What is the Study of Public Management | Regenesys

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Do you think you have the potential to be a leader? Are you someone who can formulate strategy, work through issues, and satisfy the emotional and motivational requirements of a team? If so, you might be an ideal candidate for a lucrative job in public management

This is especially true if you believe that you can significantly improve society and public spaces. The relationship between policymaking and management is, after all, a critical one for professionals in a public service field, whether through a governmental, voluntary, or private-sector organisation. 


  • What is public management?
  • Public management vs public administration 
  • The importance of public management
  • Why study for a Master of Public Management?
  • What you cover in a master’s degree in public management
  • Careers for Master of Public Management graduates

What is public management?

Public management involves the implementation of government policy, using state resources to promote the development and welfare of a country’s population. The duty and process of carrying out managerial activities for public organisations is known as public management. 

Public management seeks to improve these organisations’ operational effectiveness and service delivery standards. To realise their deliverables, public managers analyse public policy and demand the necessary course of action. Public managers may operate from within or outside state institutions (Hughes, 2017).

Public management vs public administration 

Although “public management” and “public administration” are not entirely synonymous, these terms can be used interchangeably in many contexts. The former alludes to understanding and conceptualisation, whereas the latter often refers to the practical application of the former. Both  deal with how to manage state resources for the public good (Henry, 2015). 

“The public administration” – the machinery of the state, from national and provincial government down to municipal (local) government – is responsible for implementing policy through the daily activities and logistics required at each level, such as putting out and tracking tenders, and monitoring the projects that flow from them to provide communities with services. 

The importance of public management

Public management is essential for the construction and running of equitable society, as well as taking charge and alleviating stress in times of crisis. Senior public managers are involved in the development and implementation of transformational policies to improve the lives of all citizens, paying particular attention to the previously disadvantaged.

Why study for a Master of Public Management?

Master of Public Management programmes are designed to equip senior public managers, and those who aspire to join their ranks, with the knowledge and know-how to plan, implement policy, run successful projects, and manage their departments and stakeholders, given a thorough understanding of relevant theory, alongside opportunities to apply the techniques they learn in the safe space of their classrooms.  

Graduates who work in public management will be expected to make the most of available – and finite – resources, guarantee the success of the initiatives they oversee, and ensure the sustainability of these initiatives.

master of public management

What you cover in a master’s degree in public management

Which of the disciplines needed in the public service interests you? Typically, a master’s degree in public management will cover:

  • Strategic human resource management;
  • Organisational development;
  • Public policy development and implementation;
  • Research methodology;
  • Strategic public project management;
  • Monitoring and evaluation;
  • Public finance;
  • Sustainable development;
  • Governance and intergovernmental relations;
  • Public ethics and corporate governance;
  • Economics; and 
  • Strategic management in the public sector.

Should you choose to read for your qualification at Regenesys School of Public Management, you will also be able register for two of these specialist electives:

  • Comparative Management Trends
  • Labour Relations
  • Mentoring and Coaching
  • Quality and Customer Service Management
  • Negotiation and Conflict Management
  • Information and Communication Technology

You would wrap your studies up with a dissertation designed to solve a public service or nongovernment organisation problem, establishing yourself as an expert in the field.

Careers for Master of Public Management graduates

As a graduate, you will be able to wield a distinctive combination of academic expertise, practical know-how, and an understanding of the difficulties in the public service environment, with a good grasp of how to manage them. All will contribute to broadening your career options.

One of the wonderful things about studying public management is that this is a broad field encompassing a wide range of positions and skill sets. 

The entities that need public management graduates include:

  • Government departments (education, health, transport, etc);
  • Basic and higher education institutions;
  • Nongovernmental organisations;
  • Parastatals (state-owned enterprises); and 
  • Private-sector organisations that work closely with government and its departments.

Master of Public Management degree holders may also find themselves drawn to the private sector as development directors, consultants, or policy analysts.


  • Henry, N. (2015). Public administration and public affairs. Routledge.
  • Hughes, O.E. (2017). Public management and administration. Bloomsbury Publishing.

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Andrew Semenya

MPM, BA Hons Tutor | Regenesys School of Public Management


MPM, BA Hons Tutor | Regenesys School of Public Management

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