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Toward a public service management: past, present, and future directions

Ian R. Hodgkinson (Centre for Service Management, School of Business and Economics, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK)
Claire Hannibal (Business School, University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton, UK)
Byron W. Keating (Research School of Management, College of Business and Economics, The Australian National University, Canberra, Australia)
Rosamund Chester Buxton (Centre for Service Management, School of Business and Economics, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK)
Nicola Bateman (Centre for Service Management, School of Business and Economics, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK)

Journal of Service Management

ISSN: 1757-5818

Article publication date: 22 September 2017

Issue publication date: 19 October 2017

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Abstract

Purpose

In providing a fine-grained analysis of public service management, the purpose of this paper is to make an important contribution to furthering research in service management, a body of literature that has tended to regard public services as homogenous or to neglect the context altogether.

Design/methodology/approach

Integrating public management and service management literatures, the past and present of public service management are discussed. Future directions for the field are outlined drawing on a service-dominant approach that has the potential to transform public services. Invited commentaries augment the review.

Findings

The review presents the Public Service Network Framework to capture the public value network in its abstraction and conceptualizes how value is created in public services. The study identifies current shortcomings in the field and offers a series of directions for future research where service management theory can contribute greatly.

Research limitations/implications

The review encourages service management research to examine the dynamic, diverse, and complex nature of public services and to recognize the importance of this context. The review calls for an interdisciplinary public service management community to develop, and to assist public managers in leveraging service logic.

Originality/value

The review positions service research in the public sector, makes explicit the role of complex networks in value creation, argues for wider engagement with public service management, and offers future research directions to advance public service management research.

Keywords

Citation

Hodgkinson, I.R., Hannibal, C., Keating, B.W., Chester Buxton, R. and Bateman, N. (2017), "Toward a public service management: past, present, and future directions", Journal of Service Management, Vol. 28 No. 5, pp. 998-1023. https://doi.org/10.1108/JOSM-01-2017-0020

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited