One cannot begin to digest the dichotomy of public administration without first examining a theorist at the forefront of the field, Woodrow Wilson. Wilson along with civil servants promoted civil service reform in 1880. This catapulted the field of public administration into scholastics. Woodrow Wilson stated that, “Our own politics must be the touchstone for all theories--the principles on which to base a science of administration for America must be principles which have democratic policy very much at heart.” Within the lines of this paper we will compare and contrast several theorists and theories related to public administration as it relates to the supporting the development of administration and politics as it relates to today’s society. Theorist that will be examined will include, but are not limited to Aristotle, Luther Gulick, Lorenz von Stein, Plato, Machiavelli, Max Weber, and Woodrow Wilson. From the standpoint of public administration social science, literature in general, “bureaucracy” means much more than the various characteristics of modern organization (Stillman, 2010).
Public Administration Mind Map
There are many definitions and opinions as to exactly what public administration is or what it encompasses. One thing that holds true is that this area is linked heavily to political science (Starling, 2008). This field encompasses a wide variety of areas and certainly cannot be contained in a bubble—narrow definitions will not do public administration justice. Managers in all public organizations are continually dealing with uncertainty and unexpected events, whether it is something as small as the loss of key employees or something as large and as dramatic as a terrorist attack, a hurricane, or an earthquake (Starling, 2008). Random House unabridged dictionary states that public administration houses the implementation of government policy and academic discipline that studies this implementation and that prepares civil servants for this work (Encyclopedia Britanica, 2001). Because of the wide variety of definitions of the field of public administration, there is really no definition that has the true ability to define this field in a “nutshell.”
In one’s daily life and associations with others it is the overall aim of that person to portray and actually do well. Aristotle believed that man “man is a political animal”: one can only achieve the good life by living as citizens in a state (Miller, 2011). He made it absolutely clear that he believed in and supported private property, defended slavery, and condemned slavery. Aristotle proposed the distributive justice principle stating that benefits should be conferred upon different citizens differently, depending on the contributions they make on the contribution they make to the well-being of the state (Miller, 2011). Eudemonia is defined according to Aristotle, as what the good life of a man and women turns out to be (Starling, 2008). One does not set goals and have aspirations to have a bad life, but it happens. Each person actually has an inbread goal to be successful, happy, and at peace. This theorist stated that there are two things regarding how to obtain eudemonia (Starling, 2008): 1. It’s virtually impossible to obtain happiness directly—it’s always a dividend. 2. We obtain happiness by practicing courage, temperance, prudence, and justice. As a career in public administration is considered on must consider every possible pressure that will undoubtedly come from every angle and in order to reach eudemonia great effort must be put into the practice of morals, ethics, courage, and justice. Luther Gulick
Gulick’s theory obviously was leveraged by the skills or job objective of management should be. With regard to public administration, he is well known for his use of the acronym, POSDCORB (Starling, 2008). This acronym stood for plan, organizes, staff, direct, coordinate, report, and...
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