Department of Government
New publication

Public administration and public management

Is there a difference between Public Administration and Public Management as academic fields? In his newly published Chapter in Elgar Encyclopedia of Public Management, Per Lægreid claims there are no significant differences between the two.

A picture of Per Lægreid smiling

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In the entry named “Political Organizations and Public Management – An Institutional Approach”, Per Lægreid takes a closer look on the similarities between the two academic fields. The chapter applies an institutional perspective to public management as a political form of organization, an issue the author describes as a neglected issue in the New Public Management (NPM) turn in administrative reforms.

Public management is analyzed as part of a larger political-democratic order and system of governance, implying that history and context matter for how political-administrative systems are organized and how they change.A core argument in Lægreid’s chapter is that the organizational basis of governmental institutions is not simply a technical, apolitical matter but also mobilizes bias in various ways. The focus is on ‘living’ organizations and institutions and how they work in practice.

The chapter was published as a part of Elgar Encyclopedia of Public Management,  edited by Kuno Schedler. The full chapter is available at Elgar online.