We awarded the Charles H. Levine Memorial Book Prize 2018!

The Charles H. Levine Memorial Book Prize 2018 goes to "Electing Peace. From Civil Conflict to Political Participation" by Aila M. Matanock - Congratulations!

The Award Committee has selected “Electing Peace. From Civil Conflict to Political Participation” by Aila M. Matanock as the 2018 recipient of the Levine Award. The book studies settlements to civil conflicts and more particularly electoral participation provisions. Specifically it asks: what are the causes and consequences of clauses enabling the combatant side to participate as political parties in post-conflict elections? With almost every second election on the globe taking place in the shadow of violent conflict and settlements tending to fail, giving way to additional fighting, this is a highly relevant question. On the basis of a strong theoretical argument and an impressive and stringently comparative research design, the book shows electoral participation provisions are associated with an 80% increase in the chance that peace will endure.

Matanock provides a theoretically compelling and analytically sharp argument of how establishing former rebel groups as political parties engages international actors to monitor and incentivise compliance which in turn produce more enduring peace. In doing so, she not only masterly interweaves election studies with comparative politics, international relations, public policy and governance insights in a bargaining model of how external actors change the cost calculation of noncompliance by former combatant groups. She also confronts the dominant view that post-conflict elections on the whole do not cater to durable peace with a more nuanced and optimistic explanation. Beyond the theoretical advances made, this book has enormously practical implications for policy makers about how to construct post conflict settlement agreements.

Clarity of the argument is met by an excellent research strategy and design. Statistical evidence on the basis of newly collected cross-national data on 122 peace agreements and 388 civil conflicts is combined with in depth cases studies to understand the underlying mechanisms. Within case comparison over time is matched by analysis of typical cases in Central America and outlier cases across the globe. The material is innovative as well as balanced, including interviews with representatives of all sides of the conflicts (including former combatant leaders) – and compiled into a fasinating read for both scholars and practitioners.

This is an highly important, theoretically stong, truly comparative and masterfully executed book which the award committee is pleased to cite for this year’s Levine Prize.

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Each year, the International Political Science Association’s Research Committee on the Structure of Governance sponsors the Levine Prize. It is named in honour of Charles H. Levine, who was a distinguished member of the Research Committee and served on the editorial board of its official journal, Governance. The prize is awarded on the recommendation of a distinguished committee. This year’s committee was composed of Professors Claire A. Dunlop (University of Exeter, UK), Miriam Hartlapp (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany) and Linda White (University of Toronto, Canada).

SOG Potsdam Meeting 2018

18.01.2018

Theme "Bureaucracy in Divided Times" | University of Potsdam, Chair for German Politics and Government, 20-21 June 2018

IPSA World Congress - Brisbane 2018

SOG will organize 9 panels during the IPSA World Congress in Brisbane (21-26 July 2018). Check out the "Events" page to see what is on the programme!

IPSA World Congress - Brisbane 2018

SOG will organize 9 panels during the IPSA World Congress in Brisbane (21-26 July 2018).

At this year’s IPSA World Congress, SOG will organise and host 9 panels, the themes address key issues of contemporary research and practice in the study of structure and organisation of governments. They include panels on civil service systems and on policy advisers, on executive politics and collaboration, on public management reforms, and on regulatory governance.

We wish all participants an intriguing conference - thanks again to the many panel organisers, paper presenters and discussants!

Please do check the final programme at the IPSA website (especially time and venue of each panel). The SOG panels are:

  1. “Comparative Civil Service Systems and Service Delivery: Size, Quality and Beyond” (chairs: Prof. Frits van der Meer & Prof. Caspar F. Van Den Berg)
  2. “Political staff at the borders of the political and administrative world” (chairs: Prof. Anne Tiernan & Dr. Maria Maley)
  3. “Executive Politics and Governance” (chair: Prof. Brian Head)
  4. “Organizing for Collaborative Government: Coordination, Capacity and Legitimacy” (chair: Prof. Tom Christensen & Prof. Per Lægreid)
  5. “Public Management Reform Models: Flawed or the Future?” (chairs: Prof. John Halligan & Prof. Robert Gregory)
  6. “Regulation and Development” (chairs: Prof. Martin Lodge & Prof. Philippe Bezes)
  7. “The Politics of Regulation in the 21st Century” (chair: Prof. Martin Lodge)
  8. “Research Agenda for Public Policy (chair: Prof. B. Guy Peters)

Levine Book Prize 2018 - Call for Nominations and Committee Composition

About the Levine Prize

Charles H. Levine was an outstanding scholar in the fields of public policy and administration. He played a major role in the creation and early life of both this journal and its sponsor, the Structure and Organization of Government Research Committee of the International Political Science Association (SOG). After his untimely death in 1988, the Editorial Board of Governance and the Executive Committee of SOG established an annual book prize in his memory.

