The dichotomy of public administration article critique

Document Type:Case Study

Subject Area:Management

Document 1

The nature of this relationship and the exact role the administrators are supposed to play have remained subject to debate. There are arguments on whether there should be unity between public administrators and politicians or there should be a separation in the relationship. Few observers state that this relationship between the administrators and the society has changed over time. Traditionally, a balance between the capacities of administrators and the political control of the public was expected as it was stated in the institutions of judiciary and electoral. They advocated for policies that defined the roles of administrators. Furthermore, this article states that there has been no alternative for dichotomy until after the 1930s where public administration scholars pioneered for the need of interaction.

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The scholars in support of this claimed that dichotomy concealed the powers of administrators. To avoid cases where scholars argue that public administration started small and has now grown, the issue of complementarity came in whereby politics and administration had to join hands so that sound governance is achieved. Each one of these elements complements the other to become whole. Complementarity acknowledges that there should be interdependence between administrators and the elected officials. However, in as much as the author find the direction towards which this relationship is heading, I feel like it will bring more harm than good to the society. Initially, the dichotomy idea encouraged accountability of administrators and responsibility. This separated the administrators from interferences from the politicians and their contributions towards the designing and the implementations of public policies.

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However, over the years, the relationship between administrators and politicians has evolved and presently it encourages their interactions, a model of complementarity. This now encourages the elected politicians to interact with the administrators so that jointly they pursue common sound governance. These interactions require that each of these parties respect each other and know that each has to stick to their codes of ethics given their work environments. Other than that, the relationship would not be healthy because it would be leading to more damages than good. It is also right that a dichotomy existed in the past so that we can understand the relationship between the public administrators and the many actors in new governance. Freedom of interaction will become good only if each member knows their boundaries and stick by them.

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The administrators play the role of shaping policies and give it meaning and content in time for implementation. Dichotomy had its advantages as well as disadvantages ( Svara,2001). First is that it played the role of avoiding the influences of politics on policymaking that affected the public, on the contrary, it hindered effective governance that required the cooperation of both the legislature and the public administrators. However, the complimentary politics and public administration worked on the disadvantage of a dichotomy public administration but needs the maximum discipline of the public administrators not to fall prey to the influence by politicians. Further improvements could be done in this study to include the effectiveness of this evolution and how it will benefit the future generations.

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