After discussion, the thesis needs a revision to be improved as following:
Research Context and Questions
Your research takes place in an interesting context, but we need more information on it.
The public sector is a very different organization from State to State and giving some more
information on the public sector in the UAE will help you when it comes to justifying your
single case study approach as you will be able to identify systems where your findings might
have similar applicability. We suggest a separate chapter on Research Context following the
Introduction chapter where you can provide details about the public sector and the UAE.
This will help with your case study. (it could need around 3000 words)
Literature Review & Conceptual Framework
This chapter needs to be re-focused and re-written to provide a theoretical basis for the
At present, you cover a lot of different areas but without really getting into the depth you
need, or approaching them with a critical eye. As a result, much of the chapter feels a little
superficial and does not allow you to draw out the groundings of your work.
For example, you do not question in any way the push to make the public sector adopt
business practices – there is a whole literature on why this is not a prudent idea. You need
to cover New Public Management.
It would help if you decided what areas of literature you are going to use and examine them
in depth to construct your conceptual framework. Your CF can then provide a structure for
your literature review.
You cover many theories and concepts and because of this it appears superficial. Do you
really need stakeholder theory? You also discuss RBV, Dynamic capabilities and absorptive
capacity. Each of these concepts could be used as a theoretical lens in their own right. Each
have substantial bodies of literature associated with them.
A key concept appears to be value, yet this is not examined critically. What does value
mean in PSM? Once you establish this it may be clearer why this case is so interesting.
You need to demonstrate that you understand what a conceptual framework is. Please
show how you construct your CF. Explain the linkages between areas and the
relationships between concepts. This CF should then be used as a lens through which you
examine your research. It should enable you to structure your findings and analysis.
You may wish to refer to this again at the end of your thesis in your discussion and
conclusions and develop an enhanced CF or model based upon your findings.
Areas not covered that would seem to be of use to this thesis include, New Public
Management, Public Value, Public-Private Partnerships, Public Sector Innovation, (please
refer to the substantial body of work from Professor Borins), Systems of Innovation,
Public Administration and Governance
You should include some of the following:
Cinar, E., Trott, P., & Simms, C. (2019). A systematic review of barriers to public sector
innovation process. Public Management Review, 21(2), 264-290.
Borrins has written extensively on PSI, see below, yet not discussed or cited?
Borins, S. (1995). Public sector innovation: the implications of new forms of organization
and work. Governance in a changing environment, 260-287.
Borins, S. (2018). Public sector innovation in a context of radical populism. Public
Management Review, 20(12), 1858-1871.
Borins, S. (2002). Leadership and innovation in the public sector. Leadership & Organization
Borins, S. (2001). Public management innovation in economically advanced and developing
countries. International review of administrative sciences, 67(4), 715-731.
Borins, S. F. (2014). The persistence of innovation in government (Vol. 8). Brookings
Institution Press with Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation.
Borins, S. (2001). Innovation, success and failure in public management research: Some
methodological reflections. Public Management Review, 3(1), 3-17.
Borins, S. F. (2012). Making narrative count: a narratological approach to public
management innovation. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 22(1), 165-
• Here we need to see more engagement with the methods literature and more
justification of your approach.
• What are the arguments for theorizing from a single case study and why do they
work for your case?
• Please refer to the discussion on the value of single case research by:
• Eisenhardt; Dyer & Wilkins; and Sigglekov.
• You need also to explain how you build theory from a single case, the above
research will help here.
• More information is needed on the sample size. Did you reach saturation point?
What does 44 interviews mean – is this a large sample of the sector or a small
• Please make clear the unit of analysis here and that it is one case over multiple
• Your use of snowball techniques is fine but it does open up questions of
gatekeepers and identifying respondents. What steps have you taken to ensure
that no-one in your sample can be identified using the descriptions you have.
Results and Discussion
• At present your voice is lost in the findings chapter. You disappear in a set of several
quotes with very little input from you. It is not clear from this how you have used the
data or analysed it.
• Consider reformatting these chapters into themes which integrate your discussion
and the data. You should of course be using quotes, but not so many of them and
think about different ways in which to present your data.
• The findings need to be linked back to your conceptual framework and your
Research Questions. These should provide a basis for a structure for your findings. It
may be possible to develop an enhanced CF based on your findings to show that the
reality from your findings differ from the theory.
Conclusions & Contributions
• These need to be strengthened and justified more.
• You need to explain very clearly how you contribute to the literature. Please
identify one or two articles to which your research contributes to the discussion.
Your CF and enhanced CF or model could be a unique contribution.
• You can then discuss the implications for policy makers, industry and managers of
• Some of the tables of text are quite repetitive and don’t assist you in getting your