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Performance Management by Culture in the NLRB’s Division of Judges and the German Labor Courts of Appeal


  • Martin Schneider

    (Institute for Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the EC, University of Trier)


Professional judges receive a fixed salary and are largely exempt from disciplinary sanctions. How can performance still be secured? Judges share a culture consisting of work-related norms and values, derive status from their standing within the professional community, and are susceptible to peer review. Hence, performance can be managed by maintaining and directing culture. This is illustrated in a case study on the administrative law judges at the U.S. National Labor Relations Board and the judges at the German labor courts of appeal. In both judiciaries, administrative tasks such as personnel selection are delegated to peers, candidates with known norms and values are recruited, and a quantitative benchmarking appeals to judges’ norms and values. In sum, performance management relies in each case on professional culture although the two communities of judges belong to differing national cultures and are governed by differing administrative rules.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Schneider, 2002. "Performance Management by Culture in the NLRB’s Division of Judges and the German Labor Courts of Appeal," IAAEG Discussion Papers until 2011 200205, Institute of Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the European Union (IAAEU).
  • Handle: RePEc:iaa:wpaper:200205

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    File Function: Revised version, 2002
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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Matthews, Robin C O, 1991. "The Economics of Professional Ethics: Should the Professions Be More Like Business?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(407), pages 737-750, July.
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    More about this item


    performance management; organizational culture; labor judiciaries;

    JEL classification:

    • J45 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Public Sector Labor Markets
    • M12 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Personnel Management; Executives; Executive Compensation
    • K49 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Other


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