The Public Encounter - Dynamics of Citizen - State Interactions

Publikation: AfhandlingDoktorafhandling


This thesis puts the citizen-state interaction at its center. Building on a comprehensive model incorporating various perspectives on this interaction, I derive selected research gaps. The three articles, comprising this thesis, tackle these gaps. A focal role plays the citizens’ administrative literacy, the relevant competences and knowledge necessary to successfully interact with public organizations. The first article elaborates on the different dimensions of administrative literacy and develops a survey instrument to assess these. The second study shows that public employees change their behavior according to the competences that citizens display during public encounters. They treat citizens preferentially that are well prepared and able to persuade them of their application’s potential. Thereby, they signal a higher success potential for bureaucratic success criteria which leads to the employees’ cream-skimming behavior. The third article examines the dynamics of employees’ communication strategies when recovering from a service failure. The study finds that different explanation strategies yield different effects on the client’s frustration. While accepting the responsibility and explaining the reasons for a failure alleviates the frustration and anger, refusing the responsibility leads to no or even reinforcing effects on the client’s frustration. The results emphasize the different dynamics that characterize the nature of citizen-state interactions and how they establish their short- and long-term outcomes.
Bevilgende institution
  • Universität Potsdam
Dato for forsvar3. dec. 2019
StatusUdgivet - 2019
Udgivet eksterntJa


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