Skip to main content

Diversity Management in the Public Sector

  • 12 Accesses


Diversity management – managing diversity; Employee work outcomes – employee performance; Productivity – efficiency; Service delivery – public service


Diversity management refers to the manner in which differences are managed among the workforce.

Public Sector Reforms involve changes that have been made to the public sector since the 1980s in order to improve performance.

Heterogeneous workforce is considered here as a workforce that has people with different backgrounds and attributes.


Diversity management (DM) has become one of the critical concerns of public sector reforms in recent times because of demographic and population shifts in society. The notion is that public organizations can achieve their organizational objectives like service delivery more effectively through DM (Ohemeng and McGrandle 2015). According to Klarsfeld, Booysen, Ng, Roper, and Tatli (2014), different countries demonstrate three key characteristics of DM at work:...

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  • Chidiac E (2018) Strategic management of diversity in the workplace: a comparative study of the United States, Canada, United Kingdom and Australia. Routledge, New York

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Deborah J, Judith P, Shepherd D (2000) “Managing diversity” meets Aotearoa/New Zealand. Pers Rev 29(3):364–380

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Haq R (2012) The managing diversity mindset in public versus private organizations in India. Int J Hum Resour Manag 23(5):892–914.

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Houkamu C, Boxall P (2010) The incidence and impacts of diversity management: a survey of New Zealand employees. Asia Pac J Hum Resour 49(4):440–460

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Jabbour CJ, Gordono FS, Oliveira JH, Martinez JC, Battistelle RA (2011) Diversity management: challenges, benefits, and the role of human resource management in Brazilian organizations. Equal Divers Incl 30(1):58–74

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Klarsfeld A, Booysen LA, Ng E, Roper I, Tatli A (2014) International handbook on diversity management at work, country perspectives on diversity and equal treatment, 2nd edn. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham

    Google Scholar 

  • Milner S (2017) Trade unions, equality and diversity: an inconsistent record of transformative action. Work Employ Soc 31(1):191–196

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Naff CK, Kellough JE (2003) Ensuring employment equity: are federal diversity programs making a difference? Int J Public Adm 26(12):1307–1336

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Ohemeng F, McGrandle J (2015) The prospects for managing diversity in the public sector: the case of the Ontario Public Service. Public Organ Rev 15:487–507

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Powell M, Johns N (2015) Realising the business case for diversity: a realist perspective on the British National Health Service. Soc Policy Soc 14(2):161–173

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Rotundo M (2012) In: Hayton J, Brion M, Christiansen LC, Kuvaas B (eds) Global human resource management casebook. Routledge/Taylor & Francis Group, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Stone RJ (2017) Human resource management, 9th edn. Wiley, Milton

    Google Scholar 

  • Thomas RJ (1990) From affirmative action to affirming diversity. Harv Bus Rev 68:107–117. Retrieved from

  • Wambui TW, Wangombe JG, Muthura MW, Kamau AW, Jackson SM (2013) Managing workplace diversity: a Kenyan perspective. Int J Bus Soc Sci 4(16):199–218

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Inayah Ali .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2021 Springer Nature Switzerland AG

About this entry

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this entry

Ali, I., Appana, S., Narayan, J. (2021). Diversity Management in the Public Sector. In: Farazmand, A. (eds) Global Encyclopedia of Public Administration, Public Policy, and Governance. Springer, Cham.

Download citation

  • DOI:

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-319-31816-5

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-319-31816-5

  • eBook Packages: Springer Reference Economics and FinanceReference Module Humanities and Social Sciences