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Robert M. La Follette
School of Public Affairs
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Madison, WI 53706

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Performance management is topic of Nov. 6 seminar

How the success of performance management in improving organizational performance is contingent on the level of managerial authority will be discussed in a noon seminar on Tuesday, November 6, in the La Follette School conference room.

Poul Aaes Nielsen, a Ph.D. candidate in political science at Aarhus University, will present “Does ‘Letting Managers Manage’ Really Work? Performance Management, Managerial Authority and Public Service Performance.”

Public sector organizations have widely adopted performance management systems but often with limited success. A central, though untested, notion behind performance management reform is that increased managerial authority should accompany results-based accountability, giving managers the flexibility to engineer performance-oriented change. Using a four-year Danish panel of more than 45,000 students, Nielsen will present evidence showing that how well performance management improves organizational performance appears to depend on the level of managerial authority and that distinguishing among dimensions of that authority is important.

— posted November 1, 2012