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Public administration

Public administration is the implementation of government policy and also an academic discipline that studies this implementation and prepares civil servants for working in the public service. As a "field of inquiry with a diverse scope" whose fundamental goal is to "advance management and policies so that government can function". Some of the various definitions which have been offered for the term are: "the management of public programs"; the "translation of politics into the reality that citizens see every day"; and "the study of government decision making, the analysis of the policies themselves, the various inputs that have produced them, and the inputs necessary to produce alternative policies." Public administration is "centrally concerned with the organization of government policies and programs as well as the behavior of officials usually non-elected formally responsible for their conduct". Many non-elected public servants can be considered to be public administrators, including heads of city, county, regional, state and federal departments such as municipal budget directors, human resources HR administrators, city managers, census managers, state mental health directors, and cabinet secretaries. Public administrators are public servants working in public departments and agencies, at all levels of government. In the United States, civil servants and academics such as Woodrow Wilson promoted civil service reform in the 1880s, moving public administration into academia. However, "until the mid-20th century and the dissemination of the German sociologist Max Webers theory of bureaucracy" there was not "much interest in a theory of public administration". The field is multidisciplinary in character; one of the various proposals for public administrations sub-fields sets out six pillars, including human resources, organizational theory, policy analysis, statistics, budgeting, and ethics.


Statecraft (political science)

Statecraft is an approach to the study of political science and public administration that was first developed by Jim Bulpitt. It understands politics and policy making in a polity by focusing on governing challenges and strategic choices by the leadership at the top of government. Toby James used Bulpitts original work to develop a neo-statecraft approach which could be used to understand politics and policy making across many political systems.


Administrative discretion

In public administration, administrative discretion refers to the flexible exercising of judgment and decision making allowed to public administrators. Regulatory agencies have the power to exercise this type of discretion in their day-to-day activities, and there have been cases where regulatory agencies have abused this power. Administrative law can help these agencies get on the path of following regulations, serve the public, and in turn, a reflection of the publics values and beliefs. There is a need for administrative law because the interest of public could be at risk if various agencies were not following laws and regulations. Administrative law is important because without it, it could lead to arbitrary and unreasonable use of such discretion, which may lead to destruction of basic principles of administrative law. Although this type of discretion isnt laid out in the job-description of a bureaucrat/public servant, it is necessary because citizens use these bureaucratic institutions every day; such as the D.M.V., public schooling, and numerous others. Street-level bureaucrats have to deal with the provision of service as well as translating vaguely worded mandates into specific cohesive and comprehensive language to organize protocol. Administrative discretion allows agencies to use professional expertise and judgment when making decisions or performing official duties, as opposed to only adhering to strict regulations or statuses. For example, a public official has administrative discretion when he or she has the freedom to make a choice among potential courses of action. The failure to exercise reasonable judgment or discretion is abuse of discretion. "I think that in our system of government, where law ends, tyranny need not begin. Where law ends, discretion begins, and the exercise of discretion may mean either beneficence or tyranny, either justice or injustice, either reasonableness or arbitrariness." - Kenneth Culp Davis


Advocacy evaluation

Advocacy evaluation, also called public policy advocacy design, monitoring, and evaluation, evaluates the progress or outcomes of advocacy, such as changes in public policy. Advocacy evaluators seek to understand the extent to which advocacy efforts have contributed to the advancement of a goal or policy. They do this in order to learn what works, what does not, and what works better in order to achieve advocacy goals and improve future efforts. Advocacy evaluation is different from policy analysis, which generally looks at the results of the policy, or mainstream program evaluation, which assesses whether programs or direct services have been successful. Advocacy strives to influence a program or policy either directly or indirectly; therefore, the influence is being evaluated, rather than the results of that influence.


American Society for Public Administration

American Society for Public Administration is a membership association of almost 10.000 professionals in the United States sponsoring conferences and providing professional services primarily to those who study the implementation of government policy, public administration, and, to a lesser degree, programs of civil society. Its annual conference is an important meeting for those interested in bureaucracy, civic engagement, program evaluation, public management and other public administration topics, such as budgeting and budget theory, government strategic planning, policy analysis, contract administration, personnel management, and related topics. American Society for Public Administration was founded in 1939, following growing concerns about the management of federal government and the report of the Brownlow Committee. It was formally incorporated on September 13, 1945. American Society for Public Administration sponsors the journal Public Administration Review, Journal of Health and Human Services Administration, Public Budgeting and Finance, and other leading international journals related to its over 30 working membership sections.


Autonomous Communities Administration

The Administration of the Autonomous Communities, also known as Autonomous Administration, is a Public Administration of Spain. It belongs to the second level of the Public Administrations, because it exerts its powers within the limits of each Autonomous Community. It is integrated by: Peripheral Administration Territorial Delegations of the Autonomous Communities, Sectoral Delegations of the Government Departments. Central Organization. The Autonomic Administration has a very broad level of competence, based on the decentralization of the State or through the State of Autonomies. As for the level of competences, they are not always the same, and are regulated in each Statute of Autonomy for each Autonomous Community, making in some cases the level of competences is higher than those of a Federal state. It should also be taken into account that the Autonomous Community has its own legislative body, and that the autonomous administration must behave before it like any other executive power, respecting the rules issued by its autonomous parliament. In the Spanish Constitution of 1978 it is regulated in Chapter Three, entitled "of the Autonomous Communities". This Chapter regulates the form of creation and authorization of the Autonomous Communities, the elaboration of its Statutes, the powers transferred to the Autonomous Communities, the powers of the State, its resources and its financing.