The Civil Service in Britain and France

By William A. Robson | Go to book overview

Chapter 12
THE SOCIAL BACKGROUND OF THE HIGHER CIVIL SERVICE

By R. K. KELSALL ( Senior Research Officer, London of School of Economics and Political Science)

WHAT, it may be asked, can one hope to gain by an inquiry into the social background of higher civil servants? Sir Warren Fisher, in his evidence before the Tomlin Commission, was highly critical of those who sought to raise this issue. 'When I am looking at a fellow, really I am not concerned with what his father was: I am concerned with what he is.' What possible bearing has a matter of this kind on the efficiency of the service?

The answer to such a challenge could take several forms. In the first place, the ordinary citizen knows that, since the reforms of the 1870s, recruitment to the main branches of the Service has been by open competition amongst those with the requisite education and abilities. He therefore naturally expects that, by this time, the proportions in which higher civil servants are drawn from the several social strata will roughly correspond to the relative size of those strata. If the figures suggest that this is not so, he is likely to conclude that the blame lies with recruitment policy or the educational system. He is unlikely to be readily convinced of the importance of other possible factors, such as the uneven social distribution of (a) the basic qualities needed for success in administrative work, or (b) aspirations to enter the administrative class. It is in accordance with the traditions of a democratic community that he should be fur- nished with such figures even if, in common with other pub- lished statistics, they are open to a variety of possible inter- pretations.

Apart from the need to show how the theoretical equality of opportunity to enter the public service is translated into prac-

-151-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Civil Service in Britain and France
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 191

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.