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Defining and Changing the Culture of the Public Sector: An Evaluation of the Recruitment, Compensation, Discipline and Retirement Policies of Established and Non-Established Employees in Antigua

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posted on 26.09.2016, 12:11 by Fitzmore Burns
This thesis looks at the policies governing two groups of public sector employees—established and non-established workers—in Antigua and Barbuda, in the areas of recruitment, compensation, discipline and retirement. It provides an account of the views of employees at all levels of the public service in the areas under study. The thesis begins by establishing the background to the study, first considering its importance in light of the current fiscal situation affecting the service. It then gives a synopsis of the public sector, its historical origin, the role that the trade unions have played in politics, and the reasons why the policies governing the areas of recruitment, compensation, discipline and retirement need to be examined in light of the present culture. Empirical data were collected in a series of thirty interviews with participants drawn from the senior, middle and junior levels of the public sector (established workers, non-established workers and retired civil servants) and responses to a questionnaire survey of 116 people in over a dozen government ministries. Analysis of these data revealed no significant overall difference between established and non-established workers and their working culture, despite some perceptions to the contrary and despite the two parts of the public service being governed by separate pieces of legislation. It was also found that because of the evolution of the public sector, its governance and ties to political power, the relationship between politicians and public sector workers was personal in nature. Finally, despite the perceived tension among workers, the two groups were found to work in harmony, sharing a desire to move the sector forward. It is concluded that reform is needed in the areas mentioned, but the government must be willing to accept and embrace changes to the policies under review. In addition this study can be used as a benchmark for Small Island Developing states where there is need to change the culture from one of depending on the political directorate to one of independence towards personal development.



Courtney, Richard; Williams, Glynne

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Centre for Labour Market Studies

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University of Leicester

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