Viranhaltijoiden suhtautuminen kuntalaisosallistumisen lisäämiseen kuntahallinnossa
Public administrators’ perceptions of public engagement in local government
This article is an empirical study of the attitudes of public administrators toward public engagement. Currently there is a gap in the research on the attitudes of senior public servants who are important gate-keepers for the implementation of public engagement policies. This article contributes to filling this gap in the research by using interviews with senior public servants in a Finnish municipality. The study reveals that the administrators positively value citizens and
their participation. However, there are differing views concerning the relationships between the new models of civic participation and the traditional models of planning and decision-making. The results indicate that there is an ongoing
cultural change within the administration. The main factors that undermine the realization of public engagement policy can be divided into legislative, organizational, individual and cultural capacities.