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Article
Publication date: 11 April 2016

Christina Andrews

The purpose of this paper is to present a framework integrating theoretical insights, empirical research and practical advice emerging from public service motivation (PSM…

2943

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a framework integrating theoretical insights, empirical research and practical advice emerging from public service motivation (PSM) and self-determination theory (SDT). It aims at demonstrating that, while PSM shows the relevance of public values for motivation, SDT explains how context affects it. Taking the two theoretical approaches as complementary to one another and by pointing out their “static” and “dynamic” features, the framework provides a theoretical foundation for organizational practices aimed at enhancing motivation in the public services.

Design/methodology/approach

The framework is based on a review of PSM and SDT theoretical concepts and empirical studies; the analysis examines the implications and contributions of each approach to the understanding of motivation in the public services.

Findings

The paper demonstrates that PSM and SDT are complementary theoretical approaches and that this complementarity can provide clearer guidance to practitioners and widen the understanding of motivation in the public services.

Research limitations/implications

The framework considers only a few features pertaining motivation in the public services, such as public values, basic needs satisfaction, prosocial behaviour and socialization. Further research should explore additional factors.

Practical implications

The framework provides an explanation of why some practices are likely to enhance motivation in the public services, while others are likely to deplete it.

Originality/value

The framework does not limit itself to proposing the theoretical integration of PSM and SDT, but connects this integration to organizational practices.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 29 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 November 2021

Sobia Hassan, Nighat Ansari and Ali Rehman

The present study aimed to find out the relationship of public service motivation (PSM) with other positive aspects, that is workplace spirituality and employee well-being…

Abstract

Purpose

The present study aimed to find out the relationship of public service motivation (PSM) with other positive aspects, that is workplace spirituality and employee well-being among academic staff of public sector higher education institutions.

Design/methodology/approach

In order to capture the full picture of the institutional factors that may be responsible for initiating and improving public service motivation among employees, 23 interviews were carried out with employees placed in leadership positions in the public sector universities. The data were qualitatively analyzed through NVivo 12 to gain institutional perspective regarding various organizational factors that could influence PSM.

Findings

The finding of this study elaborates that, although PSM is a personal attribute of the individual, there are many other organizational factors that exert a substantial effect in promoting PSM. The results of qualitative data also affirmed a significant relationship between PSM and workplace spirituality (a type of organizational culture) and the influence of employee well-being in improving the motivation of public employees towards service provision.

Research limitations/implications

The data were collected from the specific population that is academic staff of public sector universities which limits the generalizability of the results.

Practical implications

PSM is a vital concept in public organizations where individuals must understand and focus on public concerns to improve the quality of public service. Therefore, public sector organizations faced the challenge of nurturing an organizational culture in which selfless public service becomes the norm and individuals are driven by the effective accomplishments of their services. Therefore, an organization that is highly oriented towards spirituality likely to improve employee well-being, which is a challenging and important concept in organizations in promoting PSM among employees.

Originality/value

This study is unique in terms of identifying workplace spirituality and employee well-being as organizational influencers in promoting PSM among employees.

Details

Qualitative Research Journal, vol. 22 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1443-9883

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 November 2008

Bangcheng Liu, Ningyu Tang and Xiaomei Zhu

The purpose of this research is to investigate how generalisable the public service motivation (PSM) observed in Western society is to China and to examine the effects of…

7551

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to investigate how generalisable the public service motivation (PSM) observed in Western society is to China and to examine the effects of public service motivation on job satisfaction.

Design/methodology/approach

Exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis techniques are applied to survey data of 191 public servants in China to investigate the generalisability of Western PSM. Using hierarchical regression analysis, the paper examines the effects of the dimensions of PSM on job satisfaction.

Findings

The results show that the public service motivation observed in the West exists in China, but the generalisability of the construct is limited. Three of the four dimensions of public service motivation (attraction to public policy making, commitment to the public interest, and self‐sacrifice) exist in China, but the fourth dimension (compassion) is unconfirmed.

Originality/value

The paper is the first to examine the generalisability and instrumentality of PSM as observed in Western society to China. The results indicate that the public service motivation observed in the West also exists in China, but that the generalisability is limited. Public service motivation emerges from the results as a positively significant predictor of job satisfaction in the public sector of China. It enhances the applicability and meaningfulness of the concept of public service motivation across political and cultural environments.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 29 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2006

Sangmook Kim

The main theme is to investigate whether the distinct classes of organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) such as altruism and generalized compliance are shown in the…

9285

Abstract

Purpose

The main theme is to investigate whether the distinct classes of organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) such as altruism and generalized compliance are shown in the Korean context, and whether public service motivation, job satisfaction and organizational commitment are predictors of OCB in Korean civil servants.

