Public Administration and some of its Definitions

The management of the affairs of the public by central, state or local governments or statutory bodies is called administration. For example- the administration of post offices, the administration of the supply of electricity by the State Electricity Board, the management of broadcasting by B.B.C. (British Broadcasting Corporation) etc.

Five important definitions of public administration:

(i) Prof. L.D. White observes, “Public Administration consists of all those operations having for their purpose the fulfilment or enforcement of public policy.

(ii) Gladden gives a brief definition of public administration when he says that it is concerned with the administration of the government.

(iii) Harvey Walker observes, “The work which the government does to give effect to a law is called administration”.

(iv) Waldo defines public administration, as “the art and science of management as applied to the affairs of state”.

(v) Prof. Woodraw Wilson defines public administration as “detailed and systematic execution of public law, every particular application of general law is an act of administration”.

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