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Examining the Determinants of Civil Service Reform in U.S. State Governments

  • Korean Society and Public Administration
  • Abbr : KSPA
  • 2011, 21(4), pp.283-311
  • Publisher : Seoul Association For Public Administration
  • Research Area : Social Science > Public Administration

김정인 1

1서울대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

What drives changes in states’ civil services? What determines civil service reform extent and intensity? This study attempts to answer these questions through finding key factors of major determinants for the civil service reform movement across 50 states since the 1990s. Based on empirical research, some previous studies (e.g., Coggburn 2001) found that state human resource management deregulation was significantly influenced by public employee unionism, political party control, and administrative professionalism. Although Hays and Sowa (2006a) found some variations of changes in state civil service systems through telephone surveys of state offices of human resource management (OHRs), the study conducted a qualitative cross-sectional analysis, and it could not find significant causal relationships between factors that might drive civil service reform and reform extent. Employing data collected by various sources, such as the Council of State Government and the U.S. Census Bureau, this paper examined what factors influence the extent of civil service reforms and reform intensity. More specifically, the present study attempted to find the influence of political, managerial, and socioeconomic environments on civil service reform by utilizing longitudinal data analysis between FY 1991 and FY 2006. Results showed that political environment, especially governors’ characteristics, is critical in terms of the extent of civil service reform, and managerial and socioeconomic environments (e.g., union density, demographic characteristics of state population) are important determinants of reform intensity across the United States.

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