SAGE Journal Articles
Abstract: The 21st century promises a more diverse public workplace in terms of race, ethnicity, culture, gender, age, and disabilities. In light of the shifting composition of public organizations, this article applies three different paradigms of diversity developed to understand private organizations and analyze practices in and research about public organizations. Building on these paradigms, this article proposes a new process for managing diversity that facilitates the development and promulgation of a multicultural organization. This paradigm of multiculturalism cultivates a climate in which individuals from dominant and nondominant cultures coexist and thrive. Consequently, agencies will be more effective in recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce, structuring internal processes, and serving clients.
Abstract: This study examines how chief executives in small U.S. cities allocate their time, view their involvement in decisions related to the dimensions of the governmental process, who they consult in making decisions about local services, and the extent to which they perceive that their decisions are influenced by community interest groups. The study confirms that several differences exist among the different types of executives with respect to time allocation and role emphases. City managers spent more time on and perceived themselves to be more extensively involved in decisions related to local mission, policy, administration, and management compared with mayors. Mayors and city managers exhibited different patterns of consultation with key stakeholders in making decisions about local services. City managers were more likely than mayors to engage in activities related to the city’s mission and policy, but they tempered that involvement with a more inclusive pattern of consultation.
Abstract: Whereas past studies have examined organizational red tape in terms of either particular organizational processes, time required to fulfill organizational functions, or Managers' perceptions, our research anchors red-tape constructs in the context of particular decisions. Using data from a mail questionnaire survey of public managers in state health and human services organizations, the study hypothesizes that public Managers' assessments of the red tape in decisions is a function of degree of external control, number of participants in decisions, the reversibility of decisions, “risk culture,” and especially the decision content. After using multiple regression to control for possible spurious relationships, the results suggest a two-factor explanation; specifically, assessments of the red tape in decisions are accounted for by the organization's level of hierarchy (more hierarchical organizations have more red tape in decisions) and by the particular content of the decisions.
Abstract: Much research has been done on the way in which individuals in organizations deal with their discretion. This article focuses on the literature on street-level bureaucracy and the literature on ethical decision making. Despite their shared attempt to explain individual behavior and decision making, these research traditions have been developed quite independently. Moreover, although they both list relevant influencing factors, they do not succeed entirely in clarifying how and under which circumstances these factors have an impact on individual behavior and decision making. This article attempts to substantiate how the concept of social mechanism could help to open the black box of causation.