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Working for Change: Making a Career in International Public Service

Derick W. Brinkerhoff and Jennifer M. Brinkerhoff
Working for Change: Making a Career in International Public Service
ISBN: 978-1-56549-203-5
2005/222 pages/LC: 2005001044
A Kumarian Press Book
"A wide variety of personal and professional issues are discussed in this very useful volume."—Jon Van Til, Voluntas

"Working for Change fills a real gap for students of international development. It is not just about how to find a job. It is about how to plan a career—how to find mentors and role models, to build networks and to make transitions. [It] will be an invaluable guide to students, and to faculty who advise them.”—Susan Holcombe, Brandeis University

"For the price of a paperback book, one gains private career counseling from serious practitioners who genuinely want us to take one or more paths upward to facilitate justice and social change....  The authors have written an important book that can serve as a self-diagnostic tool."—Public Administration and Development


A Foreword Magazine Book of the Year Finalist for 2005

Derick and Jennifer Brinkerhoff explore career paths in international public service, focusing on development management positions and offering practical guidance on finding the right mix of professional goals, degree programs, job opportunities, and personal values. They also present profiles that illustrate how real people have faced the choices that confronted them in the course of their careers.

The result is an ideal guide and resource for anyone considering work in public service, for professionals looking for a change of direction, and for university career faculty advisers.


Derick W. Brinkerhoff is distinguished fellow in international public management at the Research Triangle Institute. Jennifer M. Brinkerhoff is professor of public administration and international affairs and codirector of the Diaspora Program at George Washington University.


  • What Is Development Management?
  • The Service-Choice Spiral.
  • Self-Awareness.
  • Serving in Community.
  • Skills and Skill Building.
  • Where Will You Work?
  • Organizational Options for Service.
  • Career Evolution.
  • Sustaining Motivation for International Public Service: Service in Balance.
  • Afterword: The Practice of International Public Service.