Design/methodology/approach

Structural equation modeling (SEM) is applied to survey data of 1,584 civil servants in Korea to examine the relationships between the three predictors and the two dimensions of OCB.

Findings

The results indicate the presence of the two dimensions of OCB in the Korean context, and support the relationships between public service motivation and OCB and the relationship between organizational commitment and OCB. However, the direct relationship between job satisfaction and OCB is not confirmed.

Originality/value

This paper is the first to analyze the effect of public service motivation on OCB, and shows that public service motivation emerges as a more significant predictor of OCB in the public sector of Korea. It contributes to enhancing the applicability and meaningfulness of the concept of OCB across different cultures.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 27 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 17 November 2021

Sobia Hassan, Nighat Ansari, Ali Rehman and Amani Moazzam

The public service motivation (PSM) theory implies that public employees are spiritual people called “public servants” who have a desire to affect the community and are…

Abstract

Purpose

The public service motivation (PSM) theory implies that public employees are spiritual people called “public servants” who have a desire to affect the community and are characterized by compassion and serving others. Owing to their commitment to public welfare, spirituality is apparently inherited in public employees as an occupation/employment effort, which entails attaching a “meaning” to the work being done in the workplace for the spiritual satisfaction of the employees. A sense of well-being among the employees of an organization can prove instrumental in developing their motivation level and improving the quality of their services. The literature depicts that workplace spirituality (WPS) is a feature that enhances multiple forms of employee well-being (EWB). Considering the importance of these concepts in terms of enhancing the productivity of the organizations, the current study aimed to gain an understanding of the PSM together with two other positive attributes namely WPS and EWB and determine their interrelationship. The aim of this study is to examine a significant positive relationship between PSM and WPS mediated by EWB.

Design/methodology/approach

The study has been conducted in the context of the public sector of Pakistan where a sample of the academic staff of higher educational institutions in the Punjab province was selected through probability sampling techniques for conducting the survey. The data collected from 394 respondents from the selected faculties of the universities were analyzed using relevant statistical tools (SPSS and AMOS: 22) to answer the research questions.

Findings

This study supported a significant positive relationship between PSM and WPS mediated by EWB. The quantitative findings of this study, thus, demonstrated that the culture of spirituality in the workplace significantly affects the PSM of employees by way of creating a sense of well-being among the employees.

Originality/value

This study is unique as it serves as an effort to understand the spiritual experience of the public sector employees involved in public service. This infers that spirituality in the workplace improved employees’ well-being by giving them a strong sense of purpose and these employees in a healthy state of mind are more likely to perform above and beyond and have a high motivation to serve the public.

Details

International Journal of Ethics and Systems, vol. 38 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9369

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 August 2018

Davide de Gennaro

The purpose of this paper is to propose an organizational behavioral perspective that could provide useful analysis tools to understand the behavior of public leaders…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose an organizational behavioral perspective that could provide useful analysis tools to understand the behavior of public leaders working in changeable and uncertain contexts (like the Italian one). More specifically, drawing on public administration and organizational behavior literatures, this paper examines whether the lack of continuity and long-term planning is significantly associated to public service motivation for public management.

Design/methodology/approach

The main contribution of this study is in taking into account the agency of public managers in reaction to wider changes in their political context. It is a theoretical study that considers sudden changes in government from a behavioral perspective, analyzing an extreme case of political and organizational turnover, namely the Italian context.

Findings

Public managers, when faced with constant change, act as transformational leaders and have the objective of leverage on intrinsic motivations in order to make the change accepted and, more so, to make it perceived as an advantage for the administration.

Originality/value

This study is among the first to address the issue of public service motivation and intrinsic motivations in carrying out the own job in the public sphere in a constantly changing scenario. Assuming that motivational incentives for public and private employees are different, namely that the former, in particular, are particularly attracted to motivations related to people and common good, this study investigates how public service motivation should be stimulated and supported in a context of change.

Details

Journal of Economic and Administrative Sciences, vol. 35 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1026-4116

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 August 2016

Jaclyn Schede Piatak

The purpose of this paper is to examine the behavioural consequences of public service motivation (PSM) and how motivation relates to an individual’s call to serve both…

2039

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the behavioural consequences of public service motivation (PSM) and how motivation relates to an individual’s call to serve both inside and outside of the workplace. More specifically, this study examines whether and how PSM relates to prosocial behaviours – volunteering and giving – and career ambitions to work in the government or non-profit sector among public affair graduate students.

