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Chair of Administrative Science & Modernization

Research Projects

Towards a New Public Management? Administrative Reform between Global Trends and National Traditions

Project Description

The "New Public Management" (NPM) reform movement has given rise to a "global convergence" hypothesis and, in fact, many reports on public sector modernization portray NPM-driven changes as a secular trend and present a one-dimensional picture of national reform trajectories from "old" to "new" public management allowing analysts to label individual countries as "leaders" or "laggards" in the reform movement. Although there has been a great deal of NPM-inspired reform activity in OECD member countries, that activity has been far from uniform. In fact, there is every indication that country-specific reform profiles and trajectories have been developing so as to reflect national and regional styles of administration (the "persisting divergence" thesis). Against this general background, this project analyzes the degree of administrative convergence or persisting divergence of administrative systems in industrialized democracies in North America and Europe, also with an eye on the question whether there is a North American exceptionalism setting American or Canadian reform approaches apart from European models of administrative modernization. In doing so, we start from the assumption that a clear understanding of each country's key political and administrative traditions is necessary. Therefore, the study is designed to set current national reform policies into a historical and cultural perspective as opposed to the often context-free and a-historical treatment of the subject matter.


Project Duration

from 01.01.2004 through 31.12.2006

Project Head

Prof. Dr. Eckhard Schröter

Project Execution

Prof. Dr. Eckhard Schröter, Prof. Dr. Joel D. Aberbach


eigenfinanziertes Forschungsprojekt

Project-related Publications

  • : Digitale Agenda Bodensee | Teilprojekt im IBH Lab KMU Digital, 2018-12-05 00:00
  • Schröter, Eckhard: Europäischer Verwaltungsraum und Reform des öffentlichen Sektors, in: Blanke, Bernhard / Bandemer, Stephan / Nullmeier, Frank / Wever, Göttrik (Hrsg.): Handbuch zur Verwaltungsreform, Wiesbaden, VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, 3 Auflage, 2005, 510 - 519
  • Schröter, Eckhard / Rockman, Bert A.: Rolling Back the State? The Case of Privatization in Germany and the US, in: Eaton, D. (Hrsg.): The End of Sovereignty? A Transatlantic Perspective, Transatlantic Public Policy Series, Münster, Lit Verlag, 2 Auflage, 2005, 129 - 156