Public Administration and Teaching – Papers, Toulouse 2010

Conference theme: Temporalities, Public Administrations & Public Policies

Reviewing the body of skills, knowledge and competencies of the professional Bachelor programmes in Public Administration at the five Dutch Universities of applied sciences

Avelien Haan-Kamminga PhD, Wim Brassé MA,
The Hague University of Applied Sciences,
The Netherlands

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The presentation of this paper at the EGPA-conference in Toulouse in September 2010 is part of the review of the body of skills, knowledge and competencies for the Dutch Bachelor programs in Public Administration.

At the conference we will seek the feedback of EGPA-study group IX. The feedback that we will be asking will centre on the following questions:

  • Does the study group feel that the body of skills, knowledge and competencies laid out in this paper meets international standards (e.g. EGPA, EEAPAA, WOTPA).
  • Does the study group feel that the body of skills, knowledge and competencies laid out in this paper enables us to graduate professionals in public administration who are ready for the challenges the public sector is faced with in the coming decade.
  • Does the study group have suggestions to further improve this body of skills, knowledge and competencies?

Evaluation of training of managers in the context of the Portuguese public sector

César Madureira and David Ferraz,
National Institute for Public Administration ,
Portugal

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It is largely recognized that Public Administration is an important structure in the process of governance. In addition to applying public policies set by governments, Public Administration also plays an important role in its definition, being the link between political power and the citizen (Dowding, 1995; Peters, 2001; Mozzicafreddo, 2001).

It is therefore important that public organisations become highly qualified, particularly within the designated “top public management”1 which is composed of people who perform their duties with great impact in the governance process (Mulgan, 2007; Ferraz, 2008). In this sense it is important that these professionals hold the necessary skills to carry out these functions. Taking this reality in context, Portugal established as a requirement for the development of managerial functions specific training for managers of public administration for the first time in 2004 (according to the Law No. 2 / 2004 of 15 January). The law decreed that all public managers should attend a long training cycle program in order to maintain their roles as managers in the administration.

Later, with the Law No. 51/2005 of 30 August, the courses for the training of public managers have been restructured, resulting in the courses that exist today. The law also previewed that some certified entities, selected by a competition, could perform those courses. In the National Institute of Administration, I.P. (INA, IP), the pioneering institution in the implementation of these courses, and the only one that belongs to the central administration, the training courses had been coordinated from the beginning (2003-2004) by the Managers Training Department (FDIR) whose mission is “to provide leadership training for top-level and middle level public managers”. In the recent past, a study pointed that public managers in Portuguese public administration attended less training when compared with the officials with a degree (Madureira, 2004).

A multidisciplinary doctoral research program in administrative sciences. The economic and social impact of public administration Europeanization

Prof. Dr. Lucica Matei, Prof. Dr. Ani Matei,
National School of Political Studies and Public Administration,
Romania

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In the current paper, we aim to formulate the objectives, contents and syllabus of a discipline that will approach the complex issue of evaluating the economic and social impact of public administration Europeanization in a methodological and educational way.

The research topic is new on one hand, determined by the behaviour novelty of EU against the Member States, which have a founding status, or new EU adhering countries (2007) and vice versa the behaviour of Member States towards the EU in different development stages, and on the other hand, the topic has outgrown the full age and started the biological maturity process with every EU enlargement stage.

The general directions and mechanisms supporting the above activity will be as follows:

– Multidisciplinary approach of the Europeanization processes, describing the systemic mechanisms of development, adjustment and self-adjustment, specific for the convergence and dynamics of national public administrations.
– Evaluating the economic and social impact of national public administrations Europeanization by substantiating statistic models and relevant socio-economic indicators.
– Making operational a theoretical and empirical framework by means of significant analyses, methodologies and case studies for the topic approached.

We aim to evaluate the economic and social impact through:
– Quantitative and qualitative indicators in view to determine the degree of administrative and economic convergence.
– Framework models of organisational analysis for Europeanization of representative institutions in national, central or local governments.
– Socio-economic indicators and models aimed at determining the costs of bureaucracy and correlating their trends with the economic performance.
– Statistic indicators concerning the influence of the meritocratic criteria in the civil service development on the economic growth and public sector performance.

Public management education in Central Europe: how far did we progress – II?

