Course code PolZ5010

Credit points 4

Public and Nongovernmental Sector

Total Hours in Course160

Number of hours for lectures24

Number of hours for seminars and practical classes24

Independent study hours112

Date of course confirmation30.09.2020

Responsible UnitInstitute of Social Sciences and Humanities

Course developers

author Sociālo un humanitāro zinātņu institūts

Dina Bite

Dr. sc. soc.

author doc.

Jānis Ķusis

Dr. hist.

Prior knowledge

PolZ5009, Public Administration

Soci5043, Sociological Theory

Course abstract

The study course deepens students' understanding on public and non-governmental sector, mechanisms of their functioning, paying special attention to research topicalities and sustainable development of organisations of public and nongovernmental sectors. The course examines the organisation of local governments and NGOs in Latvia and the world, analyses the role of local governments and NGOs in the political system of a democratic society. Study course improves the students` competence of analysing different situations in organisations and develop solutions.

Learning outcomes and their assessment

• Knowledge on local self-government’s institutions and nongovernmental organizations, spheres and principles of their action;
• skills to evaluate social changes and make solutions according to changes in the context of sustainable development of society;
• competence to use researches of social sciences in the process of planning, decision making and their implementation on the basis of analyzing and solving problems in the sphere of non- governmental organizations and public sector.

Course Content(Calendar)

1. General description of the public, non-governmental and private sector. Normative regulation of public and non-governmental sector (2 hours)
2. The concept and essence of local government (1 hour)
3. Local government theories (2 hours)
4. Competence of local governments (2 hours)
5. Analysis of local government organizational structure (2 hours)
6. Municipalities as service organizations (1 hour)
7. Involvement of the population in the work of local governments (1 hour)
8. Public, non-governmental and private sector partnership (1 hour)
9. Non-governmental organization as an expression of civil society (2 hours)
10. Classification of non-governmental organizations, characteristics (2 hours)
11. Application of social theories in the research of non-governmental organizations (2 hours)
12. NGOs as implementers of social innovations (2 hours)
13. Sources of funding for non-governmental organizations (2 hours)
14. Topicalities in public and non-governmental sector research (1 hour)
15. Sustainability of the public and non-governmental sector (1 hour)

List of practical work (24 hours):
1. Division of state power and place of local governments in it (1 hour).
2. Basic theories and doctrines of local governments (1 hour).
3. Administrative-territorial reform in Latvia (2 hours).
4. Decision making in the municipality - situation analysis (2 hours).
5. One-stop agencies/ shops - examples of good practice: presentations (2 hours).
6. Availability of information on municipal websites (2 hours).
7. Ethics in municipal work. Codes of ethics (1 hour).
8. Test: Development, organization and operation of local governments (1 hour).
9. The role of NGOs in decision-making at the municipal and state level, literature analysis and discussion (2 hours).
10. Analysis of the example of informal civil society, presentation of independent work (2 hours).
11. Assessment of the potential for the introduction of new forms of government, World Cafe method (2 hours).
12. Aspects of sustainable management, NGO development scenarios, discussion (1 hour).
13. Analysis of social entrepreneurship and social innovations - group work (1 hour).
14. Topicalities of non-governmental sector research - group work (1 hour).
15. Evaluation of civil society and non-governmental sector in Latvia, presentation of independent work (3 hours).

Requirements for awarding credit points

2 independent works must be elaborated and presented. A test during seminars and written exam in the end of the course. All practical works must be done.

Acquisition of the study course in distance learning is organized in accordance with the order of the Vice-Rector for Studies “On the procedure of e-studies at LLU”, a study course acquisition schedule is created for each semester. Students acquire the topics included in the study course independently, using the materials created and inserted by the lecturer in the e-learning environment Moodle. Feedback on the acquisition of topics in lectures and seminars in distance learning is organized in the form of self-examination tests, discussion forums and individual assignments, as well as face-to-face or online consultations, lectures and final examinations according to the schedule.

Description of the organization and tasks of students’ independent work

The studies of scientific literature. Elaboration and presentation of 2 independent works, preparing for written exam.

Criteria for Evaluating Learning Outcomes

Exam. Its criteria for assessment of learning outcomes consist of: written exam – 40%, independent works – 40%, test – 20%.

Compulsory reading

1. Gortner H.F., Nichols K.L., Ball C. Organization theory: a public and nonprofit perspective: 3rd edition. Belmont: Wadsworth/Thomson Learning, 2007. 436 p.
2. Anheier H.K., List R.A. A dictionary of civil society, philanthrophy and the non-profit sector. London: Routledge, 2005. 306 p. Grāmata pieejama datubāzē EBSCO ebook collection LLU tīklā un ārpus LLU tīkla ar LLU IS lietotājkontu
3. Lewis D. Management of non-governmental development organizations: an introduction. London: Routledge, 2005. 242 p.
4. Lewis D., Kanji N. Non-Governmental Organisations and Development. London: Routledge, 2009. 239 p.
5. The nonprofit sector: a research handbook. W.W. Powell, R. Steinberg (eds.). 2nd ed. New Haven; London: Yale University Press, 2006. 659 p.
Grāmata pieejama datubāzē EBSCO ebook collection LLU tīklā un ārpus LLU tīkla ar LLU IS lietotājkontu
6. Cambridge handbook of culture, organizations, and work. R.S. Bhagat, R.M. Steers (eds.). New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009. 537 p. Grāmata pieejama datubāzē EBSCO ebook collection LLU tīklā un ārpus LLU tīkla ar LLU IS lietotājkontu
7. Pūķis M. Pašu valdība. Latvijas pašvaldību pieredze, idejas un nākotnes redzējums. Rīga: Latvijas Pašvaldību savienība, 2010. 512 lpp.
8. Vaidere I. u.c. Reģionālā politika un pašvaldību attīstība Eiropas Savienībā. Rīga: LU Akadēmiskais apgāds, 2008. 296 lpp.
9. Vanags E, Vilka I. Pašvaldību darbība un attīstība. Rīga: LU Akadēmiskais apgāds, 2005. 384 lpp.
10. Vanags E., Vilka I. Valsts pārvaldes un pašvaldību organizācija. Rīga: LU Akadēmiskais apgāds, 2009. 225 lpp.

Further reading

1. Kolb B.M. Marketing research for non-profit, community and creative organizations: how to improve your product, find customers and effectively promote your message. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann, 2008. 276 p.
2. McNabb D.E. Research methods in public administration and nonprofit management : quantitative and qualitative approaches. 2nd ed. New York: M.E.Sharpe, 2008. 458 p.
3. Rags Z. Pašvaldības un to darbības tiesiskais pamats demokrātiskā valstī. Rīga: Latvijas policijas akadēmija, 2000. 306 lpp.

Periodicals and other sources

1. Latvijas Pilsoniskās alianses iknedēļas elektroniskais ziņu izdevums "Nesēdi tumsā". Pieejams:
2. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly. Pieejams:
3. Voluntas: Official Journal of International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations. Pieejams:
4. Iknedēļas elektroniskais Latvijas Pašvaldību savienības izdevums. Pieejams:


Mandatory study course in the ESAF academic master's study program "Sociology of Organizations and Public Administration".