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Title: Risk management in Irish government departments : a practice of professionalisation
Author: Sullivan, Cyril
ISNI:       0000 0004 5367 296X
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2015
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The study explores the practice of risk management in Irish Governments and asks if it can be understood as a practice of professionalisation. Firstly, its formulation, employment and deployment are evaluated. Secondly, the motivation of senior civil servants to operate it as they do is examined. A two-tier framework facilitates a critical analysis of risk management as a professional practice (the 'what' and 'how' questions of the study), whereas the concept of institutional isomorphism provides a basis to assess risk management as a practice of professionalisation of senior civil servants (the 'why' question). To be considered a professional is significant as it conveys a prestige of practice and reflects valuable intrinsic traits of expertise, competence and ethical behaviour. If professional status were to be linked to the civil service, it would provide significant benefits in that the civil service would be perceived to be managed to the highest standards possible and open to further constant professional development and reform leading to expert competent managers or professional managers, however, there is a dearth of formal reviews as to what a professional senior civil service is and how it might be achieved. This study looks to go some way to addressing this gap by examining whether the practice of risk management can be understood as a practice of professionalisation for the Irish civil service. The study finds that senior civil servants deploy the practice of risk management primarily as a means of managing and governing their departments. By using risk management in this way, senior civil servants are operating the practice as a key facet of departmental governance structures. Despite the absence of any government directive to operate risk management, the study finds that there is a commitment by senior civil servants to risk management practice that is indicative of professionalisation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Gov.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available