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Towards a New Public Unitarism: Employment and Industrial Relations in the Australian Public Service

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 January 2023

John O’Brien
Affiliation:
School of Industrial Relations and Organisational Behaviour, University of New South Wales
Michael O’Donnell
Affiliation:
School of Management and Policy, University of Canberra

Abstract

This article traces the transformation of the Australian federal public service from an administrative towards a more managerial model of the state. The paper will argue that the process has been uneven and, at times, contested. A particular feature of the paper will be a discussion of the role of organised labour in the process. The paper outlines the central features of the administrative state model and the emerging features of the managerial model of the state. The focus of the paper is on the employment and industrial relations characteristics of public service employment. Comparison will be made between the different paths taken by the Labor government from 1983 and the Coalition government since 1996.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Author(s) 2002

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