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Spring 2014 - 63405 - PA384C - Public Management

Instructor(s): Lynn, Laurence E.
Unique Number: 63405
Day & Time: W 2:00 pm -5:00 pm
Room: SRH 3.214
Waitlist Information:For LBJ Students: UT Waitlist Information
Course Overview

This course provides substantive instruction in administrative policymaking and implementation. It is usually taken during the first year. Students are introduced to the role and method of administration in meeting policy expectations, resolving issues, responding to new requirements, and evaluating performance. The course covers the following topics: organization structure and bureaucracy, management issues and processes, managerial psychology, managing diversity, leadership, strategic planning, interorganizational relations, administrative law, human resource management, labor relations, personnel administration, performance measurement, program evaluation, information management, and ethics of public service. Each section of the course uses a different aspect of public administration or public management to emphasize these topics. The objectives of the course are achieved by using case studies, simulation exercises, class visitors, and practical exercises which complement the assigned readings and class discussions.

Section Description

The purposes of this course are (1) to show how and why public management and public managers make a significant contribution to the performance of governments at all levels, and (2) to assist you to develop the critical analytical skills which will enhance their effectiveness in public service positions working for or advising managers and as managers themselves. 

A common misconception in public affairs education is that policy analysis requires “hard” skills of rigorous analysis and that public management requires “soft” skills of interpersonal effectiveness.  This course will demonstrate why analytical thinking is every bit as critical to good management as to good policy analysis by showing “concepts in action” in numerous real-world cases and examples.

The course will employ a three-dimensional approach to public management.  The argument is that effective public management is a resultant of an appropriate balance of (1) structures of authority and processes of deliberation and decision making; (2) organizational cultures that facilitate rather than impede policy achievement; and (3) managerial craftsmanship, that is, individuals who are able to use both structures and cultures as well as their own personalities and abilities to maximum beneficial effect.

Materials for the course include a textbook, Public Management: A Three-Dimensional Approach, by Carolyn J. Hill and Laurence E. Lynn, Jr.; supplementary readings; accounts of “public management in the news” at local, state, and federal levels; and other accounts and analyses as appropriate.


  Students are expected to complete the following written assignments:


•           12 weekly questions/comments on readings - you are expected to circulate questions/comments on the readings by the night before each scheduled class.  Please circulate these to your classmates using the class listserv e-mail address.

•           5 case analyses (3-5 double-spaced pages each—1 inch margins, 12 pt. font, pages numbered), due at the beginning of class on the assignment due dates; the topics, most of which are taken from the “Analysis and  Argument: Test Your Understanding” sections at the end of each chapter in the course text, are listed at the end of the syllabus.  Two of these, marked with an asterisk (*) are required of all students: these are due on February 1 and April 18.

•           Final examination—this is a take-home examination and is due on the last day of class (see below for further details).