Developments in public management theory


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50+ years of public management theory. A history of public management theory as it applies to public administration.

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  • Should lead managers and workers to the best conditions under which to create and nurture business. Concepts were adapted to fit government (test, promote, create position descriptions, evaluate)
  • Served as the standard through the 1950’s
  • Power actually comes from the bottomMostly securing the efforts of the employees through feedback leading to COMMS models
  • Researchers concluded that the workers worked harder because they thought that they were being monitored individually.These results have been met with much scrutiny most recently by popular economist Steven Levitt: Perhaps the most important lesson to be learned from the original Hawthorneexperiments is the power of a good story. The mythology surrounding the Hawthorne experiments arose largely absent careful data analysis, and has persisted for decades even in the face of strong evidence against it generated by Franke and Kaul (1978) and Jones (1992). While our research is probably no more likely than the previouspapers to put an end to such myths, at a minimum it raises the costs of propagating these stories among those who are concerned with scientific accuracy.This was where scientific management theory shifted to human behavior theory…struggle to ID with real science started here.
  • Significant progress occurs from 50’s to 70’s in testing these theories.Most of the work was done in business management then showed up in public managementThese comprise the “guts” of most theories going forward.Frederickson mentions Pfiffner and Sherwood (1960-1967) treatment of management theory which disappeared after this run for about 50 years
  • Theory X AssumptionsThe average person dislikes work and will try to avoid it.Most people need to be coerced, controlled, directed, and threatened with punishment to get them to work toward organizational goals.The average person wants to be directed, shuns responsibility, has little ambition, and seeks security above all.Motivate by economic incentivesTheory Y AssumptionsMost people do not inherently dislike work.People will exercise self-direction and self control to reach goals to which they are committed.Commitment to goals is a function of the rewards available.When conditions are favorable, the average person learns not only to accept but also to seek responsibility.Many people have the capacity to exercise a high degree of creativity and innovation in solving organizational problems.The intellectual potential of most individuals is only partially used in most organizations.Implications to Generational Communication Theory as of lateSeek to integrate individual and org goals and to emphasize latitude in performing tasks, they seek to make work interesting to others.Important to note Barnard, Hawthorne, Mc Gregor are all behavioral. Taylor and others previously were logic-based models of nonsystematic observation.
  • Group (usually organizational theory) Theory in classical management control is exercised by policy, rules, regulations and oversight. In group theory, the effective group will develop shared goals and values, norms behavior, customs, and traditions (Humans, 1950; Shaw, 1981 in Frederickson et al, 2012). Effective management in this context nurtures, cultivates, and supports group goals and norms that are compatible with and supportive of the institutions purposes and goals.
  • Role Theory suggests that each office or position is understood to be rational and defined in its relationship to others and the organization as a whole and often to the organization’s purposes. Role Theory studies people in common roles and measures persisting patterns between persons in those roles inside and outside the organization. Each officeholder performs in a role set, a contextual set of relationships with other who hold particular role expectations toward the officeholder in general (p 107-108). Managers acts as figureheads performing symbolic duties, as leaders building relationships with subordinates, or as liaisons emphasizing contacts at the edges of the organization. Based upon personal characteristics during time, managers take on combinations of these characteristics (Frederickson et al, 2012).
  • Communication Theory interacts with public management through efficacy of communication. Communication Theory is a mix of cybernetics, linguistics, and social psychology (Frederickson et al, 2012). The language resembles systems theory: input, throughputs, outputs, feedback loops, entropy, homeostasis. Regarding the work of a group or organization in communications theory, scholars anthropomorphize the organization to provide organizational guessing, organizational memory, organizational consciousness, organizational culture, organization will and organizational learning all based upon principals of communication (Frederickson et al, 2012. As it applies to public administration, theorists argue that most consist of downward communication, emphasizes task directives, and policies or procedures of the organization. Agency mission, vision, is typically neglected, resulting in poor function and morale of the organization. Effective communication with other agencies and agency publics is a part of managerial communication theory. Communication with external publics involves the publics to be segmented and messaging to be developed for each public as well as the ability to receive feedback via loop in order to develop and modify communication based on situational analysis. Often this doesn’t occur well in public administration. Listening is frequently a problem (Frederickson et al, 2012).
  • Claude Shannon, an engineer for the Bell Telephone Company, designed the most influential of all early communication models. His goal was to formulate a theory to guide the efforts of engineers in finding the most efficient way of transmitting electrical signals from one location to another (Shannon and Weaver, 1949). Later Shannon introduced a mechanism in the receiver which corrected for differences between the transmitted and received signal; this monitoring or correcting mechanism was the forerunner of the now widely used concept of feedback (information which a communicator gains from others in response to his own verbal behavior).
