Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Public Administration and Policy

Content Description

1 online resource (ii, ix, 127 pages) : illustrations

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Sue R Faerman

Committee Members

David P McCaffrey, Kevin J Williams


basic psychological need satisfaction/frustration, organizational culture, organizational socialization, p-o fit, public service motivation (PSM), transformational leadership, Public administration, Civil service, Employee motivation, Motivation (Psychology), Employees

Subject Categories

Public Administration


Over the past few decades, research on public service motivation (PSM) has flourished internationally in the field of public administration. The concept of PSM, i.e., motivating public sector employees to pursue the public interest and thus contribute to the society, fits well within the core interest of public administration. In addition, PSM has been found to be associated with important organizational constructs that are related to public sector employees’ attitudes, behaviors, and performance. There have, however, been surprisingly few studies that have examined PSM in public domains other than the executive branch of government. Moreover, while there is a large body of research on the effects of PSM on pre-organizational antecedents of PSM, there is far less research that addresses the antecedents of PSM that organizations can influence. In an attempt to address these gaps in the literature, the present study uses data obtained from staff members working in the offices of the Assembly members of the 19th National Assembly of South Korea (N = 221) during the summer of 2017, and examines the organizational antecedents of PSM that can be controlled. Using structural equation modeling (SEM) and a bootstrapping method, this study produced interesting findings regarding the relationships among PSM and several important antecedents. First, this study found that transformational leadership and adhocracy and clan cultures positively affect person-organization fit (P-O fit). Second, this study found that language socialization and market and clan cultures affect relatedness frustration. Third, this study found that relatedness frustration and P-O fit affect PSM while competence frustration has no link with PSM. Finally, this study found support for the mediating effects of relatedness frustration and P-O fit in the relationship between PSM and transformational leadership, language socialization, and organizational culture (market, adhocracy, and clan). The current study offers a variety of theoretical implications and practical lessons regarding leadership and the work environment as mechanisms for fostering employees’ PSM.