Each year, the International Political Science Association’s Research Committee on the Structure and Organization of Government (SOG), sponsor of the journal Governance, awards the Levine Prize.

The Prize is awarded to a book that makes a contribution of considerable theoretical or practical significance in the field of public policy and administration, takes an explicitly comparative perspective, and is written in an accessible style. It is named in honor of Charles H. Levine, who was an accomplished member of the Research Committee and served on the editorial board of Governance. The prize is awarded on the recommendation of a distinguished committee.

Call for nominations: 2018 Levine Prize

The book selected should meet the following criteria:

1. It makes a contribution of considerable theoretical or practical significance in the field of public policy and administration.

2. It takes an explicitly comparative perspective or produces findings the implications of which are highly significant for comparative research.

3. It is written in an accessible style and form so that it is of value both to scholars and practitioners.

The Levine Prize will be awarded to the book published in 2017 that best meets these criteria.
Nominations should be made by 15 March 2018 and sent to the committee.
Please send a copy of the book to all three members of the committee.

The winner will be announced in the October 2018 issue of Governance, and in the SOG Newsletter.

This year’s committee includes:

Professor Claire A. Dunlop

Department of Politics
University of Exeter

Amory Building
Rennes Drive,
Exeter

EX4 4RJ, Devon,
UK

c.a.dunlop@exeter.ac.uk

Professor Linda White

Department of Political Science
University of Toronto

14 Queen’s Park Cres. West

Toronto, ON M5S 3K9
Canada

lwhite@chass.utoronto.ca

Professor Miriam Hartlapp

Department of Political Science
Free University Berlin

Ihnestraße 22

14195 Berlin Germany

miriam.hartlapp@fu-berlin.de

Joel Aberbach and Per Lægreid receive Kloeti Award 2016/2017

At the January meeting of the IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government in Gothenburg, Joel Aberbach of Boston University and Per Lægreid of University of Bergen received the Ulrich Kloeti Award for Distinguished Contributions to the Study of Public Policy, Administration and Institutions. The award is presented annual to scholars who have made exceptional contributions to research in the field throughout their career. The Structure and Organization of Government Research Committee is the academic sponsor of Governance. Aberbach and Lægreid are both former management committee members of SOG.

University of Gothenburg hosts successful SOG Annual Meeting 2017

The IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government held its annual conference, hosted by the University of Gothenburg, on June 07-08. The theme was: “Public Management and Institutional Quality”. The conference addressed a key topic in comparative research of democratic governance and public management and administration. More than 40 participants contributed to the meeting, presenting over 25 academic papers. The core themes were management reforms and their effects on service delivery, audit and transparency in the public sector, partisan politics and administrative reforms, and New Public Management (NPM) and bureaucratic capacity, human resources, administrative traditions as well as public-private partnerships.

This year, the key note was given by one of the most highly acclaimed international public administration and management scholars – Christopher Hood, Gladstone Professor of Government Emeritus and Emeritus Fellow of All Souls College Oxford.

The local organising committee included Monika Bauhr, Rasmus Broms, Carl Dahlström, Marina Nistotskaya and Victor Lapuente.

The Oxford Handbook of Classics in Public Policy and Administration

This Handbook brings together a collection of leading international authors to reflect on the influence of central contributions, or classics, that have shaped the development of the field of public policy and administration.

The Handbook reflects on a wide range of key contributions to the field, selected on the basis of their international and wider disciplinary impact. Focusing on classics that contributed significantly to the field over the second half of the 20th century, it offers insights into works that have explored aspects of the policy process, of particular features of bureaucracy, and of administrative and policy reforms.

Each classic is discussed by a leading international scholars. They offer unique insights into the ways in which individual classics have been received in scholarly debates and disciplines, how classics have shaped evolving research agendas, and how the individual classics continue to shape contemporary scholarly debates. In doing so, this volume offers a novel approach towards considering the various central contributions to the field.