Juraj Nemec, David Spacek, Patrycja Suwaj, Artur Modrzejewski,
Matej Bel University Banska Bystrica,
Slovakia

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The “Standards of Excellence for Public Administration Education and Training”, prepared by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs together with International Association of Schools and Institutes of Administration, state between many other standards:

A Curriculum that is Purposeful and Responsive
A principal goal of public administration education and training is the development of public administrators who will make strong, positive contributions to the public service generally and, in particular, to the organizations they join, or to which they return.
To check to what extend this (but also some other) standard is respected by PA education in selected CEE countries we started comparative research in Poland, Czechia and Slovakia. This research is expected to respond to the following research questions:

  1. How many public management (bachelors and masters) programmes are delivered in selected countries? Are programs called public management really public management programmes from the point of view of curricula? What are explanations for the situation?
  2. What is the proportion of public management courses in the curricula of accredited public administration programs, sorted by group, delivered in selected countries? What are explanations for this proportion?
  3. What are the dominant teaching approaches used for delivery of public management courses?

Affiliation of collectivism to hard and soft values in professional education: cases of social and health care sector and police administration education in Finland

Päivi Huotari, Olavi Kujanpää, Maarit Sihvonen & Jari Stenvall,Finland

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It is a very typical assumption that the task of education is to create instrumental capacities for working life. Operations in working life are significantly affected by different manners, habits, values, and applied meanings. In public sector, values are based on a welfare society. Especially the education of professionals working with citizen’s basic needs, health, social welfare and safety, is structured with modules reflecting professional and working life values. Aging population and growing inequality in health and social welfare between different social classes in Finland create challenges to students in these fields. The demand for value-based decision making will be even stronger in the near future. Values lie in the core of organisational cultures and lay the foundations of different manners, guiding beliefs, understanding, and ways of thinking. Values are very important in managerial work, too. It is even possible to argue that values created by education provide abilities to work as managers. Values tell something about the ideology of management.

There are major administrative changes in progress in Finland, and they are moulding the operations of the public sector, also concerning the social and health care sector and police administration. The reform initiatives provide a critical contextual influence on the work of professionals and their values. As a rule, social and health care services are administered in Finland by municipalities and they enjoy strong self-governance. Police administration, on the other hand, is a part of state administration even at the local level. The local administration level is currently being moulded by the PARAS project and the police administration by the PORA project. In addition, Finland is engaged in the Bologna Process. The PARAS project involves the structures and services of municipalities. According to the PARAS legislation, the units offering basic health care services as well as those involved in the closely related social services must cover areas of at least 20,000 inhabitants. Some Finnish municipalities arrange the basic health care services themselves; some have common health care centres or co-operation in the arrangement of on-duty services, while others arrange all their basic services within co-operation areas. Administration is typically scattered, with plenty of different variations. Within the PORA project, police administration has been developed so that the number of district police departments is reduced from 90 to 24. Licensing services are to an increasing degree provided as joint services. Co-operation and specialisation in demanding tasks is being developed between police departments.

Education also changes along with the administrative structures. Finnish higher education institutions are engaged in the Bologna Process with the aim to create a common European higher education area by the year 2010. The objective is to make European higher education institutions attractive, which is aimed at by the adoption of comprehensible and streamlined examination structures, the introduction of common study unit systems, increased mobility, quality assessment, and international networking.

The Finnish education system has aimed at strengthening the role of the universities of applied sciences as producers of professional competences. This has meant longer education times and has opened up possibilities to study advanced degrees at universities of applied sciences. The core idea is still, however, that universities of applied sciences particularly concentrate on education to provide professional competences, whereas the role of universities is geared to scientific education.

The Public Management Masters in the broader management education environment

Alex Murdock & Chrissie Oldfield,
London South Bank University,
United Kingdom

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The MPA model has become well established both in the UK and abroad and has generally sought to offer both a content and pedagogy which has particular relevance to the public sector manager. The Third sector is a relative latecomer to  management education but also has generally drawn on a paradigm that the management education needs of the third sector are distinct from the other sectors. However both operate in the context of the „elephant in the room‟ – namely the wider management tradition based on the generic and often private sector management education tradition.

The management education field has to some extent mirrored the public/ private/ third sector sector division described by Pestoff and others. The courses offered have come to differentiate themselves according to sector – especially at Masters level.

Perhaps due to the work experience requirements of the MBA/MPA and NfP Masters a new „species‟ has evolved to address the demands for a management masters programmes which does not seek a significant level of work experience. In the UK these are often described as Master of Management Studies . In the European (and American ) context it has proven possible to extend \ MBA programmes to students with little or no work experience.

