There are three aspects of professionalism that require consideration and will receive attention in turn: the acquisition of expertise in administration; the selection of officials from men qualified by special training or skills; and the devotion of full-time energies to administrative careers. McKisack concluded from her studies that the qualification of experience played an important role in influencing the selection of M.P.s, both in the sense of prior parliamentary experience, as indicated by re-elections, and familiarity with borough affairs and administration. We may extend this thesis to borough government as a whole and ask whether, despite the reluctance of men to serve in office too frequently, the burgess community was not wary of appointing rank amateurs to positions of importance in local administration, instead preferring to establish a hierarchy of experience reflecting the hierarchy of offices that we have already seen. This is the conclusion drawn, explicitly by Hammer regarding Oxford's government and by Petchey for early modern Maldon, and implicitly by Rogers who points out that the upper ranks of Stamford's council in the latter half of the fifteenth century were occupied by men with a tradition of two to three decades of continuous service.
Structure of Borough Government | Social and Economic Background of Office-Holders
Monopolisation of Office | Attitudes Towards Office-holding | Professionalism in Administration
Quality of Government | Conflict and Solidarity in Urban Politics
|Created: July 30, 1998||© Stephen Alsford, 1998-2003|