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Legal Professions at the Crossroads

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Edited By Dariusz Jemielniak

The book collects research-driven chapters from different disciplines: anthropology, sociology, management, and law. It addresses the issues of legal and administrative professionals’ identity, ethics, and workplace enactment. Through an analysis of different groups of lawyers and paralegals, conducted by quantitative or qualitative methods, it draws conclusions on the general condition of these occupations and their role in the society. In particular, the volume covers the issues of criminal judges’ roles, the interplay of law and politics in judicial decisions, and the ways they are standardized. It also addresses the topics of professional logic in public administration, as well as charisma and identity work among lawyers, including LLM students from top world programs. Through an analysis of qualitative interviews, it describes the legal workplace, especially in terms of time commitments. It also disputes the problems of professional ethics in everyday legal work.
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Competing Logics and Semi-professionals in Polish Public Administration

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Przemysław Hensel, Beata Glinka

In this paper, we study the competing logics that shape development of the semi-profession (Harper, 2007) of public servant in Polish public administration. Development of a professional identity – defined as professional self-concept based on beliefs, values, motives, attributes, and experiences (Slay & Smith, 2011) – is shaped by a number of factors: public policy, educational system, business environment, culture, history, religion, and transfer of experiences and knowledge between generations. In this study, we concentrate on just one category of forces that shape professions, namely, institutional logics, defined as patterns of practices, beliefs, and values that shape decisions and actions in a given organizational field (Thornton & Ocasio, 2008).

This chapter is structured as follows: First we provide an overview of research on competing logics in the context of professions. Then we describe the methodology used in our study for data gathering and analysis. In the next part, we present the three competing logics that were discovered in the course of our study. In the last part of the text, we offer theoretical discussion of the findings.

Traditionally, bureaucrats have not been considered a part of any profession because the nature of their jobs lacks important defining professional traits. Most importantly, in many administrative systems, being a bureaucrat does not necessarily require prolonged education or possession of expert knowledge. However, the work of public servants in the developed countries is being increasingly professionalized. Administrators must constantly upgrade their knowledge and subscribe...

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