Using the Darwinian analogy some species of Management Masters seem to be thriving and others may be confronting extinction. However Management education is not the Galapagos islands and a degree of cross breeding and interaction is possible;
Hence there are similarities and crossovers to be found. Just as managers in one sector can „cross over‟ and find that at least a substantial part of their skill set and experience transfers so it can be argued that universities in their provision of programmes should both identify common areas and seek through their programme provision to bring the areas together.

In this paper the authors will explore the areas of difference and similarity between management education programmes and identify possible trends which may indicate actual and desirable directions of evolution We will build on and develop an earlier paper (Murdock 2009)

Quality assurance and accreditation of PhD-programs in public administration

Prof. Dr. Christoph Reichard,
University of Potsdam,
Germany

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Since some years, quality assurance (QA) is an emerging issue in higher education (see ENQA standards etc). In the context of “Bologna”-reforms, QA became more relevant also for the third “Bologna” cycle, the PhD studies. In line with the emphasis to streamline and to harmonize higher education in Europe, PhD-studies have been subject of standardization and formalization (e.g. the assumption of a normal length of 3 years and of a workload of 180 ECTS for a PhD study). In some of the continental European countries there is also a tendency to move from the classical masterapprentice-model (“Doktorvater”) of individual research without much taught elements to a more structured concept of PhD training with coursework and with more systematic tutoring und supervision. There is also a tendency of moving from the “big book” thesis as final result of a PhD study to a cumulative process with several journal publications as step-by-step output of a doctoral candidate. Generally, the academic traditions of the continental Humboldtian system and of the anglosaxon culture are converging to some extent.

According to actual data (EUA 2009), the three-cycle system of higher education (Bachelor-Master-PhD) has been introduced in most European countries in the meantime. 50% of universities in Europe have already established doctoral programs and teaching elements are becoming more and more common in European doctoral programs (70% of programs). Internationalization of studying as well as of research is another factor influencing the relevance of QA. The  comparability of programs is now more important as some years ago because PhD students want to know about the quality of similar programs for going abroad. The same is true for research programs and for international research collaboration. Finally, funding of PhD programs by government has increased in various countries. Thus, governments want to know more about the quality of programs which are subject of funding.

The described reasons of an increasing relevance of QA in the context of PhD education do also apply for the field of public administration/management/governance. PhD education is moving towards more structured patterns and taught elements become more important (Reichard/Kickert 2008 for more details).

Inertia of education and recruitment in the German civil service

Prof. Dr. Christoph Reichard, Manfred Röber,
University of Potsdam,
Germany

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Although context and tasks of public administration have considerably been changing during the last decades, public sector organisations in Germany still continue to recruit junior staff members for general administrative tasks and functions more or less along traditional patterns. Education takes place in separated internal schools and colleges and it is based primarily on law application (i.e. the well-known “lawyer’s monopoly” on the higher echelons of hierarchy). Graduates from programmes with an economic, managerial or political science-related background have only limited job opportunities and career perspectives in the German civil service.
The paper starts with an overview about the traditional civil service and an analysis of its strengths and weaknesses against the background of an emerging complex and dynamic environment. After that the paper presents the findings of a survey on German civil service education conducted by the authors. The paper describes some quantitative developments in recruitment for the clerical, executive and administrative level at all administrative layers (federal, state and local) as well as curriculum developments in the institutions responsible for public sector education (administrative
schools, internal staff training colleges, polytechnic universities and universities) over the last 15 years. Finally, the paper analyses to which extent the traditional contents and methods of civil service education have been adjusted to meet the present (and future) requirements and challenges of the German public sector.
The findings presented in this paper are based on a survey which was conducted in 2010. The authors carried out interviews with the responsible HRM managers of all German Ministries of Interior of Germany who are responsible for education and recruitment (federal government plus 16 Länder governments). Additionally, the authors collected data from official statistics and from various websites of training institutions. The interviews were based on interview guidelines. The underlying survey of the paper does not cover the whole area of public sector education and recruitment it concentrates on the field of general administrative services (allgemeiner innerer
Verwaltungsdienst). Consequently, specific educational areas like police, teachers, justice, tax administration are excluded. Furthermore, the paper primarily deals with pre-entry education and it neglects other issues of education and training, e.g. Continuing training or leadership training. The focus of the whole paper is on the education and recruitment of junior members of the staff at the beginning of their career. The selection, recruitment and further training of experienced and senior staff for specific positions are not in the centre of our research.

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