Merit Recruitment, Tenure Protections and Public Service Motivation: Evidence from a Conjoint Experiment with 7,300 Public Servants in Latin America, Africa and Eastern Europe

Jan-Hinrik Meyer-Sahling, Kim Sass Mikkelsen, Christian Schuster*

*Corresponding author

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

Abstract

How can governments manage civil servants to enhance public service motivation (PSM)? Despite the centrality of PSM in public administration research, the effects of management practices on PSM remain understudied. We address this gap through a conjoint experiment with 7,300 public servants in five countries in Africa, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Our experiment assesses two practices: merit‐based competitions for recruitment versus discretionary appointments; and permanent tenure versus temporary job contracts. We find that merit competitions are associated with greater PSM by respondents in four countries, yet have no significant effect in a fifth. Permanent contracts are associated with greater PSM (two countries), lower PSM (one country) and have no significant effect (two countries). The effects of personnel management practices thus appear to vary across contexts. A common practice in public administration research—generalizations about the effects of management practices from single‐country studies or cross‐country averages—requires rethinking.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftPublic Administration
Vol/bindOnline Version of Record before inclusion in an issue
ISSN0033-3298
DOI
StatusE-pub ahead of print - 10 nov. 2020

Bibliografisk note

Important note from the Publisher regarding the attached version of the article: "This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Meyer‐Sahling, J., Mikkelsen, K. and Schuster, C. (2020), Merit Recruitment, Tenure Protections and Public Service Motivation: Evidence from a Conjoint Experiment with 7,300 Public Servants in Latin America, Africa and Eastern Europe. Public Admin. Accepted Author Manuscript, which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/padm.12708. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions."

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