The Handbook offers students of public policy and administration state-of-the-art insights into the enduring impact of key contributions to the field.

More information

New book: The Problem-solving Capacity of the Modern State

Martin Lodge, Kai Wegrich

The Problem-solving Capacity of the Modern State: Governance Challenges and Administrative Capacities

The early 21st century has presented considerable challenges to the problem-solving capacity of the contemporary state in the industrialised world. Among the many uncertainties, anxieties and tensions, it is, however, the cumulative challenge of fiscal austerity, demographic developments, and climate change that presents the key test for contemporary states. Debates abound regarding the state’s ability to address these and other problems given increasingly dispersed forms of governing and institutional vulnerabilities created by politico-administrative and economic decision-making structures. This volume advances these debates, first, by moving towards a cross-sectoral perspective that takes into account the cumulative nature of the contemporary challenge to governance focusing on the key governance areas of infrastructure, sustainability, social welfare, and social integration; second, by considering innovations that have sought to add problem-solving capacity; and third, by exploring the kind of administrative capacities (delivery, regulatory, coordination, and analytical) required to encourage and sustain innovative problem-solving. This edition introduces a framework for understanding the four administrative capacities that are central to any attempt at problem-solving and how they enable the policy instruments of the state to have their intended effect. It also features chapters that focus on the way in which these capacities have become stretched and how they have been adjusted, given the changing conditions; the way in which different states have addressed particular governance challenges, with particular attention paid to innovation at the level of policy instrument and the required administrative capacities; and, finally, types of governance capacities that lie outside the boundaries of the state.

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The Ashgate Research Companion to New Public Management

Tom Christensen, Per Lægreid

A comprehensive, up-to-the-moment review of the New Public Management movement, the driving forces behind its reform and its various trajectories and special features. The Companion offers a refreshing analysis of key issues, and is essential reading for students, and anyone with an interest in modern administrative reform.

Edited by Tom Christensen, University of Oslo, Norway and Per Lægreid, University of Bergen, Norway

Hardback, 522 pages, includes 9 figures and 17 tables
Published: January 2011
ISBN: 978-0-7546-7806-9

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New book by SOG author: Organizing for Coordination

Per Laegreid

SOG member Per Laegreid is one of the editors of Organizing for Coordination in the Public Sector, just published by Palgrave Macmillan.

SOG member Per Laegreid is one of the editors of Organizing for Coordination in the Public Sector, just published by Palgrave Macmillan. “This important collection is comprised of 20 European case studies; it offers valuable insights into public sector coordination and points to important lessons for devising and implementing new coordination instruments.”

Details about the book

The Oxford Handbook of Regulation

Robert Baldwin, Martin Cave, and Martin Lodge

'State of the art' interdisciplinary study of regulation in an international context
Each chapter provides a broad overview of key current issues and perspectives from a leading expert
Particular focus on the issues of the application of specific regulatory approaches in different contexts

Regulation is often thought of as an activity that restricts behaviour and prevents the occurrence of certain undesirable activities, but the influence of regulation can also be enabling or facilitative, as when a market could potentially be chaotic if uncontrolled. This Handbook provides a clear and authoritative discussion of the major trends and issues in regulation over the last thirty years, together with an outline of prospective developments. It brings together contributions from leading scholars from a range of disciplines and countries.

Ideas and Politics in Social Science Research

Daniel Béland and Robert Henry Cox

Writing about ideas, John Maynard Keynes noted that they are "more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else." One would expect, therefore, that political science--a discipline that focuses specifically on the nature of power--would have a healthy respect for the role of ideas.

Writing about ideas, John Maynard Keynes noted that they are “more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else.” One would expect, therefore, that political science—a discipline that focuses specifically on the nature of power—would have a healthy respect for the role of ideas. However, for a variety of reasons—not least of which is the influence of rational choice theory, which presumes that individuals are self-maximizing rational actors—this is not the case, and the literature on the topic is fairly thin. As the stellar cast of contributors to this volume show, ideas are in fact powerful shapers of political and social life.

In Ideas and Politics in Social Science Research , Daniel Béland and Robert Henry Cox have gathered leading scholars from a variety of subdisciplines in political science and sociology to provide a general overview of the theoretical, empirical, and methodological issues raised by social science research on ideas and politics. Throughout, they hone in on three central questions. What is the theoretical basis for studying ideas in politics? What are the best methods? What sort of empirical puzzles can be solved by examining ideas and related phenomena such as discourse, policy paradigms, and framing processes? In sum, this is a state-of-the-art academic work on both the role of ideas in politics and the analytical utility that derives from studying them.

