Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Public Administration and Policy

Content Description

1 online resource (viii, 125 pages) : illustrations

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Sue Faerman

Committee Members

David McCaffrey, Kevin Williams


goal setting, psychological empowerment, work context, Public administration, Civil service, Employee motivation, Goal setting in personnel management, Employee morale, Organizational effectiveness, Organizational behavior

Subject Categories

Organizational Behavior and Theory | Psychology | Public Administration


A substantial number of management and psychology studies have examined the positive effect of goal setting on organizational outcomes (Locke & Latham, 1990, 2002). Conceptually, goal setting theory is as applicable for motivating an employee in the public sector as it is for motivating an employee in the private sector (Latham, Borgogni, & Petitta, 2008). There have, however, been relatively few studies that have examined employee motivation as a linking mechanism between goal setting and employee performance in the context of public sector organizations (Perry, Mesch, & Paarlberg, 2006; Wright, 2001, 2004). In addition to suggesting the motivational mechanism underlying psychological empowerment, extant research has suggested that some organizational environments may enable or constrain the motivational influence of goal setting (Latham et al., 2008).