A Public Values Perspective
Edited by Peter Leisink, Paul Boselie, Maarten van Bottenburg and Dian Marie Hosking
Chapter 11: How public middle managers relate to the institutional values their organizations represent
In this chapter, I discuss the various ways in which middle managers in and around the public domain present themselves as being ‘somewhere in the middle’ of their organizations. This is because the notion of ‘middle manager’ is quite ambiguous itself. In the public realm, like elsewhere, they are those managers whose activities are primarily focused on the day-to-day operations of their organizations, but in most cases they are no longer called supervisors. Accordingly, their day-to-day negotiations are not purely operational anymore either. They are often expected to deal with their organization’s accountability systems as well (see also Child and Partridge 1982) and some of them now even manage from a little further up the hierarchy of their organizations. In the public sector this repositioning is expressly related to the introduction of the principles associated with New Public Management (NPM; see Noordegraaf 2011).
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