The role of administrative discretion in the coping behaviour of street-level bureaucrats in higher education institutions of Pakistan




Policy implementation, Coping behaviour, Street-level bureaucrats, Semester system policy, Coping technique, Discretionary power, Coping mechanism


Policies are created at the highest level, and street-level bureaucrats (SLBs) implement them at lower levels. SLBs work directly with citizens and exercise significant discretion in their service. According to Lipsky's theory, SLBs face various problems and use multiple coping techniques to deal with them. This study focused on the discretionary powers of the heads of departments (HODs) and the use of coping mechanisms when faced with challenges in enacting the semester system policy. The existing study used the theoretical model of coping mechanisms using a single-case research methodology to investigate the HODs of a prestigious public university's coping behaviour in implementing the semester system. Semi-structured interviews were employed to get the perspectives of HODs in this qualitative research. This study used the classification model of coping families developed by Tummers, Bekkers, Vink, and Michael (2015) and concludes that management has given HODs some task-discretionary authority for carrying out the semester system policy based on thematic analysis. The findings reveal that HODs move against the students rather than towards or away from them in coping behaviour. HODs strictly follow the semester system's policy by adhering to rigid rule-following.


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How to Cite

Naqvi, S. H. B., Salman, Y., Hassan, S., Gull, M., & Capraz, K. (2024). The role of administrative discretion in the coping behaviour of street-level bureaucrats in higher education institutions of Pakistan. Journal of Humanities, Social and Management Sciences (JHSMS), 5(1), 135–159.



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