Public Administration

Public Administration

Public Administration

Public Administration

Excerpt

This book represents an approach to the subject of public administration that evolved first in the practice of administration and then in the classrooms of the authors and some of their friends. Our teaching, following upon some years of participation in governmental organizations, has made us acutely aware of two major instructional problems. The first problem is to make sure that what we teach about public administration accurately reflects what goes on in the real world of government--that it makes sense when applied to the actual experiences of administrators. The second problem is to convey these experiences to the student in such a way as to give him concrete pictures of how people behave in governmental organizations, to enable him to visualize situations he has experienced only in a very limited way, if at all, and to prevent him from forming elaborate abstract verbalizations that he cannot translate into concrete patterns of behavior.

The reader can judge for himself how far we have solved these problems. We should like to indicate, however, the principal guides we followed in attempting to give the book realism and intelligibility.

1. Emphasis. There appear to be three major areas of interest in public administration today. First, there is the question of how the major governmental structures--Federal, state, and local-- should be organized or reorganized. Interest in this question is at a high level as a result of the reports of the Hoover Commission, and several state reorganization studies currently under way. Second, there is a growing awareness that there is a "human aspect" to administration, that administration is concerned with the behaviors of human beings. A considerable body of current research in administration is concerned with the psychology of administra-

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