Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 6

Bureaucracy Related Abstracts

6 Civil Service Reforms in Kazakhstan and Its Influence on Modernization

Authors: Aliya Idrissova


Civil service (public administration) is an important social institution of society properties. Civil service institution had a significant impact on modernization processes in Kazakhstan through ensuring the functioning of all the subsystems of social life. This article is an attempt to analyses the reforms of public service institution in Kazakhstan and to assess its influence on modernization processes.

Keywords: modernization, Bureaucracy, Kazakhstan, civil service, a national model of civil service, civil service reforms

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5 Developing Commitment to Change in Egyptian Modern Bureaucracies

Authors: Nada Basset


Purpose: To examine the nature of the civil service sector as an employer through identifying the likely ways to develop employees’ commitment towards change in the civil service sector. Design/Methodology/Approach: a qualitative research approach was followed. Data was collected via a triangulation of interviews, non-participant observation and archival documents analysis. Non-probability sampling took place with a case-study method applied on a sample of 33 civil servants working in the Egyptian Ministry of State for Administrative Development (MSAD) which is the civil service entity acting as the change agent responsible for managing the government administrative reforms plan in the civil service sector. All study participants were actually working in one of the change projects/programmes and had a minimum of 12 months of service in the civil service. Interviews were digitally recorded and transcribed in the form of MS-Word documents, and data transcripts were analyzed manually using MS-Excel worksheets and main research themes were developed and statistics drawn using those Excel worksheets. Findings: The results demonstrate that developing the civil servant’s commitment towards change may require a number of suggested solutions like (1) employee involvement and participation in the planning and implementation processes, (2) linking the employee support to change to some tangible rewards and incentives, (3) appointing some inspirational change leaders that should act as role models, and (4) as a last resort, enforcing employee’s commitment towards change by coercion and authoritarianism. Practical Implications: it is clear that civil servants’ lack of organizational commitment is not directly related to their level of commitment towards change. The research findings showed that civil servants’ commitment towards change can be raised and promoted by getting them involved in the planning and implementation processes, as this develops some sense of belongingness and ownership, thus there is a fair chance that low organizationally committed civil servants can develop high commitment towards change; given they are provided a favorable environment where they are invited to participate and get involved into the move of change. Originality/Value: the research addresses a relatively new area of ‘developing organizational commitment in modern bureaucracies’ by virtue of investigating the levels of civil servants’ commitment towards their jobs and/or organizations -on one hand- and suggesting different ways of developing their commitment towards administrative reform and change initiatives in the Egyptian civil service sector.

Keywords: Change, Bureaucracy, Egypt, commitment

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4 From Bureaucracy to Organizational Learning Model: An Organizational Change Process Study

Authors: Vania Helena Tonussi Vidal, Ester Eliane Jeunon


This article aims to analyze the change processes of management related bureaucracy and learning organization model. The theoretical framework was based on Beer and Nohria (2001) model, identified as E and O Theory. Based on this theory the empirical research was conducted in connection with six key dimensions: goal, leadership, focus, process, reward systems and consulting. We used a case study of an educational Institution located in Barbacena, Minas Gerais. This traditional center of technical knowledge for long time adopted the bureaucratic way of management. After many changes in a business model, as the creation of graduate and undergraduate courses they decided to make a deep change in management model that is our research focus. The data were collected through semi-structured interviews with director, managers and courses supervisors. The analysis were processed by the procedures of Collective Subject Discourse (CSD) method, develop by Lefèvre & Lefèvre (2000), Results showed the incremental growing of management model toward a learning organization. Many impacts could be seeing. As negative factors we have: people resistance; poor information about the planning and implementation process; old politics inside the new model and so on. Positive impacts are: new procedures in human resources, mainly related to manager skills and empowerment; structure downsizing, open discussions channel; integrated information system. The process is still under construction and now great stimulus is done to managers and employee commitment in the process.

Keywords: Bureaucracy, Organizational learning, Organizational change, E and O theory

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3 The Relationship between Conceptual Organizational Culture and the Level of Tolerance in Employees

Authors: M. Sadoughi, R. Ehsani


The aim of the present study is examining the relationship between conceptual organizational culture and the level of tolerance in employees of Islamic Azad University of Shahre Ghods. This research is a correlational and analytic-descriptive one. The samples included 144 individuals. A 24-item standard questionnaire of organizational culture by Cameron and Queen was used in this study. This questionnaire has six criteria and each criterion includes four items that each item indicates one cultural dimension. Reliability coefficient of this questionnaire was normed using Cronbach's alpha of 0.91. Also, the 25-item questionnaire of tolerance by Conor and Davidson was used. This questionnaire is in a five-degree Likert scale form. It has seven criteria and is designed to measure the power of coping with pressure and threat. It has the needed content reliability and its reliability coefficient is normed using Cronbach's alpha of 0.87. Data were analyzed using Pearson correlation coefficient and multivariable regression. The results showed among various dimensions of organizational culture, there is a positive significant relationship between three dimensions (family, adhocracy, bureaucracy) and tolerance, there is a negative significant relationship between dimension of market and tolerance and components of organizational culture have the power of prediction and explaining the tolerance. In this explanation, the component of family is the most effective and the best predictor of tolerance.

