Representation of the Social Capital Status in Policymakers’ Mental Models: The Case Study of the Discourse Running Through the Iranian Civil Service Management Law

Document Type : Research/Original/Regular


1 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Management and Accounting, College of Farabi, University of Tehran, Qom, Iran

2 Associate Professor, Faculty of Strategic Management, Supreme National Defense University, Tehran, Iran


In recent years, there have been numerous discussions about the renovation of managerial procedures in public organizations. The selection of new frameworks for the public sector management in accordance with the cultures and Constitutions of different countries such that the developmental policies and measures are facilitated is an inevitable necessity for the developing countries. The successfulness of such frameworks in practice will be possible through the attraction of citizens’ support, which is deeply influenced by the attention of policymaker to social capital and its dimensions. The Iranian Civil Service Management Law is one of the outcomes of such a viewpoint. In this study, the status of social capital in the discourses that run through this law was examined. To this end, the text of the law was analyzed through a qualitative-interpretive approach using discourse analysis method. In this study, 128 articles and 106 notes in 15 chapters were examined. The results revealed the presence of two discourses, namely morality-law and proper service provision in most of the chapters. The examination of the various chapters of the law text led us to conclude that the mental model amplifying social capital is evident in chapters 1, 2, and 3. This trend begins to weaken in chapters 4 and 5, and hits its lowest point in the important chapters 6, 7, and 8 that are about entry into organization, employment, and promotion. Accordingly, it is suggested that content, structural, and behavioral revisions be made in the majority of chapters to facilitate the application and enforcement of this law by inducing justice, trust, transparency, and cooperation.


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