Gender Dimensions of Public Service Motivation
Public Adminstration Review, pp. 873-887, November/December 2006
Posted: 24 May 2009
Date Written: May, 19 2009
Feminist scholars of public administration have critiqued the dominance of masculine imagery in public administration theory and practice. However, public service motivation is one area of public administration discourse that contains both feminine and masculine imagery. Focusing on Perry’s multidimensional public service motivation scale, the authors borrow from a range of social science literatures to contend that compassion is a feminine dimension of public service motivation, whereas attraction to policy making and commitment to public service are masculine dimensions. Data from a survey of public managers in state health and human service agencies reveal that women score higher on Perry’s compassion subscale but also on attraction to policy making. No statistically significant gender differences were found on commitment to public service.
Keywords: public service motivation, gender
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