Behavioral public administration is a subfield that deals with the integration of theories and  methods from psychology in the study of public administration. It has three main components: 1) uses individuals and groups of citizens, employees, and managers within the public sector as units of analysis; 2) emphasizes the behavior and attitudes of these groups; and 3) integrates insights from psychology and the behavioral sciences in the study of public administration. As governments face increasing challenges in addressing the growing complexity of society including citizens’ rising expectations regarding the quality, availability, and effectiveness of government services, public-sector performance and productivity must continually be upgraded.
Behavioral public administration is a developing theory that provides complementary approaches to policy design and implementation. While behavioral economics describe individual decision-making with alternative objectives to traditional utility maximization, behavioral public administration shifts the reliance on traditional causal models toward actual behavior as governments improve their governance and administrative ability.
This course aims to contribute to the enhancement of public-sector performance and productivity through better administrative leadership and improved public management and administration. The course will offer practical explanations of the basic concepts and principles of behavioral public administration and present best practices of its applications in the public sector.

Course Objectives

The main objectives of this course are:

  • Understand the theories and concepts of behavioral public administration to enhance public-sector performance and productivity.
  • Learn about best practices of behavioral public administration through its use and applications.
  • Impart knowledge of the integration of behavioral approaches in public-sector administration.

Course Modules

This e-learning course will cover the following modules:
Module 1: Theory and concept of behavioral public administration
Module 2: Uses and benefits of behavioral public administration in public services and policymaking
Module 3: Behavioral approaches to public administration: Discussions on future developments of advanced behavioral public policy 
Module 4: Applications of behavioral public administration 
Module 5: Behavioral approaches to public policy, regulation, and governance

Important Notes:

  1. Participants who register to take this course and pass the final examination with a score of 70% or higher will be eligible to receive the APO certificate. Please note that the final examination can be taken only once. Therefore, the most appropriate time to take the examination should be chosen carefully. The self-assessment quizzes are for personal evaluation only and are not related to the final examination results.
  2. Participants who perform well in this course and receive the APO certificate will be given preference, on a merit basis, for selection to attend follow-up face-to-face multicountry APO projects on similar topics, when nominated by their NPOs and if slots are available.
  3. Notes 1 and 2 are applicable only to participants from APO member countries. Participants from nonmember countries are welcome to take the course for self-improvement, although they will not have an opportunity to attend the follow-up face-to-face multicountry APO projects.
  4. Each module is in a prerecorded video format in which the expert delivers presentations by explaining each slide. Participants can access the video by clicking on the link provided under the title of each module.

Course Duration in Hours: 14 hours
Skill Level: Beginner
Upcoming Course: No
New Course: Yes