By Edoardo Ongaro, Professor of Public Management at The Open University Business School.
There is a sense in which ‘Public Administration’ – and its key variations on the theme, namely ‘Public Management’ or ‘Public Governance’ – are seen as a ‘technical field’, an area of study and professional practice which should have grown into a purely scientific endeavour, but for some weird reason has not yet fully achieved that status.
Akin to other fields like environmental studies or labour psychology, also Public Administration would be amenable – this line of reasoning goes – to being studied as a technical-scientific subject. Certain ‘solutions’ would then be found, and any reasonable government in the world would then adopt them – or be held to account by its citizens if it failed to do so.
But is this narrative convincing?
Read more about Professor Ongaro’s answer in his blog here.