Human Resource Management in European Public Services:Ambiguities, Tensions, and Contradictions in the Reform Process
AbstractThis collection of articles spread over two issues of the Review of Public Personnel Administration consists of eight case studies reporting and analyzing new human resource management (HRM) practices in selected European public services. Collectively, they cover staff communication and consultation, job satisfaction, HRM reforms and organizational performance, learning and development, and public services as employers of choice. Individually, these studies examine changes in the managing of people at different levels of government— centrally, regionally, and locally. The significance of each case is that it is linked with public management reforms, or modernization of public services, so each provides some insights into the interactions between developments in HRM and the modernization process. These articles also highlight some of the ambiguities, tensions, and contradictions inherent in the reform process. It is these ambiguities, tensions, and contradictions that have to be managed by public managers, supported by human resources specialists, in conditions of change.