Design/methodology/approach

Logistic regression is used to examine the PSM link using a composite of the 40-item scale, each of the six dimensions – commitment to the public interest, civic duty, social justice, attraction to policymaking, compassion, and self-sacrifice – and the five-item scale from the Merit Principles Survey. The analyses draw upon data from a unique online survey of 122 graduate students in Master of Public Administration and Master of Public Policy programmes.

Findings

The results indicate that people with higher levels of PSM are more likely to want to work in public service and volunteer. However, mixed results were found for the relationship between PSM and giving charitable donations and career ambitions to work in government and no link was found for career ambitions to work in the non-profit sector.

Originality/value

This paper answers calls to examine the dimensions of PSM and examines Perry’s (1996) original conception. The results provide practical implications for human resource managers as well as non-profit and public managers in recruiting and retaining employees and volunteers.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 37 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 September 2016

Eddy S.W. Ng, Charles W. Gossett, Samuel Chinyoka and Isaac Obasi

The purpose of this paper is to explore the factors that may be related to a career choice in the public vs the private sector in a developing African country.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the factors that may be related to a career choice in the public vs the private sector in a developing African country.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a sample of graduate management students, the authors tested reward preferences and altruism, elements of public service motivation, on their generalizability to a developing country in Africa. The authors also examine the role of career attitudes, individual personality factors, and cultural values on a career choice in public service.

Findings

The authors find that not all the factors associated with the choice of sector (public or private) found in previous studies apply in the Botswana context.

Research limitations/implications

Perry and Wise (1990) developed the concept of public service motivation to explain why individuals may be motivated to serve the public. However, two of the factors associated with public service, intrinsic motivation, and altruism, were not predictive of a career choice in the public sector in Botswana, and thus may limit its generalizability outside of western developed countries.

Practical implications

In Botswana and other developing economies, government jobs are considered to provide lucrative and stable employment, and attract educated citizens regardless of motivations. However, as the private-for-profit sector is emerging, these countries could soon be facing serious competition for top university students, and will need to develop a strategy for attracting the best talents to choose employment in the public sector over career options in the private sector.

Originality/value

The present study seeks to further the understanding on how individuals make a career choice between public vs private sector management in a developing country.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 45 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 31 July 2020

Tuan Trong Luu

Though humble leaders can draw from their own resources to nurture employees' sense of well-being, this impact appears neglected in the leader humility literature. The aim…

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Abstract

Purpose

Though humble leaders can draw from their own resources to nurture employees' sense of well-being, this impact appears neglected in the leader humility literature. The aim of this study is to unfold how and when leader humility contributes to the well-being of employees in the public sector.

Design/methodology/approach

Participants in our research came from wards (grassroot level governments) in Vietnam.

Findings

The results lent credence to role of job crafting in mediating the relationships between leader humility and the physical, psychological and social well-being among public employees. The positive nexus between leader humility and job crafting was found to be stronger when employees demonstrated low levels of public service motivation.

Originality/value

This study advances the understanding of public sector employees' well-being via the predictive role of leader humility and the mediation mechanism of job crafting.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 50 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 July 2022

Sanket Sunand Dash, Rajneesh Gupta and Lalatendu Kesari Jena

Public service motivation (PSM), among actual and prospective employees in the public sector, lead to positive work outcomes. However, there is limited integration of PSM…

Abstract

Purpose

Public service motivation (PSM), among actual and prospective employees in the public sector, lead to positive work outcomes. However, there is limited integration of PSM with existing motivational theories, especially self-determination theory (SDT). The impact of destructive leadership styles on PSM is also understudied. The study aims to fill the gap.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used a cross-sectional survey of 693 public sector officials employed in Indian Railways to test the hypotheses. PLS-SEM was used for the analysis. The study found that fulfillment of basic psychological needs (BPN) at work leads to improved PSM while BPN partially mediates the positive/negative effect of constructive/destructive leadership styles like servant/autocratic leadership on employees' PSM.

Findings

Autocratic/servant leadership was negatively/positively and significantly related to PSM and to all three BPN needs. Servant leadership was found to be positively and significantly related to all three BPN needs, while the BPN needs partially mediated the relationship between servant leadership and PSM.

Research limitations/implications

The study identifies servant leadership as a driver of PSM and suggests that managers employed in public sector establishments should be trained to be less autocratic and more attuned to subordinates' needs. The baneful impact of autocratic leadership on employee PSM is highlighted. The cross-sectional nature of study makes it susceptible to common-method bias. The sample was limited to a single country. Future longitudinal and experimental studies based on samples drawn from multiple countries can yield more robust results.

Originality/value

The study advances the integration of PSM with SDT by identifying PSM with introjected motivation. It is also the first study to link destructive leadership styles with a reduction in employees' PSM. It identifies a counterintuitive, negative relationship between competence need satisfaction and PSM in the Indian public sector.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 35 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

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