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Capitalist transformation of the public sector is global phenomenon that affects many countries. This paper seeks to examine recent public sector reforms introduced by the…
Capitalist transformation of the public sector is global phenomenon that affects many countries. This paper seeks to examine recent public sector reforms introduced by the Government of Botswana to improve civil service performance. The underlying political philosophy behind the change in the public sector is explored by relating the neoliberal ideology which is driving the reform agenda to the discourse of new public management (NPM).
A realist social theory is used to explain generative mechanisms and structures that are the driving force behind the change process.
The paper suggests that the public sector provides essential services, which many poor people in the developing world depend on. Consequently, privatisation of public services is more likely to exacerbate poverty and to intensify inequality because the private sector is profit not needs centred. Moreover, these changes will have serious consequences for the workers. Already some have been retrenched and those remaining face a new work regime. Outsourcing is one facet of it in Botswana, which is associated with poor pay and bad working conditions.
Provides a deeper understanding of restructuring of the public sector which is crucial for labour organisations and researchers on labour relations.
Previous research on Botswana reforms has tended to promote neoliberal globalisation. This is the first paper that challenges comprehensively this dominant paradigm and its accompanying ideology of NPM by offering an alternative critique from a standpoint of the poor and exploited.
– Management: human resources management.
Management: human resources management.
Undergraduate and postgraduate.
This case gives critical insights in the complex issues surrounding the management of employment relationship in Africa, specifically focusing on Botswana. It is set in the context of explosive industrial relations involving Debswana Diamond Mining Company and the Botswana Mine Workers Union over the contentious issues of pay bonus and collective bargaining. Failure to reach an amicable compromise by both parties' results in a debilitating strike which costs the company millions of funds and affected it's the corporate image contrary to its well crafted social responsibility. More painfully, the end game is a loss of employment and dreams shattered for 461 dismissed workers who depended solely on this work as their only source of income.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of reading the case students are expected to: understand the limits of managerial prerogative and the right to manage;appreciate the inherent conflict of interests between labour and capital; consider more equitable compensation schemes in dealing with collective bargaining; and discuss the concept of social responsibility in the context internal customers-employees.