The relationship between the accountability and the liability of Italian civil servants has experienced three phases. First, there was liability without accountability, as long as the latter was centred in the hands of political organs. Later, it was sought to introduce the accountability of senior civil servants for the results obtained by the administration, as a form of accountability that was autonomous from political accountability, and based on the assessment and measurement of administrative performance. Ultimately, however, this project was betrayed. The old logic of liability absorbed the new culture of accountability of civil servants. The new rules, providing for duties related to administrative performance, have paradoxically multiplied the possible cases of liability for violations of such rules. As a result, Italian civil servants are caught in a dense web of rules of conduct and administrative sanctions for their violations. There is, therefore, a need for a strong legal culture, rather than for a managerial one.