Public Administration in Great Britain


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In the study of public administration, it is conventional to focus on the cases of Germany and France. These two countries are considered exemplar models of the evolution of public administration. Germany stands out due to the quality of its public service and training in public administration, whereas France enjoys a celebrated reputation earned by its intendances (quartermasters) and policies of centralization. 

In contrast, Great Britain tends to appear less attractive of a case and with minor contributions to the field, despite the prestige achieved by its civil service (usually considered inferior to the German and French). Similarly, its administrative thought is commonly perceived as underdeveloped and unsubstantial. Naturally, these perspectives originate from a poor understanding of the evolution of British administration. Therefore they tend to be based on wrong and biased interpretations. On the contrary, Great Britain offers a fascinating case, as the hidden secrets of its public administration provide a wide and stimulating research agenda. 

Motivated by the entrenched misunderstanding of the British administration, I researched the topic extensively and published a book entitled La Administración Pública en Gran Bretaña (Public Administration in Great Britain) in 2012. This book draws together historical evidence about the compelling trajectory of administrative thought in Great Britain, and provides a novel perspective to understanding public administration in the country. I believe that this book fills an important gap in the literature, and does justice to the eminent British thinkers that have been ignored or forgotten, even in the English literature.

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