POLS 330-2: Bureaucracy and the Policy Process
M/W 3:30-4:45 pm
Office: DuSable 476
Phone: (815) 753-1818
Office hours: Tues: 4:45-6:15 pm
Thurs: 2:00-3:30 pm & by appointment
This class will looks at the role of the public bureaucracy in the formation and implementation of public policy. This will include the interaction of public agencies with other levels and branches of government, as well as the interaction of bureaucracy with nonprofit organizations, interest groups, and the media. Special attention will be paid to the tools bureaucracies use in the call for efficient government. At the conclusion of the class, you will be able to identify how the bureaucracy responds to each of the aforementioned actors and the importance of each in the implementation of American public policy.
Course text: Stillman, Richard
(2004). The American Bureaucracy: The Core of Modern Government,
Supplemental Material: There will be articles that will be available through JSTOR and ArticleFirst as well as select book chapters. For your convenience, this material will be linked on Blackboard.
In addition to the texts, students are required to create accounts on the Blackboard Course Server (http://webcourses.niu.edu) during the first week of class. This site will be utilized for posting on-line readings, important course announcements, student grades, and other course materials.
Calculation of Grades
Your grade in this course will consist of your performance on two exams (a midterm and a final exam), two research papers, and class participation. The following is a breakdown of how the grades will be weighted:
The grading scale is as follows:
360 - 400
25 points each (50 total)
320 - 359
Research Paper 1
280 - 319
Research Paper 2
240 - 279
Attendance: There is a strong positive correlation between class attendance and student performance. I expect you to show up for every class. Being in class affords you the opportunity to ask questions and learn from your fellow students.
Tardiness: I expect all students to get to class on time and remain in class for the duration of the class period. If you are late, you will be marked absent.
Late assignments/make-up exams: I do not accept late work, nor do I offer make-up exams. If you have a situation that requires an exception, you must notify me well in advance and be prepared to produce documentation.
Course communications: Students have an obligation to activate and monitor their NIU email account. This account will be used for out-of-class communication as well as Blackboard.
Cell Phones: No cell phone use during class. This includes not only calls but text messaging, internet browsing, and instant messaging as well. Please turn your cell phones off.
Behavior: I expect professional decorum in the classroom at all times. Do not read the newspaper, talk to your friends or sleep during class. Do not come to class late or leave early. All of these actions are not only rude to your teacher and peers, but are also not acceptable in a college setting.
Academic Dishonesty: The maintenance of academic honesty and integrity is of vital concern to the Department of Political Science and the University community. Any student found guilty of academic dishonesty will face both academic and disciplinary sanctions. It is each student’s responsibility to become familiar with this section of the University's Academic Integrity policy of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences: Advising Handbook, and to follow it.
Disabilities: Under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, NIU is committed to making reasonable accommodations for persons with documented disabilities. NIU’s CAAR’s mission ensures that people with disabilities "are viewed on the basis of ability, not disability" and that their needs will be met in order to ensure an environment of equal opportunity. Students should inform the instructor of any such needs, and have the needs verified through the Center for Access-Ability Resources, Health Services [Fourth Floor: Phone: (815) 753-1303] during the first two weeks of the semester.
Obligations – I expect you to arrive to class on time and prepared. This means to make sure you have completed the readings before class. If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know. I will make myself available to help you outside of class or office hour times if necessary.
Class Papers: There are two 5-7 page research papers assigned for this class. The first paper will be due by February 28, and the second by April 30. As noted above, they will not be accepted if handed in late. The paper topics are discussed in more detail below.
Department of Political Science website: Students are strongly encouraged to visit the political science department’s website for information. This site is up-to-date with information that will assist students in contacting faculty and staff, exploring graduate studies, researching career options, and accessing important details related to undergraduate programs and activities. For important information on the Department of Political Science, please visit: http://polisci.niu.edu/
January 17: Introduction
Review class syllabus
January 22: The American bureaucracy
What is the American Bureaucracy?
Read: Stillman Ch 1, pgs 1-7
Martin, John Bartlow 1975. “The Blast in
*Extra credit due: Certified completion of the Online Tutorial on Academic Integrity, available at: http://www.ai.niu.edu/ai/students/. Worth 5 points.*
January 24: Bureaucratic Myths and Realities
What are the myths of American Bureaucracy and how can they affect citizen’s view of government?
Read: Stillman Ch 1, pgs 7-29
Homework: Due January 29: After reading “The Blast in Centralia
No. 5,” how do you think the people in the study viewed public
administration? How did their views
affect their actions? Specifically write
about two of the following people in the study: Inspector Scanlon, Director of
the Department of Mines and Minerals Medill, Governor Green, District UMW Union
Leader “Spud White”, Centralia Mine Manager Brown, and the
January 29: Politics-Administration Dichotomy
What is the dichotomy, and why does it matter?
