Civil Service Commission 1855-1991 (British Politics and Society Series): A Bureau Biography

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Overview

The Civil Service Commision was created in 1855 and became the key institution in the development of the British civil service. Its work was primarily the recruitment of civil servants by fair methods, treating all qualified applicants equally, and using open competitions wherever practicable. It was held in high esteem not only in the United Kingdom but also in the many other countries throughout the world which, in many places, modelled their methods of public service recruitment on its pioneering work. It continued until 1991, when most of its work was devolved to over 3,000 government departments and executive agencies.
This book describes the gestation, growth, development and eventual demise of the Commision and includes a number of in-depth case studies. Using source material such as official files, many only recently available for research, together with other records and evidence to official committees, the book provides a biography of an institution. It shows how the department was formally organised and there is a particular focus on how it actually worked on a day-to-day basis. With three in-depth chapters on the chronological development of the Commision and seven case studies of themes or issues that reveal methods of work and influences on its activities, this book uses file-based research more extensively than any other history of a British government department.
The Civil Service Commision, 1855-1991 reveals insights into civil service recruitment and makes a major original contribution to our understanding of the practice and politics of public administration.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780714653402
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 11/1/2004
  • Series: British Politics and Society Series
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard A. Chapman is Emeritus Professor of Politics in the Durham Business School. He previously taught at Carleton University, Canada and the universities of Leicester, Liverpool, Birmingham and Durham. He is foundation Academician of the Academy of Learned Societies for the Social Sciences. His previous books include Ethics in the British Civil Service (1988), The Treasury in Public Policy-Making (1997) and Leadership in the British Civil Service (1984)

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Table of Contents

Note on terms used in the Civil Service Commission
1 Introduction : the Civil Service Commission 1
Pt. I The rise and fall of the Civil Service Commission 9
2 The period from 1855 to 1920 11
3 The period from 1921 to 1951 41
4 The period from 1952 to 1991 66
Pt. II Competition, confidentiality and complacency 91
5 The growth of working relationships 93
6 Setting standards in the civil service 125
7 The case of Arthur Creech Jones : clerk in the Civil Service Commission 140
8 Centenary celebrations 156
9 The effects of Fulton 175
10 Administrative culture 194
11 'Bias' in selection 220
Pt. III The Civil Service Commission in British public administration 247
12 The Civil Service Commission : a bureau biography 249
App Civil Service Commissioners 1855-1991 264
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