Keywords: Tolerance, Organizational Culture, Bureaucracy, Adhocracy

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2 Enabling Rather Than Managing: Organizational and Cultural Innovation Mechanisms in a Heterarchical Organization

Authors: Sarah M. Schoellhammer, Stephen Gibb


Bureaucracy, in particular, its core element, a formal and stable hierarchy of authority, is proving less and less appropriate under the conditions of today’s knowledge economy. Centralization and formalization were consistently found to hinder innovation, undermining cross-functional collaboration, personal responsibility, and flexibility. With its focus on systematical planning, controlling and monitoring the development of new or improved solutions for customers, even innovation management as a discipline is to a significant extent based on a mechanistic understanding of organizations. The most important drivers of innovation, human creativity, and initiative, however, can be more hindered than supported by central elements of classic innovation management, such as predefined innovation strategies, rigid stage gate processes, and decisions made in management gate meetings. Heterarchy, as an alternative network form of organization, is essentially characterized by its dynamic influence structures, whereby the biggest influence is allocated by the collective to the persons perceived the most competent in a certain issue. Theoretical arguments that the non-hierarchical concept better supports innovation than bureaucracy have been supported by empirical research. These prior studies either focus on the structure and general functioning of non-hierarchical organizations or on their innovativeness, that means innovation as an outcome. Complementing classic innovation management approaches, this work aims to shed light on how innovations are initiated and realized in heterarchies in order to identify alternative solutions practiced under conditions of the post-bureaucratic organization. Through an initial individual case study, which is part of a multiple-case project, the innovation practices of an innovative and highly heterarchical medium-sized company in the German fire engineering industry are investigated. In a pragmatic mixed methods approach media resonance, company documents, and workspace architecture are analyzed, in addition to qualitative interviews with the CEO and employees of the case company, as well as a quantitative survey aiming to characterize the company along five scaled dimensions of a heterarchy spectrum. The analysis reveals some similarities and striking differences to approaches suggested by classic innovation management. The studied heterarchy has no predefined innovation strategy guiding new product and service development. Instead, strategic direction is provided by the CEO, described as visionary and creative. Procedures for innovation are hardly formalized, with new product ideas being evaluated on the basis of gut feeling and flexible, rather general criteria. Employees still being hesitant to take responsibility and make decisions, hierarchical influence is still prominent. Described as open-minded and collaborative, culture and leadership were found largely congruent with definitions of innovation culture. Overall, innovation efforts at the case company tend to be coordinated more through cultural than through formal organizational mechanisms. To better enable innovation in mainstream organizations, responsible practitioners are recommended not to limit changes to reducing the central elements of the bureaucratic organization, formalization, and centralization. The freedoms this entails need to be sustained through cultural coordination mechanisms, with personal initiative and responsibility by employees as well as common innovation-supportive norms and values. These allow to integrate diverse competencies, opinions, and activities and, thus, to guide innovation efforts.

Keywords: Innovation Management, Values, Bureaucracy, heterarchy

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1 Kitchen Bureaucracy: The Preparation of Banquets for Medieval Japanese Royalty

Authors: Emily Warren


Despite the growing body of research on Japanese food history, little has been written about the attitudes and perspectives premodern Japanese people held about their food, even on special celebratory days. In fact, the overall image that arises from the literature is one of ambivalence: that the medieval nobility of the Heian and Kamakura periods (795-1333) did not much care about what they ate and for that reason, food seems relatively scarce in certain historical records. This study challenges this perspective by analyzing the manuals written to guide palace management and feast preparation for royals, introducing two of the sources into English for the first time. This research is primarily based on three manuals that address different aspects of royal food culture and preparation. The Chujiruiki, or Record of the Palace Kitchens (1295), is a fragmentary manual written by a bureaucrat in charge of the main palace kitchen office. This document collection details the utensils, furnishing, and courses that officials organized for the royals’ two daily meals in the morning (asagarei gozen) and in the afternoon (hiru gozen) when they enjoyed seven courses, each one carefully cooked and plated. The orchestration of daily meals and frequent banquets would have been complicated affairs for those preparing the tableware and food, thus requiring texts like the Chûjiruiki, as well as another manual, the Nicchûgyôji (11th c.), or The Daily Functions. Because of the complex coordination between various kitchen-related bureaucratic offices, kitchen officials endeavored to standardize the menus and place settings depending on the time of year, religious abstinence days, and available ingredients flowing into the capital as taxes. For the most important annual banquets and rites celebrating deities and the royal family, kitchen officials would likely refer to the Engi Shiki (927), or Protocols of the Engi Era, for details on offerings, servant payments, and menus. This study proposes that many of the great feast events, and indeed even daily meals at the palace, were so standardized and carefully planned for repetition that there would have been little need for the contents of such feasts to be detailed in diaries or novels—places where historians have noted a lack of the mention of food descriptions. These descriptions were not included for lack of interest on the part of the nobility, but rather because knowledge of what would be served at banquets and feasts would be considered a matter-of-course in the same way that a modern American would likely not need to state the menu of a traditional Thanksgiving meal to an American audience. Where food was concerned, novelty more so than tradition prompted a response in personal records, like diaries.

Keywords: Bureaucracy, banquets, Engi shiki, Japanese food

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