Favoritism, Fairness and Equity in the Federal Workforce: Perceptions, Impacts and Recommendations for a Strong Merit System

Rían Zuberi (Editor)

Series: Social Issues, Justice and Status
BISAC: BUS038000



Volume 10

Issue 1

Volume 2

Volume 3

Special issue: Resilience in breaking the cycle of children’s environmental health disparities
Edited by I Leslie Rubin, Robert J Geller, Abby Mutic, Benjamin A Gitterman, Nathan Mutic, Wayne Garfinkel, Claire D Coles, Kurt Martinuzzi, and Joav Merrick


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The Merit System Principles (MSPs) promote an effective Federal workforce free of Prohibited Personnel Practices (PPPs). The MSPs serve as the foundation of Federal employment policy and practice, workplace fairness, and the Federal Government’s ability to effectively accomplish its goals. The Merit System Principles guide Federal supervisors to base their workforce decisions on objective criteria, such as assessments of ability or performance, rather than personal feelings and/or relationships, lest they be viewed as practicing personal favoritism.

Favoritism is distinct from discrimination on legally protected bases and is frequently more difficult to clearly identify when it is occurring given the absence of visible cues on which the preference is made. However, like discrimination, favoritism is contrary to the ideals of the Federal merit systems. This book summarizes the findings of MSPB’s research into employee perspectives regarding the extent to which they believe that favoritism occurs within the Federal merit systems and its potential effects. (Imprint: Nova)


Chapter 1 - Preserving the Integrity of the Federal Merit Systems: Understanding and Addressing Perceptions of Favoritism (pp. 1-70)
U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board

Chapter 2 - Fair and Equitable Treatment: Progress Made and Challenges Remaining (pp. 71-148)
U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board


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