Journal of Public Administration - Volume 48, Issue 3, 2013
Volumes & issues
Volume 48, Issue 3, 2013
Source: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 381 –389 (2013)More Less
This editorial essay is based partly on the interview we had with the editor of the Journal of Public Administration, which this September edition marks a year of his editorship. The purpose of the interview was to understand his editorship vision, especially as it relates to what he consistently refers to in his writings as the principal unanswered question of the discipline. What exactly does this question mean? How is the public administration scholarship responding to it? What is the state of the discourse in the pages of the Journal in relation to the question, and its implications on the epistemological basis of the discipline? We term this exercise editing the editor. Connected to the theme of this editorial essay is the notion of intersection of parallels we use to characterise South Africa-United States dialogue, which part of its proceedings are recorded in this edition.
Author Lindiwe SisuluSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 390 –396 (2013)More Less
Chairperson of the Public Service Commission, Public Service Commissioners, Honourable Speaker of the House of Assembly, Honourable Chairpersons of Portfolio Committees, Honourable Members of Parliament, Directors-General and Senior Public Service Managers, Esteemed Guests, I am delighted to join you here today to present the keynote address on the occasion of the Centenary Celebrations of the Public Service Commission. At the outset, we need to ask ourselves precisely what it is that we are celebrating. The Public Service and Pensions Act of 1912 established the Public Service Commission in August 1912. That institution, however, bears scant resemblance to the Public Service Commission established through Chapter 10 of our democratic Constitution in 1996.
Author Kgosientso RamokgopaSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 397 –402 (2013)More Less
It is always important to engage in a discussion on a subject as important as the political economy of development, strategy and sustainable development. This is because the future of prosperity depends on how we handle this important matter as we respond to the exigencies of the contemporary reality. The question of national income and distribution has always been an important aspect of humanity, which, in 1776, Adam Smith cogently packaged into a book, The Wealth of Nations. The impact of this publication in disciplining the contemporary discourse on the political economy is profound, from which scholars and intellectuals of different persuasions draw important insights. As some may ask, why do I even make reference to an ideological scholar or intellectual? Isn't that a scholar or an intellectual should not be of a particular ideological orientation? This question is important. It affords us an opportunity to, at the outset, clarify it as it is often loosely asked with misconceptions that a scholar or an intellectual is an "absolutely isolated individual" (Horkheimer, 1947:137).
The answer to the question about the ideological orientation of a scholar or an intellectual, as asked above, is a question: Is there anything wrong with ideology? In his article on Discourse on the concept of a developmental state in South Africa, Maserumule (2012:183) argues that "ideology can also be of epistemological value", hence Marxism and Leninism, for example, evolved into a body of political theory used as analytical frameworks to make sense of the political economy of the contemporary realities. So, as Horkheimer, (1947) put it in his book, Eclipse of reason, the concept of an "absolutely isolated individual [is an] illusion". Our take on the issue of the dialogue is inevitably disciplined by the context of our ideological disposition, not as ideologues, but as scholars and intellectuals committed to multiple truths. I just thought it is important to make this point to contextualise the ideational embeddeness of this contribution, which seeks to preface the SA-US dialogue on such an important issue as the political economy of public policy. Our own truth on this aspect would be enriched by the truth of our visitors from the US.
This contribution is based on the address I delivered, welcoming the US delegation, in my capacity as the Executive Mayor of the City of Tshwane. The address was subsequently developed into a scholarly contribution to the political economy discourse on public policy. The delegation came to South Africa to participate in a roundtable discussion with eminent South African scholars and intellectuals - an event co-hosted by the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) and Mapungubwe Institute for Strategic Reflection (MISTRA). This contribution starts by clarifying the conceptual aspects that undergird the theme of the dialogue. This is followed by a reflective analysis on the political economy and policy development, where the nexus between the two is enunciated. For contextual reasons, the discussion draws insights from Adam Smith and Karl Marx, but also, more importantly, take into consideration the contributions of other scholars to the discourse on political economy such as Amartya Sen. This takes the discourse to the political economy of public policy development in the new South Africa. Towards the end conclusions are made, with important questions asked, for consideration in future dialogue on this important aspect.
