Citizens’ Perceptions of Government Responses to COVID-19 in Eight Countries

This study examines citizens’ perceptions of government responses in a multi-national context, by surveying residents in eight democratic nations affected by the pandemic: Canada, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Spain, South Korea, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Image by CDC

The Academic Job Market in Public Affairs: What Characteristics are Desired?

This study reports the results of a survey of several hundred public affairs faculty concerning what they look for when evaluating candidates for academic positions. Although fit with program needs is the most important criteria followed by publications, there is a great deal of diversity on what faculty value in job candidates. Faculty from PhD granting institutions place more emphasis on research and publications while those at non-PhD granting programs focus more on department fit and teaching experience.  Faculty with greater experience are more likely to emphasize letters of recommendation and the quality of the dissertation.

Job Interview

Testing the Theoretical Determinants of Political Control over the Bureaucracy: Taking Wood and Waterman Seriously

After a series of sophisticated studies on the interface between bureaucracy and electoral institutions, Dan Wood, and Dan Wood along with Rick Waterman, concluded that it had been established that electoral institutions can control the bureaucracy, and research was now needed to move to the more interesting questions about what factors facilitate or limit this control. Using a unique data set of over 1,000 public organizations, plus an interrupted time-series assessment of political control that is analogous to those used by Wood, this paper systematically tests several hypotheses about political control of the bureaucracy.  This paper tests a series of such hypotheses from spatial theory, Rourke’s theory of bureaucratic power, and organization theory. 

Government Building

Note. This paper has never been published but it contains an idea that would be useful in the political control literature.

Groeneveld, Sandra, Rhys Andrews, Kenneth J. Meier, and Eckhard Schröter. "Representative bureaucracy and public service performance: Where, why and how does representativeness work." In PMRA Public Management Research Conference, vol. 22. Aarhus University, 2016.

After a series of sophisticated studies on the interface between bureaucracy and electoral institutions, Dan Wood, and Dan Wood along with Rick Waterman, concluded that it had been established that electoral institutions can control the bureaucracy, and research was now needed to move to the more interesting questions about what factors facilitate or limit this control. Using a unique data set of over 1,000 public organizations, plus an interrupted time-series assessment of political control that is analogous to those used by Wood, this paper systematically tests several hypotheses about political control of the bureaucracy.  This paper tests a series of such hypotheses from spatial theory, Rourke’s theory of bureaucratic power, and organization theory. 

Experts Panel

Note. Another unpublished paper but frequently cited.

Representative Bureaucracy: A Theoretical and Empirical Exposition, in James Perry, Research in Public Administration Volume II.  San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1993, 1-36.

This paper seeks to provide a stronger theoretical base of support for empirical studies of representative bureaucracy, to integrate the research findings of the past 15 years, and to advance an agenda of future research questions. The paper includes a discussion of race, class, gender, ethnicity, education, religion, and other factors that under the right conditions can influence the decisions made by bureaucrats. Substantial attention is given to the locus of representation, whether it is more important to have representation at upper levels of the bureaucracy or at the implementation or street-level of bureaucracy.

US government building

Note. Published but not easy to get a copy. A good theoretical paper and a precursor to Keiser et al. APSR (2002) and Meier PPMG (2019).

Kenneth J. Meier and Tabitha S.M. Morton. 2015. in Eckhard Schröter, Patrick von Maravic and B. Guy Peters, The Politics of Representative Bureaucracy: Power, Legitimacy, Performance, Cheltenham UK: Edward Elgar, 94-112.

Tue purpose of this chapter is to elucidate the theory of representative bureaucracy to set up a template for how studies could be implemented in a variety of national contexts. The focus will be on the concept “identity”, a term that includes individual characteristics such as race, ethnicity, and gender; characteristics that are difficult for an individual to change in the short run and that are often highly visible.

Washington Monument

Note. Published but hard to find. Theory moving representative bureaucracy to the comparative literature.