  • The key concept associated with this elaboration is that destinations provide feedback on the messages they receive such that the information sources can adapt their messages, in real time. This is an important elaboration, and as generally depicted, a radically oversimplified one. Feedback is a message (or a set of messages). The source of feedback is an information source. The consumer of feedback is a destination. Feedback is transmitted, received, and potentially disruptable via noise sources. None of this is visible in the typical depiction of the interactive model. This doesn't diminish the importance of feedback or the usefulness of elaborating Shannon's model to include it. People really do adapt their messages based on the feedback they receive. It is useful, however, to notice that the interactive model depicts feedback at a much higher level of abstraction than it does messages.
  • Most texts written treat budgeting and personnel staff functions as if they were managementLack any actual management theory, ignore any middle-range theories we discussed previouslyFrederickson mentions Pfiffner and Sherwood (1960-1967) treatment of management theory which disappeared after this run for about 50 years
  • Crafted doctrines to distinguish between public management principles that are scientifically verifiable and principles that are simple accepted and understood.As doctrines, they are influential in debating and carrying out policyNot hard data or necessarily “scientific”Logic of rhetoricSelective case-based empirical Missionary zeal…straw man, good vs. evil
  • Gudelis and Guodis (2011) describe NPM as follows:New Public Management is the business sector’s gift to public administration. It calls for a qualitative dynamic, in clear contrast to the traditional public administration model, typically characterized by a lack of flexibility and focused on process and procedure rather than goals and results. Among the primary aims of NPM reforms are the reduction of expenses to public administration and increased effectiveness and quality in the work of civil servants (p. 3).Limitations pointed out by Meier and O’Toole in 2009 are located on page 116/117.They are not just criticisms but rather, how to improve management practices through sustained, rigorous, empirical researchHARD data, not just a repack of principles, into doctrines, and under new acronyms
  • Leadership as Public ManagementPromoting buy-in and demonstrating commitment across the organization is greatly enhanced when the framework for leadership development incorporates employees at all levels of the organization. Even if resource limitations will only accommodate marginal programs, promoting opportunities for nonsupervisory employees to understand their role in leading at all levels provides a powerful platform from which to influence performance, culture, and climate (Westbrook, 2012 p. 3).Directly contrary to traditional public administration which focuses on efficiency and economics/businessHence strategic leadership for public administrators should pursue functional responsibility through leadership functions (Fu, 2012)Visionary skill causes difficulties when put through scientific testing, and like NPM grounded in observational findings
  • Principal-agent theory can be applied to explain management by contractDifferences between and permanent hierarchy and a contractCost controls on government mean fewer and fewer employees become responsible for contracts so they are not effectively managed which is in direct fail to NPMMarket monopoly – some items are not done by many people; few qualified bidders are aroundVery often government is not a smart buyerIn contracting out management issues are spread around, not solved.Saves money but not because of improved managementSolution? Bureaucrats must be trained in a contract theoretic form of management where they are rewarded for good outcomes
  • Usually business management to public administration but not vice versaTo advance public management theory, sustained, rigorous, empirical research is needed.Not just rebrand of old doctrine.
  • The main aim of the policy is said to be a combination of political control, broad participation, and using resources in an environmentally conscious and efficient way. It lists six more specific aims:(1)Developing a basis for political control, including building on democratic values and having the civil service help the government achieve political goals by preparing and implementing decisions on a professional basis. Good steering and organization are important and should include unambiguous accountability relationships, a sensible division of tasks, and balancing different aims and interests. Combining more participation and more emphasis on higher priorities makes demands on political control larger. A coordinated use of means is also mentioned.(2)Broad participation through a transparent and open civil service, easy access to information, broad user rights, and user influence on solutions.(3)An environmentally conscious civil service built on ethical standards and energy efficiency.(4)Efficiency in the civil service, including using resources well, so as to fulfill more political aims. It also advocates ICT solutions that facilitate connections to citizens and business, and unambiguous rules.(5)A competent and committed administrative staff, with an emphasis on recruiting, developing, and retaining competence, and on civil servants participating in and influencing their working environment.(6)Leaders who direct and motivate performance in an intelligent and result-oriented way in the interest of the collectivity, while also focusing on local responsibility.The paper also outlines the value basis of the civil service, which consists of four sets of values. First, democratic values. These are twofold, namely that the civil service should attend to political signals and be loyal toward the minister, the cabinet, and the parliament. At the same time, it should also be open to citizens and facilitate their participation and influence. Second, the rule of law and ensuring peoples' formal rights and obligations. Third, professional competence and integrity in the civil service. Fourth, efficient use of resources.
