Public Policy and Public
Public Administration is one of the most important things in the world; but it has little sex-appeal.
US administrative reformer Louis Brownlow, quoted in Spann (1955)
Public administration in Australia was initially built upon inherited British traditions that were later interwoven with United States approaches to administrative science.The early formative influences of the field in Australia were academic and professional. Unlike those in the US Wilsonian tradition, Australian writers considered policy and administration as integrated dimensions in a Westminster-based utilitarian government. Practically oriented scholars of public administration rejected any notion of a policy–administration dichotomy. In the 1930s a number of universities established dedicated academic positions and diploma courses in public administration, aimed at training graduates for the public service and at contributing to scholarship (see Scott and Wettenhall's 1981 history of the field). The universities of Sydney and Tasmania, and Victoria College, Wellington, created specialised departmental units to teach public administration, often aligned to economics and commerce, but largely following the emerging US practice of specialist university training. Key local texts included: Planning and the Modern State (1945) and Budget Control (1946), by F.A. Bland, State Socialism in Victoria (1932) by F.W. Eggleston, and various government or royal-commission reports.
The study of public administration was also initiated and dominated by professional public servants across the three levels of government, interested in ideas and sharing experiences. An Institute of Public Administration linked to its English counterpart (formed in 1922) was active in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. This association founded the Australian Journal of Public Administration in June 1939 (originally called Public Administration – the Journal of the Australian Regional Groups of the Institute of Public Administration). The original editor and guiding influence was F.A.