Mastering Public Administration: From Max Weber to Dwight Waldo

Mastering Public Administration: From Max Weber to Dwight Waldo

Mastering Public Administration: From Max Weber to Dwight Waldo

Mastering Public Administration: From Max Weber to Dwight Waldo

Synopsis

A comprehensive summary of the work and contributions of the leading theorists in public administration. Fry's original essays focus on the pioneers in the field whose work largely shaped its current contours. They include: Max Weber, Frederick Taylor, Luther Gulick, Mary Parker Follett, Elton Mayo, Chester Barnard, Herbert Simon and Dwight Waldo.

Excerpt

The intellectual genesis of this book is probably not unusual. The idea arose from a casual request by a colleague for a single reference that would summarize the work and significance of Frederick Taylor and the Scientific Management movement. I was hard pressed to render appropriate advice. General textbooks typically deal with the subject too briefly. Books on the specific subject are too long. Excerpts in readers are not comprehensive. What my colleague wanted was a single source of manageable length that would summarize, in a fairly comprehensive manner, the works and contributions of a major author in the field of public administration. In this book I intend to provide such a source for a collection of leading authors in the field.

A key to the success of this effort is the authors chosen for inclusion. It should be noted at the outset that the book is not meant to be a treatise on the current status of the field of public administration. It is more concerned with origins and how we got where we are than with current status. Consequently, I focus on authors who were pioneers in public administration and whose work largely shaped the current contours of the field. These authors areMax Weber,Frederick Taylor, Luther Gulick,Mary Parker Follett,Elton Mayo,Chester Barnard, Herbert Simon, and Dwight Waldo. The diversity of these authors reflects the diversity of the field of public administration. Several disciplines are represented, with Gulick, Simon, and Waldo trained in political science; Mayo in psychology; Follett in English, political economy, and history; Weber in economics and law; Barnard in economics; and Taylor in mechanical engineering. The level of education also varies, ranging from Barnard, who never received an undergraduate degree, through Weber, Gulick, Simon, and Waldo, who earned Ph.D.s. Follett had an undergraduate degree, and Taylor and Mayo held masters' degrees. They are almost evenly split between academics and practitioners, though there is substantial overlap in those categories. Taylor, Barnard, and Follett were primarily practitioners; Mayo, Weber, Simon, and Waldo are, or were, basically academicians. Gulick has a legitimate claim to membership in both groups.

Perhaps the significance of these authors is best revealed by placing them in the context of the history of the study of public administration . . .

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