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What Is the Field of Public Management?

Public management requires you to be a leader who can create plans and solve problems in order to make a difference in the public sphere. Read on to learn more about this field.

Overview of Public Management

Both nonprofit organizations and public companies need managers to oversee and direct their operations. If you worked in the field of public management, you might be responsible for these tasks. As a public manager, you would also be expected to maximize your resources and ensure that programs under your direction integrate into an increasingly global world. It is because of this extra responsibility, which goes beyond merely running day-to-day operations, that public management is sometimes seen as distinct from public administration, a related field.

Important Facts About Public Management

Job Outlook (2016-2026) 10% growth (for administrative services managers)
Median Salary (2018) $96,180 (for administrative services managers)
Similar Occupations Purchasing manager, cost estimator, top executive
Key Skills Analytical, leadership, and communication skills

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Options

Public management education programs offer a variety of general management skills. They can also teach you how to apply these skills to the management of nonprofit or governmental programs. Typical topics you might study in a public management program include marketing management, negotiation strategies, planning, philanthropy, public policy and economics.

Degrees

Some schools offer a major in public management that prepares you for entry-level positions in the field. Public administration is a closely related major, but no matter which major you choose, you might need to pursue an advanced degree to compete for jobs. Master's degree programs in public management are widely available. These programs prepare you to assume leadership positions in the field.

Certificates

If you've already begun a career in public management or don't want to devote yourself to a degree program, certificate programs are also available. Completing one of these certificate programs may lead to greater career opportunities. Some public management certificate programs require you to have earned a bachelor's degree prior to entry.

Career Options

Careers are available in several areas if you choose to study public management. With a bachelor's degree or certificate, you might find work in various departments of public organizations, including budgeting, public policy analysis, community development or human resources. After earning a master's degree, you are able to work as a manager or administrator of public programs. There are many organizations and governmental departments that require workers with these levels of training, including churches, hospitals, the U.S. Department of Education and the Environmental Protection Agency, as well as others. You can visit PublicServiceCareers.org to search for jobs in public management as well as other public job sectors.