it to his Bureaucracy Guide.

EDIT: http://forum.nationstates.net/viewtopic.php?p=21346710#p21346710.


Excellent! I'll add that shortly.
Last edited by Sciongrad on Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Omigodtheykilledkenny
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Postby Omigodtheykilledkenny » Mon Aug 25, 2014 11:39 am

Sciongrad wrote:
Omigodtheykilledkenny wrote:This and the committees list should be in the same place. Maybe add it to your second post?
That's a good point. I'm not sure whether to link the committees list to the guide or to merge them, although I do worry the guide won't be seen by that many if it's under the list.

Then just C&P it to this post, under the guide. Problem solved. :p

(Though a link would probably work just as well.)

About the list though, any chance of editing in all the resolutions that reuse committees? I was surprised to see WATC still in function, till I searched passed resolutions thread and found three resolutions still using it.
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Merni
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Postby Merni » Wed Sep 14, 2016 2:57 am

If you want to update this, here's the new ones. (From my post on 10 Ways to improve the WA)



[quote="Merni"Here are the new committees added since that was updated (i.e. since 291 GA), not including repealed resolutions.

Just noticed, also, that there are some resolutions in that list which were repealed, but not struck out from the list. Like 26 GA.

WA Adoption Authority (WAAA) - 297 GA
Spill and Leak Disaster Administration (SaLDA) - 298 GA
WA Numismatics Authority (WANA) - 307 GA
International Mediation Foundation - 348 GA
Explosive Remnants of War Action Subcommittee (ERWAS) (under IHACC) - 358 GA
[/quote]
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The Candy Of Bottles
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Postby The Candy Of Bottles » Fri Nov 18, 2016 3:09 pm

Well, #296 refers to the WA Disaster Board. I think that one popped up by mistake.
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Paradise Found // The Unibotian Life Expectancy Index // Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78 // The Polysemes of Nativeness;

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✯ Duty is Eternal, Justice is Imminent: UDL

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Excidium Planetis
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Posts: 7483
Founded: May 01, 2014
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Excidium Planetis » Mon Nov 21, 2016 9:01 pm

The link to GA#130 links to GA#119, which looks like a mistake given that #119 is right above it.
Ex-Ambassador (deceased): Evander Blackbourne
Ex-Ambassador: Cornelia Schultz, author of GA#355 and GA#368.
#MakeLegislationFunnyAgain
Singaporean Transhumans wrote:You didn't know about Excidium? The greatest space nomads in the NS multiverse with a healthy dose (read: over 9000 percent) of realism?
Saveyou Island wrote:"Warmest welcomes to the Assembly, ambassador. You'll soon learn to hate everyone here."
Imperium Anglorum wrote:Digital Network Defence is pretty meh
Tier 8, 7.5 nation, according to my index.Made of nomadic fleets.


News: None. Good, right?

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