Read: Wilson, Woodrow 1887. “The Study of Administration” Political Science Quarterly
The Study of Administration” The American Political Science Review
Public Administration Review, Vol. 47, No. 1, pp. 17-25.
January 31: Public Policy Overview
What is the purpose of public policy?
Read: Ripley, Randall and Grace
Franklin. 1984. Congress, the Bureaucracy, and Public Policy, 3rd ed.
Rourke, Francis. 1984. Bureaucracy, Politics, and Public Policy, 3rd ed. Harper Collins Publishers. Chapter 1: Introduction: Bureaucracies and Policy Making. Available on Blackboard.
February 5: The Rise of the American Bureaucracy
Why was there a need for bureaucracy and how did it come into existence?
Read: Stillman Ch 2, pgs 35-49
February 7: The Rise of the American Bureaucracy, cont.
What are the general characteristics of the rise of American bureaucracy?
Read: Stillman Ch 2, pgs 49-73.
February 12: Forces Shaping the Modern American Bureaucracy
How do the first two levels of inputs on bureaucracy influence bureaucratic institutions?
Read: Stillman Ch 3, pgs 77-90
February 14: Forces Shaping the Modern American Bureaucracy, cont.
How does the third level of inputs on bureaucracy influence bureaucratic institutions?
Read: Stillman Ch 3, pgs 91-107
Cook, Timothy. 1989. Governing with the News: The News Media as a Political Institution.
Ch 7: Beyond the White House, Available on Blackboard.
February 19: Forces Shaping the Modern American Bureaucracy, cont.
How does the fourth level of inputs on bureaucracy influence bureaucratic institutions?
Read: Stillman Ch 3, pgs 107-124
Homework: Due February 26: Going back to the Centralia Case Study, what were the external forces influencing the outcome of the case? What had the greatest impact, what had the least impact? This assignment should be 2 pages double spaced, 12 pt font.
February 21: Modern American Bureaucracy: Tools and Change
How is, or is, government administration adjusting to change?
Francis E. 1991. “American Bureaucracy in a Changing Political Setting”
The Tools of Government.
February 26: Inside the Public Bureaucracy
How can professionally appointed administrators and/or experts affect public policy?
Read: Stillman Ch 4, pgs 129-157.
February 28: Inside the Public Bureaucracy, cont.
How can civil servants affect public policy?
Read: Stillman Ch 4, pgs 157-195.
Lipsky, Michael. 2005. Street-Level Bureaucrats as Policy
Makers. Reprinted in Jay M. Shafritz Karen
Paper 1 due
March 5: Review and questions for the Midterm
March 7: Midterm Exam
March 12: Spring break, no class
March 14: Spring break, no class
March 19: Outputs of the American Bureaucracy
What are the outputs of bureaucratic agencies dependent on?
Read: Stillman Ch 5, pgs 201-223
March 21: Outputs of the American Bureaucracy, cont.
What role do the different actors in the bureaucracy play in producing the desired outputs?
Read: Stillman Ch 5, pgs 223-248
March 26: Professional travel – class canceled
March 28: Communication in Administration
Why is communication important in public administration?
Read: Rosenthal, Uriel. 1997.
“The Relevance of Administrative Communication to Democratic Politics: Communicating in Democracies.” In James L.
Garnett and Alexander Kouzmin (eds) Handbook
of Administrative Communication,
April 2: Feedback
What trends are transforming the goals of modern bureaucracy?
Read: Stillman Ch 6, pgs 255-272
April 4: Feedback
What forces are affecting bureaucratic authority?
Read: Stillman Ch 6, pgs 272-311
April 9: The Future of the American Bureaucracy
What are some of the challenges facing the American bureaucracy?
Read: Kettl, Donald. 2005. The
Next Government of the
April 11: The Future of the American Bureaucracy, cont.
April 16: The Future of the American Bureaucracy, cont.
How do you see the future of public administration in regard to the policy process?
Read: Stillman Ch 7, pgs 316-346.
April 18: The Future of the American Bureaucracy, cont.
Read: Rourke, Francis 1992. “Responsiveness and Neutral Competence in American Bureaucracy” Public Administration Review
April 23: Case Study: Hurricane Katrina
Read: Schneider, Saundra. 2005. Administrative Breakdowns in the Governmental Response to Hurricane Katrina. Public Administration Review, 65(5), p515-518.
Kettl, Donald. 2007. System of Stress: Homeland Security and
American Politics, 2nd ed.
April 25: Case Study: Hurricane Katrina, cont.