Author David M. MelloSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 403 –413 (2013)More Less
South Africa has become a major role player internationally in the past two decades. Apart from the role the country has played in politics on the African continent, the country has made significant inroads into being one of the major role players in education and development. In its quest to become a major role player, South Africa and its 23 Universities have to influence and are influenced by other countries. The exchange of students and academics is central to the internationalisation of education globally. This article attempts to answer three pertinent questions. The first question is what does internationalisation of higher education entail? The second question is why internationalisation? The third question is what challenges may arise from internationalisation of education?
Author Maria P. AristiguetaSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 414 –428 (2013)More Less
This article provides a descriptive review of activities occurring at universities and professional organisations in the United States of America to assist students and faculty in the international learning that must occur in a globalised world. Findings include a variety of activities that are on-going; faculties are teaching courses abroad, helping develop curricula and organising/attending conferences internationally. Tuition and credit exchanges have been made available for students and studying abroad. Bilateral agreements have been found to be helpful in the execution of international activities. Programs like Fulbright and Erasmus help to facilitate and fund the exchanges. Professional associations are facilitating and providing opportunities for universities to get involved internationally. Universities in the United States (US) are opening campuses abroad. Faculty that does not engage on international activities claim that it is not in their academic program's mission or funds are lacking to support it. Those that participate, tend to take personal initiative to do so, and are encouraged by their organisation's mission, and see linkages between their international experience and research agenda. The article ends with prospectus for internationalising public affairs programs and strategies to ensure success of the global village.
Author Daniel RichSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 429 –454 (2013)More Less
This article examines the changing global political economy of higher education, the impacts and implications for universities and government policies, and the strategies that may address these changing conditions. The analysis considers the pursuit of higher education as a priority for public investment, using the U.S. experience as an illustration. Two models for the 21st century University are evaluated: the Entrepreneurial University and the Engaged University. The analysis projects changes that will dramatically reshape the academic organisation of universities as well as the global landscape of higher education in the decades ahead. Those in public administration and related fields have an important role to play in developing a new vision of the public responsibilities of the 21st century universities.
A global transformation is underway in higher education. Dramatic shifts are taking place in the distribution of higher education resources that are changing what, where, how, by whom, and to whom higher education services are provided and funded. The emerging higher education environment is more turbulent and uncertain, frequently more threatening, and assuredly more competitive than only a few decades ago. The transformation is at an early stage and will intensify in strength and complexity over succeeding decades, driven by new technology, shifting educational costs, the reshaping of core domains of scholarship, and the academic reorganisation of universities. Cutting across these forces are new patterns of supply and demand and major changes in both public and private investments.
Author Sibusiso Vil-NkomoSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 455 –465 (2013)More Less
This article uses triangulation to understand the development of an effective and efficient public service in South Africa. The creation of democracy in South Africa is not a sufficient condition for development as demonstrated by the challenges the country faces, twenty years after the political settlement. The public service of this country must be grounded in an understanding of the applied political economy of development and fully embrace that this country is a democratic developmental state. The article explores the evolvement in thinking from development economics to structural economics and eventually to the importance of applied political economy and how it can inform the advancement of service delivery as expected from public servants. The pre-conditions for the success of the South African public service are discussed.
Author Daniel PlaatjiesSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 466 –476 (2013)More Less
The delivery system of public goods and services in the different spheres of government lacks uniformity, standardisation and integration. This lack has contributed to a call for harmonisation of public administration management systems, conditions of services and the universal application of norms and standards across the three spheres of government and organs of state. The Public Administration Management Bill introduced in Parliament is the legislative stepping stone towards putting together uniformed and standardised public administration system in place. The potential of such a uniform system is a minimalist, though progressive step towards a single public service system. This article looks at the strategic, but legislative interventions and instruments introduced by the Public Administration Management Bill (2013) in the context of an emerging single public service.
