Integrating ideas into HRD policy analysis: Frames and HRD reforms in the public service

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This paper contributes to critical debates about HRD theory and practice, specifically from a policy perspective in a developing country’s landscape. Drawing on contemporary social and economic issues relevant to multiple global actors, the essay examines the politics of reforms and the role of ideas in HRD policy and decision making processes. The article argues that systematically integrating ideas into HRD policy-making process has the potential of enhancing our understanding of public service HRD reform outcomes, especially in developing contexts. This is particularly so considering that variables emphasized by dominant schools of thought – such as power, interests, institutions, and problems – often provide an inadequate explanation of HRD policy choices in developing countries. To illustrate the contribution of ideas to HRD policy-making analysis, this article examines the impact of policy frames, showing how they help actors define their interests, generate interpretations of pressing problems, and constrain actions. By reconstructing the history of civil service administrative reforms in an important developing country’s context – Nigeria, the paper demonstrates that a country’s frames often influence and shape reform policy outcomes and thus play a key role in explaining current HRD reform policies in the public service.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2016 University Forum for Human Resource Development (UFHRD) Conference, Manchester
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Global Development Institute


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