Representative Bureaucracy in Action
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Representative Bureaucracy in Action

Country Profiles from the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia

Edited by B. Guy Peters, Patrick von Maravić and Eckhard Schröter

Taking a comparative and analytical perspective, the authoritatively, yet accessibly written, country chapters show how salient the politics of representativeness have become in increasingly diverse societies. At the same time, they illustrate the wide variety of practice based on different political systems, administrative structures, and cultural settings.
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Chapter 1: Representative bureaucracy: concept, driving forces, strategies

B. Guy Peters, Eckhard Schröter and Patrick von Maravić

Extract

For more than two decades the study of public administration has been occupied with the peculiarities, causes, and consequences of what has been termed New Public Management (NPM). Representative bureaucracy and diversity management also raises questions about the link between workforce and performance, but more importantly brings society back into the study of public administration. The study of representative bureaucracy is concerned with the multiplicity of relationships between the composition of the public workforces and the socio-demographic characteristics of the society it serves, the consequences of the workforce composition for society at large, specific societal groups, and internal organizational performance as well as the (formal and informal) institutionalization of group rights and privileges. It directs the attention to the relationship of the socio-demographic, -linguistic and -ethnic compositions of societies and the workforce of the public sector and raises questions about the extent to which public sector workforces mirror the composition of the societies they are supposed to serve and the consequences this has for the quality of delivering services, the management of large organizations, the legitimacy of the state as such as well as questions of sharing power between societal forces.

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