Characteristics Of Public Organizations

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CHARACTERISTICS OF PUBLIC ORGANIZATIONS In our organizational analysis of NIMHANS, the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences in Bangalore, we begin with a question: Are public and private organizations fundamentally alike in some respects? The central elements of the argument supporting the theory that public and private organizations are fundamentally different in key respects are, first of all, that public interests differ from private interests, since the public sector must consider a broader set of norms and values. Many considerations must be weighed against each other, and democratic considerations, constitutional values and public welfare are given much more weight in public organizations than in private organizations. Second, the leaders of public organizations are accountable to citizens and voters rather than to special groups. Third, public organizations require a greater emphasis on openness, transparency, equal treatment, impartiality and predictability. Public organizations have leaders elected by popular vote. Also, public organizations differ from many private-sector organizations in that they are multifunctional. This means they cope with partly conflicting considerations, such as political steering, control, representation and participation by affected parties, codetermination of employees, sensitivity vis-à-vis users, transparency, publicity and insight into decision-making processes, predictability, equal treatment, impartiality,

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