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A New Handbook of Political Science$
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Robert E. Goodin and Hans-Dieter Klingemann

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198294719

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198294719.001.0001

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Public Policy and Administration: An Overview

Public Policy and Administration: An Overview

(p.551) Chapter 24 Public Policy and Administration: An Overview
A New Handbook of Political Science

Barbara J. Nelson

Oxford University Press

Provides an overview of the progression of public policy research, from its origins in American assumptions of stability to contemporary concerns regarding the potential for ethical policy‐making. Three contentions exist regarding definitions of the policy process, marked by emphases on either the process as a whole, the individual problem solver, or a system of inputs, transformation, and outputs. Each is unified by the belief in a synergistic process. The history of the field is traced and four core imperatives emerge: holism, consequences, usefulness, and democracy. These four imperatives structure the theoretical tensions in public policy research.

Keywords:   administration, democracy, holism, policy process, public policy, stability, USA

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