Author Mashupye Herbert MaserumuleSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 477 –497 (2013)More Less
Would the question about the theory of public administration ever be settled? It is now more than a century that a search for the theory of public administration has been continuing with no settlement in sight. Does this presuppose that the search for such theory is an exercise in futility? Where did the discourse in the field get it so wrong that it failed to evolve into a consensus on the universally-acceptable theory of public administration? This article examines these questions, which undergird the historiography of the discipline. They are not new. However, the fact that they remain unanswered makes their continued consideration necessary. In this article the discourse on the theory of public administration is deconstructed. Its thesis is that much of the discourse on the theory of public administration is embedded in Wilsonian scholarship and the New Public Management (NPM) paradigm, which their epistemological character is barren for any theorisation undertaking to flourish. Situated within Wilsonian scholarship and the NPM paradigm, scholarly efforts to construct a theory of public administration are destined to naught. This conclusion is based on the results of a critical review of the existing body of literature on the theoretical questions of the discipline, with a particular bias to Woodrow Wilson's work and the body of literature on the NPM. This is because Wilson's work "has pervaded... public administrative thought" to the point of assuming the status of a dominant paradigm during the early stages of the evolution of the discipline (Rosenbloom, 1993: 504).
The NPM achieved the same destiny in the 1980s and 1990s. The Wilsonian scholarship and NPM failed to spawn a universally-acceptable theory of public administration because of the binary logic of the structure of their discourses, which evolved on the basis of "a dream of the abolition of politics" (Torgerson, 1986: 34). Alongside the founding perspectives of the discipline as ingrained in the Hamiltonian scholarship, the contributions critiquing and criticising the Wilsonian and NPM scholarship are analysed. The results of this analysis are used to draw important insights in reconstructing the discourse on the theory of public administration. This article is therefore not about constructing a theory of public administration. Its focus is on deconstructing and deconstructing the discourse on the theory of the discipline. It is a discourse analysis. Its purpose is to show the way in which the Wilsonian and NPM paradigms constructed the versions of their realities in terms of the epistemological basis of the discipline, and to "uncover [their] ideological assumptions" concealed in their "persuasive rhetoric" (Niewenhuis, 2012:102, 113). The logic that frames the contention of this article is that a theoretical question could only be answered if the discourse that should evolve into its settlement is structured in a coherent and systematic way.
Sovereignty and scholarship : can scholarship be sovereign? A case for (South) African public administrationSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 498 –513 (2013)More Less
Scholarship in the developing world, with the public administration scholarship as the proximate abstraction of what maybe general, is not simply different from its predecessors in the developed world. It is more decadent. It generates an almost natural and implicit demand for it to take a stance, generally socio-political, that affects its style in such a way that scholarship itself comes to symbolise a particular paradigmatic orientation that alters its originative historical character. As a consequence, scholarship in developing world ends up on a quicksand type intellectual base that sunk deeper into its 'imposed inadequacy' whilst at the same time making its sovereignty vulnerable. Its reliance on conceptual frameworks that are not original and congruent to the contextual realities of the public administration milieu they purport to be instructing, discourage the high quality socio-political eclectic of the study of the discipline. The deeply bred traditions of grounded scholarship that is organic as pioneered by the emerging episteme advocated by a new breed of scholars calls for an interrogation of the question: can scholarship be sovereign? This article explores this question.
The ideology of thought - a review of selected South African publications in public administration and managementAuthor Barry HanyaneSource: Journal of Public Administration 48, pp 514 –525 (2013)More Less
Selected articles published in scientific journals in the discipline of Public Administration and Management in South Africa appear to have not escaped the influence of ideological thinking. The pre-apartheid writings reflected the dominant thinking of scholars of that era, which were less protest-driven bordering on encouraging the maintenance of the apartheid ideology. The post-apartheid writings reflect the emergence of a confrontational thinking. Voices of deconstruction of what constitute public administration emerged with a sense of vigour and purpose. This article argues that ideology influences the way authors and scholars think and write about various phenomena in the field of public administration. In recent times the ideologies such as romanticism, liberalism and radicalism as primary ideologies are found in the discourse in the discipline. Language, symbols and practical articulation through speeches by public administration scholars suggest a dominant way of thinking within a particular context and time.