  • However, the ideas of post-NPM may not be widely appealing to administrators and academics who value the democratic nature of public institutions, decentralization, and justice and fairness, nor to those who value deliberative democracy in the sense that many citizens, businesses, and nongovernmental organizations are actively involved in politics, decision making, and community activities. A contemplation of the impact of NPM and post-NPM raises some difficult questions: Would public services have been improved if NPM or post-NPM had not been introduced? Have interactions in governance process between public administrators and citizens been satisfactory, democratic, and effective as a result of NPM and post-NPM? Have organizational and societal problems been improved - or resolved - because of implementing management driven strategies? In answering most of these questions, the proponents of public management tend to justify their reform goals with quantitative performance indicators.Post-NPM scholars argue that predetermined independent variables, such as environmental, cultural, and structural variables, are the causes of improved dependent variables (or outcomes and outputs), including decision-making behavior and reform effects (2007, 15-16). Empirical research designed to establish variable relationships is not as convincing as one might expect. Management-driven reform initiatives and implementation strategies often conflict with the wishes of implementers (employees and involved citizens) at different levels of government. The conflict is generally related to differences in understanding the problems of the organization and social reality that are qualitative and interpretive in nature. Unlike the measurement of input and output (or outcome) variable relationships, the factors that contribute to the problems of human collaboration, relationship variables, political consensus, and policy implementation are not susceptible to just statistical measurement, ranking, or macro indicators (such as regulations, structures, or goals) because they usually stem from many latent elements in different social settings.
  • Developments in public management theory

    1. 1. Developments in Public Management Theory Public Management Theory Evolution Adrienne A Wallace February 26, 2013
    2. 2.  1911 Principles of Scientific Management ◦ Processes and outcomesTaylor
    3. 3.  1937 major functions of management POSDCORB ◦ Planning ◦ Organizing ◦ Staffing ◦ Directing ◦ Coordinating ◦ Reporting ◦ BudgetingGulick
    4. 4.  1938 Acceptance Theory of Authority ◦ Does management take authority? ◦ Is it earned?Barnard
    5. 5.  Group of studies in the late 1920/30‟s Worker behavior affected by communication principles Researchers hypothesized: ◦ that choosing ones own coworkers ◦ working as a group ◦ being treated as ◦ having a sympathetic supervisor ◦ equal to productivity increaseHawthorne Effect
    6. 6.  Theory X (managerial oversight) vs. Theory Y (integrated individual and org goals) Group/organizational Theory Role Theory Communication Theory50’s, 60’s Middle-Range Theories
    7. 7. Theory X & Theory Y
    8. 8. Traditional vs. New Management
    9. 9. Theory X & Theory Y Simplified
    10. 10. Group Theory
    11. 11. Organizational Theory
    12. 12. Role Theory
    13. 13. Communication Theory
    14. 14.  Five different types of communication ◦ Interpersonal ◦ Dyadic ◦ Small Group ◦ Public ◦ MassCommunication Theory
    15. 15. Laswell, 1948
    16. 16. Shannon-Weaver, 1948-49
    17. 17. Interactive Model, 1948-49
    18. 18. Osgood Schramm, 1954
    19. 19. 1) Draw your ideal model of communication as a manager of public administration.2) OR, describe it in 2-3 sentences.3) Emphasize preferred methods of command and feedback.4) Explain and share.Activity
    20. 20.  Doctrines of Administration Public Management Theory Entrepreneurial Public Management New Public Management (NPM) ◦ New Managerialism70’s, 80’s, 90’s
    21. 21. 1) Ubiquitous (found everywhere)2) Based on “soft data” and “soft logic”3) Constantly shifting “received view” or “received wisdom”4) Often contradictory5) Unstable, changes with society6) Rotate (aka fashion)Hood & Jackson, 1991
    22. 22.  Hood & Jackson‟s doctrines become NPM Result in government that is: ◦ Better (for whom? Debated) ◦ Cleaner ◦ More efficient ◦ More professional ◦ Larger, more expensiveNew Public Management (NPM)
    23. 23.  Structural devolution and decentralization Vertical coordination and autonomy within single agency Managerialism and management techniques Contractualism, privatization, and entrepreneurship Market-driven techniques, competition, and citizens as customers Against the Weberian theory Deregulation and market transactions Performance management and outputMajor Ideas of NPM
    24. 24.  Fragmentation of roles and role ambiguity as a result of structural devolution Expansion of single-purpose organizations and vertical specialization Neglecting cooperation across agencies Excessive managerial autonomy Discontinuities and nonlinearities Undermining political control, creating mistrust, producing role ambiguityConsequences of NPM
    25. 25.  Where politic meets administration. Involves visionary skill – look beyond needs to create value Study of what leaders do rather than management theories. “The manager does things right; the leader does the right thing” (Bennis, 2003) ◦ Too much management not enough leadership ◦ Uses group theory and communication theory  Should do adaptive work  Tough under authoritative ruleLeadership
