Life & General · PhD Progress & Thoughts

Bureaucracy

To my Dear Readers,

For those like myself raised on jokes that addressed the challenges of Bureaucracy and paper-pushing, here is a refresher on why it’s not always a laughing matter.

Sure, this post comes off the back of my missing ‘the fine print’ and thus having payment for work withheld for weeks because I hadn’t fulfilled one task for an administrative activity. Regard this tidbit of information as you wish.
My point, in rebuttal to the linked video (and usage of Bureaucratic administration) is that while Bureaucracy is necessary for the concept of efficiency and fairness, I dislike how easily fixable many of the entanglements are sometimes. A quick phone call, a short conversation, or a polite word can make the frustrations of multiple back-and-forth interactions with a photocopier and a Justice of the Peace to certify documents much more pleasant. Yet in many situations, such as the ones found in hospitals and government departments dealing with financial assistance or aid, this strict adherence to administrative protocol can be prohibitive.

As those working with Australia’s homeless population could ascertain, administrative duties cannot always be fulfilled when the applicant has no access to their birth certificate, a computer or a phone. While I myself am not in such a dire situation, echoes of this issue remain in larger institutions where the need for forms and filing impede important work, such as the recuperation of a surgeon after a long day. (A surgeon has lest time to rest and/or see patients if they have 10 forms per surgery to fill out at the end of the day, for the convenience of medical administration). For less dire situations, such as a certified ID card submitted to a new department after ID had been submitted to a different department less than 5 months earlier, this impediment to other work is little more than an irritation. I attempt to keep a good sense of humour about the whole thing, maintaining my polite approach, but this is one of the things that bothers me.

Long story short, I recently had an issue with Bureaucracy that may or may not have been my fault, and in retaliation I’m writing a grumpy blog post until I can resolve the issue tomorrow.

Until next time,

-Madeleine

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