Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Public Administration and Policy

Content Description

1 online resource (viii, 183 pages) : illustrations (some color)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Ellen V Rubin

Committee Members

Jennifer Dodge, Jared J Llorens


Discretion, Discrimination, Equal employment, Hiring, Personnel, Representative bureaucracy, Representative government and representation, Bureaucracy, Discrimination in employment, Same-sex marriage, Religion and politics

Subject Categories

Business Administration, Management, and Operations | Law | Public Administration


This dissertation evaluates representative bureaucracy, a public management theory that has been embraced by public management scholars and implicitly embraced by practitioners through the use of diversity hiring initiatives. The theory of representative bureaucracy posits that a bureaucracy will function better if the administrative arm of government, in addition to its political one, is representative of the public. This representativeness is achieved if the bureaucrat shares a common identity with the group or groups they are meant to represent. The three papers within this dissertation provide an analysis of how this theory translates into practice. Specifically, these papers examine the collateral effects of representation: the impact of representation on organizational health measures; the impact of representation on employee perceptions of fairness; and how the public interprets the role of a public servant after a bureaucrat engages in active representation.