Dissertation: Ethical minimum is not enough for the citizens – requirements to increase ...

Uutisen oletuskuva
Requirements to develop public service ethics are increasing in Finland. Ethical management and governance rely largely on regulation at the moment, according to M.Sc. Venla Mäntysalo's dissertation in Public Management.
Väittelijän mukaan Suomeen tarvitaan laajempi eettisen toimintakulttuurin ja eettisen johtamisen asennemuutos.

In the ethics management strategies ethical values also play a significant role, and regulation alone does not guarantee ethics in public service.

“According to the citizen survey Finnish citizen perceive there is room for improvement in the areas of justice and transparency of governance”, says Mäntysalo who will defend her doctoral thesis on Friday, 4th of March at the University of Vaasa.

What comes to the reform of public service, it entails a change in the public service ethos that needs to be adapted to the new environment. Ethos means professional, ethical spirit that translates into practice and management.

Dialogue, participation and interactional justice are needed in the development of ethical public service.

According to Mäntysalo, public service ethics framework in Finland relies to large extent to regulation, but there is a need to develop an integrity-based strategy in ethics management.

The results on the other support the notion that good governance works in Finland, but on the other hand citizens need a stronger experience of justice and open, communicative public service.

"The principles of good governance could be strengthened in practice by taking into account the feedback of citizens, by creating dialogue and enabling participation”, says Mäntysalo.

The results of the dissertation could be interesting from the point of view of developing administration and ethical public management. In the long run there is a need for an ethical culture on all levels of the organization and management.

Even if the traditional public sector values, such as equality, justice and integrity, are highly valued in the managers’ ethical profiles, there is no one distinct public service ethos.

The empirical evidence of the dissertation is based on citizens perceptions, collected from a Citizen Survey (with more than 2000 respondents), and on public sector managers’ perceptions, studied with a Q-methodological study measuring the subjective public service ethos (altogether 35 respondents).

Public defence

The public examination of M.Sc. Venla Mäntysalo’s doctoral dissertation  ”Ethical minimum or ethical maximum? Study on public ethics from the perspectives of justice, ethos and transparency in Finnish public administration will be held on Friday, 4th March at 12 o’clock at auditorium Kurtén (Tervahovi).

Professor Pertti Ahonen (University of Helsinki) will act as an opponent and Emeritus professor Ari Salminen (University of Vaasa) as a custos. The examination will be held in Finnish.

Publication orders and pdf

Further information:
Venla Mäntysalo, t. +358 40 5426794, e-mail: venla.mantysalo(at)uwasa.fi

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