The Process and Organization of Government Planning

The Process and Organization of Government Planning

The Process and Organization of Government Planning

The Process and Organization of Government Planning

Excerpt

This has been a difficult book to write. From the outset I have been aware of conflicting temptations. Since this is a record made possible only by my own government service, how far should it embody purely personal observations? Since we do not have yet any full account of the work of the National Resources Planning Board, how far should I attempt a historical and analytical record of that agency? Finally, for so essentially dynamic a subject as government planning, ought we not to look forward to the problems of the future? If the result of these conflicting temptations is in effect a compromise, is it then as unsatisfactory as compromises traditionally are from all particular points of view?

I have long felt the need for more personal accounts of individual experiences in public administration. Much of the writing which makes up the present available literature of the field deals with abstractions and generalities which mean very little to a person without some experience in actual administrative operations. The generalizations are important, and we need them. But it has long seemed to me that we need the accumulation of many personal experiences as a sounder basis for our generalizations.

And public administration is necessarily personal. The lawyer and the politician may say all they wish about "a government of law." We live in a society of men, and any organization is at best a continuing problem in the adjustment of individual personalities to each other and to a common . . .

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