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Ombudsperson

Ombudspersons serve as an informal resource for individuals who struggle with interpersonal conflict, violation of institutional policies, or the challenges caused by increasing bureaucratization in organizations. Originally arising as a “voice of the people” for citizens to navigate claims against government, ombudspersons (also called ombudsman or ombuds) have been established through legislation or institutional policy in government, private corporations, not-for-profit organizations, and academic institutions. Organizational ombudspersons, the focus of this entry, are situated outside regular management channels and possess no other formal or adjudicative role, but seek fair and just process. Established as a less formal resource for employees than traditional rights-based procedures, the office of the ombudsperson provides a safe place to investigate options; obtain information on policies, procedures, rights, and responsibilities; and learn ...

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