Read: Kettl, Donald
2006.Political Storm: The Intergovernmental Puzzle of Hurricane Katrina. In Andrew White and Peter Eisinger (eds) Cities at Risk: Catastrophe, Recovery and
Peter, Edward F. Renwick and Matthew O. Thomas. 2006. Interests, Issue and Actors: The Politics of
Decision Making in Post-Katrina New
April 30: Wrap up the role of the bureaucracy in public policy making
Paper 2 due
May 2: Review for the Final
May 7: Final exam: DU 246 4:00 – 5:50
* I reserve the right to make changes and adjust the schedule as needed.
The main writing assignments for this course are two (2) 5-7 page formal research papers (be sure to follow the standard paper format provided below). In general, late papers will not be accepted (see class policies).
Paper topic 1: How has the modern American bureaucracy, as we study it today, been shaped? What role does the bureaucracy have in public policy? What are some of the forces affecting the bureaucracy?
Paper topic 2: What do the experts see as problems, or tensions, facing governing in the future? Why are these tensions arising? What are the proposed solutions? You have two choices:
1) Focus on one scholar and the different problems they address as well as solutions. Include in this critiques or comparisons from other experts in the field as well as relating some of the historical aspects of the problems posed; or
2) Cover a broad range of key problem(s) addressed by different scholars and compare and contrast their solutions. Again, you should include some of the historical aspects of the problems posed.
Your research papers should follow these guidelines:
Grading Criteria for Research Papers
A consistent grading schema will be used, with the points available for the various assignments apportioned among a number of criteria. These will include the following (and are further elaborated below):
§ Rule of thumb #1: if your list of works cited includes only books, only journals, or (especially) only internet sites, the research was neither systematic nor comprehensive.
STATEMENT ON PLAGIARISM
Students faced with the task of writing a paper are sometimes tempted to borrow facts, ideas, or phrases from other writers as an aid to their own expressions. While it is possible to do this in an acceptable manner, the beginning writer in particular should be aware of the dangers of straying into the area of plagiarism. PLAGIARISM, SIMPLY DEFINED, IS TAKING SOMEONE ELSE'S WORDS OR IDEAS AND REPRESENTING THEM AS BEING YOUR OWN. It is specifically prohibited by University regulations, which state:
Good academic work must be based on honesty. The attempt of any student to present as his or her own work that which he or she has not produced is regarded by the faculty and administration as a serious offense. Students are considered to have cheated if they copy the work of another during an examination or turn in a paper or an assignment written, in whole or in part, by someone else. Students are guilty of plagiarism, intentional or not, if they copy material from books, magazines, or other sources without identifying and acknowledging those sources or if they paraphrase ideas from such sources without acknowledging them. Students guilty of, or assisting others in, either cheating or plagiarism on an assignment, quiz, or examination may receive a grade of F for the course involved and may be suspended or dismissed from the university. (Undergraduate Catalog, p. 47)
The essence of plagiarism is theft and misrepresentation. One who plagiarizes is attempting to get credit, in the form of a grade, for someone else's work; in effect, he or she is doing the same sort of thing as copying another person's answers on an exam. Thus guilt or innocence in plagiarism cases is not a matter of how much material was stolen or what the motives of the thief were. Any material which is taken from another writer and presented as if it were the student's own original work comes under the prohibition.
Specifically, the following are examples of plagiarism:
1. A paper or assignment actually written in whole or part by another.
2. A paper or assignment copied word-for-word or with only minor changes from a book, magazine, or other source.
3. A paper copied in part from one or more sources, without proper identification and acknowledgment of the sources.
4. A paper which is merely a paraphrase of one or more sources, using ideas and/or logic without credit, even though the actual words may be changed.
5. A paper which quotes, summarizes or paraphrases, or cuts and pastes words, phrases or images from an Internet source without identification and the address of the Web site.
Notice numbers 2, 4, and 5. Direct quotation is not the only kind of plagiarism. Taking someone else's ideas, judgments or logic, even if you put them in your own words, is as unacceptable as stealing the words.
This does not mean that outside sources may never be used. Some subjects and some assignments require research and the quotation of other writers' work. But all such use of outside materials must be properly identified, through quotation marks, internal citations, endnotes, and/or other accepted ways of acknowledging such borrowings. It is not the use of an outside source that is wrong; it is the implicit claim that any material obtained in that manner is in fact original.
Nor does this mean that every single fact that you learn from some outside source must be documented. Material which is general knowledge or generally available from many sources (such as dictionary definitions, familiar historical facts, and the like) need not be identified; a reader assumes that you got the information somewhere. In most courses, facts drawn from the textbook in that course (but not the author's judgments or conclusions) are fair game. But it is always better to err in the direction of over-acknowledgment: when in doubt, identify your source. Better yet, unless the assignment requires research, rely on your own knowledge, ideas and words.