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Strategies for GoverningReinventing Public Administration for a Dangerous Century$
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Alasdair Roberts

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781501714405

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501714405.001.0001

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Summary of Propositions

Summary of Propositions

(p.23) Chapter 1 Summary of Propositions
Strategies for Governing

Alasdair Roberts

Cornell University Press

This chapter summarizes the propositions that are emphasized within the proposed macro-level approach to public administration. These propositions suggest that the fundamental unit of political organization is the state. Every state has leaders; that is, a relatively small group of people who have substantial influence over the ordering of state goals and the means by which those goals are pursued. Generally, leaders try to maintain and improve their own positions within the state apparatus; increase power and legitimacy within the state system; increase power and legitimacy within the state's own territory; and increase national prosperity. In addition, leaders ought to advance human rights for the population that is subject to their authority. The behavior of leaders is guided by governance strategies that describe priorities and the means by which those priorities will be pursued. The chapter then details the aspects of the governing environment which must be taken into account as leaders set priorities and decide how those priorities will be pursued. Ultimately, scholars and practitioners in the field of public administration should be experts in the overall design, construction, administration, and renovation of those institutions that constitute a state. They should use this expertise to help leaders craft governing strategies that are effective, durable, and normatively defensible.

Keywords:   public administration, political organization, state, state leaders, state goals, human rights, governance strategies, governing environment

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