Generational changes in patterns of politicization. A study of the local civil service in France

Special report: Generational policy (ies)
By Émilie Biland

When politicians employ public servants, do those people have specific attitudes toward politics and policies? This paper assesses this topic through trajectories and working practices of senior civil servants in French local governments. A mix of political sociology and of sociology of work, it focuses on generational patterns of political attitudes and thereby renews the thesis of "politicized" public managers. It demonstrates that new patterns in careers, increasing diploma requirements, reduced social mobility, increasing geographical mobility and decreasing steady employment contracts result in less personalized relations toward politicians, although political screening remains strong.


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