    26. 26.  “government by proxy” “third party government” “the hollow state” “indirect government” 1/6th of total federal spending on contract workContract
    27. 27. 1) Project can be clearly and precisely described for purposes of negotiation and compliance.2) Desired outcomes can be measured and identified.3) Penalties are imposed for noncompliance4) Contractors maybe discontinued or changedPrivatization Successful
    28. 28.  Information and communication technologies ◦ Reduce corruption ◦ Increase competition ◦ Collaborative in nature ◦ Facilitate improved communication ◦ Increase participation ◦ Promote transparency via E-government/Social Media  Contractor  GovernmentAccountability & Transparency
    29. 29.  NPM grounded in observations Difficult to replicate Not thought of as „scientific‟ Methods are transferrable * NPM more efficiency (output) than effective (outcome) Consider differences between day-to-day problems and long-term societal problems Paradigm is in troubleRisks and Returns
    30. 30.  JUG: joined up government (2003) WG: whole of government (1990‟s) More holistic strategy Using insights from the other social sciences, rather than just economics Designed to “get a grip” on wicked problems Presented as opposite of departmentalism, tunnel vision, and vertical silos„ Entails: ◦ Strong political control ◦ Reaching out to society via user forums and participation ◦ Enabling individual and organized private actors in civil society ◦ Representative government ◦ Public-private partnerships with NPO/NGO inclusion ◦ Networks ◦ Environmentally consciousPost-New Public Management
    31. 31.  Reducing fragmentation through structural integration Asserting recentralization and re-regulation Whole-of-government or joined-up government initiatives Eliminating role ambiguity and creating clear role relationships Private-public partnerships Increased centralization, capacity building, and coordination Strengthening central political and administrative capacity Paying attention to environmental, historical, and cultural elementsMajor Ideas Post-NPM
    32. 32.  Both assume public employees are accountable for: ◦ implementing management goals ◦ change initiatives. Employees are expected to: ◦ comply with new rules, procedures, and incentives ◦ be motivated by these external variables [“because I said so”]Accountability, Performance, &Trust Under NPM & Post-NPM
    33. 33.  What if this isn‟t the case? Where do we go from here in public management theory?Now what?
    34. 34.  Bertot, J.C., Jaeger, P. T., & Grimes, J. M. (2012). Promoting transparency and accountability through ICTs, social media, and collaborative e-government. Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, 6(1), 78-91. doi: Christensen, Tom, and Per Lægreid. "Democracy and Administrative Policy: Contrasting Elements of New Public Management (NPM) and Post-NPM." European Political Science Review : EPSR 3.1 (2011): 125-46. ProQuest Social Sciences Premium Collection. Web. 26 Feb. 2013. Dunleavy, P., Margetts, H., Bastow, S., & Tinkler, J. (2006). New public management is dead -- long live digital-era governance. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 16(3), 467-494. doi: Frederickson, H.G., Smith, K.B., Larimer, C.W., & Licari, M.J. (2012). The public administration theory primer. Boulder, CO: Westview Press. Fu, K. (2012). The interaction of politics and management in public leadership: Measuring public political skill and assessing its effects. (The Florida State University). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 132. Retrieved from (1095719509). Girth, A. M. (2010). Accountability and discretion in the age of contracting: When and why do public managers implement sanctions for unsatisfactory contract performance? (The American University). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 223. Retrieved from (762408559). Gudelis, D., & Guogis, A. (2011). Integrating public and business management: A model of interaction between public and private sectors. International Review on Public and Non - Profit Marketing, 8(1), 1-9. doi: Jong, S. Jun. "The Limits of Post-New Public Management and Beyond." Public administration review 69.1 (2009): 161-5.ProQuest Business Collection; ProQuest Psychology Journals; ProQuest Research Library; ProQuest Social Sciences Premium Collection. Web. 26 Feb. 2013. Kelley, T. M., & Johnston, E. (2012). Discovering the appropriate role of serious games in the design of open governance platforms. Public Administration Quarterly, 36(4), 504-554. Retrieved from Luke, B., Kearins, K., & Martie-Louise Verreynne. (2011). The risks and returns of new public management: Political business. The International Journal of Public Sector Management, 24(4), 325-355. doi: Levitt, Steven, D. and List, John, A. (2011) "Was there really a Hawthorne Effect at the Hawthorne Plant? an Analysis of the Original Illumination Experiments." American Economic Journal Applied Economics 3.1 : 224-38. ProQuest Business Collection.Web. Masumi R. Izawa, Michael D. French, and Alan Hedge (2011). Shining New Light on the Hawthorne Illumination Experiments Human Factors: The Journal of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society October 2011 53: 528-547,doi:10.1177/0018720811417968 Westbrook, M. A. (2012). Building an architecture for leadership development. Public Manager, 41(3), 60-63. Retrieved from