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Revolution and Public Administration

  • The insight that politics and administration should be treated as separated spheres is not new, as already Wilson portrayed administration as the apolitical execution of law. Consequently, even if the spheres are distinct, there is no politics thinkable without administration to execute. However, as argued by Peters (2018: 164), “this presumed separation of administration and politics allows them [bureaucrats] to engage in politics.” While the consequences and causes of revolutions for political systems and the economy are at the forefront of debates in the respective disciplines, scholars have paid scant attention to the role of bureaucracies in revolutions. Against this background, this entry maps the efforts of public administration theory to come to grips with what is understood as revolution. As public administration is of utmost relevance in the context of revolutions, and the scope of the role of administrations in revolutions can be manifold: they may be the passive recipient of change, may influence developments actively, or be more or less unaffected by a change of the political system. This entry conceptualizes which potential positions in revolutions can be taken by the public administration and which consequences revolutions have for the bureaucracy from a theoretical viewpoint, and provides humble empirical evidence of administrative behavior in revolutions worldwide.

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Author:Rahel M. Schomaker
Parent Title (English):Global Encyclopedia of Public Administration, Public Policy, and Governance
Publisher:Springer International
Place of publication:Cham
Editor:Ali Farazmand
Document Type:Part of a Book
Year of Completion:2019
Publishing Institution:Deutsches Forschungsinstitut für öffentliche Verwaltung
Release Date:2020/01/24
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt