The Politics of Expertise in Latin America: Antecedents and Actualities
All public activities are in some broad measure political, and all require certain
specialised skills, which may be termed “expertise”. But over time and space the realm of
the specifically “political” may either expand or contract. Equally, what counts as expertise,
and how much autonomy it will be granted, also varies over time and space. Horsemanship,
literacy, oratory, textual exegesis, and an understanding of global financial derivatives have
each been regarded as the hallmark of the modern expert in one setting or another. The relationship
between the “generalist” politician and the “specialist” expert is one of the most
ancient and recurring themes in political science. Effective and durable rule requires the enlistment
of a range of competences, yet government is not reducible to technique. How then
are the rulers to be guided by their advisers without being usurped by them?
JEL Classification: J24; D72; D82.
Keywords: Technogracy specialization election