Organization Theory and the Public Sector

Tom Christensen, Per Lægreid, Paul G. Roness and Kjell Arne Røvik

Instrument, culture and myth

Organization Theory and the Public SectorPublic sector organizations are fundamentally different to their private sector counterparts. They are multi-functional, follow a political leadership, and the majority do not operate in an external market. In an era of rapid reform, reorganization and modernization of the public sector, this book offers a timely and illuminating introduction to the public sector organization that recognizes its unique values, interests, knowledge and power-base.

Instrument, culture and myth

Organization Theory and the Public SectorPublic sector organizations are fundamentally different to their private sector counterparts. They are multi-functional, follow a political leadership, and the majority do not operate in an external market. In an era of rapid reform, reorganization and modernization of the public sector, this book offers a timely and illuminating introduction to the public sector organization that recognizes its unique values, interests, knowledge and power-base.

Drawing on both instrumental and institutional perspectives within organization theory, as well as democratic theory and empirical studies of decision-making, the book addresses five central aspects of the public sector organization:
The book challenges conventional economic analysis of the public sector, arguing instead for a democratic-political approach and a new, prescriptive organization theory. A rich resource of both theory and practice, Organization Theory for the Public Sector: Instrument, Culture and Myth is essential reading for anybody studying the public sector.

  • goals and values
  • leadership and steering
  • reform and change
  • effects and implications
  • understanding and design.
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The Oxford Handbook of Business and Government

Edited by David Coen, Professor of Public Policy, University College London, Wyn Grant, Professor of Politics, University of Warwick, and Graham Wilson, Professor of Political Science, Boston University

Edited by David Coen, Professor of Public Policy, University College London, Wyn Grant, Professor of Politics, University of Warwick, and Graham Wilson, Professor of Political Science, Boston University

download

Transcending New Public Management

Tom Christensen and Per Lægreid

The Transformation of Public Sector Reforms

Following on from the success of the editors’ previous book, New Public Management: The Transformation of Ideas and Practice, which examined the public reform process up to the end of the last decade, this new volume draws on the previous knowledge both theoretically and empirically. It examines and debates the post-new public management reform development in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Australia and New Zealand.

The Transformation of Public Sector Reforms

Following on from the success of the editors’ previous book, New Public Management: The Transformation of Ideas and Practice, which examined the public reform process up to the end of the last decade, this new volume draws on the previous knowledge both theoretically and empirically. It examines and debates the post-new public management reform development in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Australia and New Zealand.

The ideal follow-up to the previous volume, this book includes many of the same contributors in addition to some fresh voices, and is a must for anyone looking for an integrated framework of analysis. Comprehensive and analytical, it is an important contribution to the study of public administration and particularly to the reform of public management.

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Autonomy and Regulation

Tom Christensen and Per Lægreid, eds

This book focuses on regulatory reforms and the autonomization and agencification of public sector organizations across Europe, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. The central argument of the book is that regulation and agencification occur and perform in tandem. Comparative analysis on the processes, effects and implications of regulatory reform and the establishment of semi-independent agencies are undertaken, and the practice of trade-offs between political control and agency autonomy is explored...

Tom Christensen and Per Lægreid, eds.

Autonomy and Regulation. Coping with Agencies in the Modern State.
Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.

This book focuses on regulatory reforms and the autonomization and agencification of public sector organizations across Europe, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. The central argument of the book is that regulation and agencification occur and perform in tandem. Comparative analysis on the processes, effects and implications of regulatory reform and the establishment of semi-independent agencies are undertaken, and the practice of trade-offs between political control and agency autonomy is explored. The contributors also discuss the challenges of fragmentation, coordination, ‘joined-up’ government and other government initiatives in the aftermath of the New Public Management movement and its focus on agencification. Finally, the complexity of deregulation/re-regulation, new emergent forms of regulation, control and auditing as well as reassertion of the centre are examined.

The book is based on the best papers form the conference “Autonomization of the state: From integrated administrative models to single purpose organizations” at Stanford University in April 2006, sponsored by the IPSA research Committe 27 Structure and Organization og Government and the Scandinavian Concortium of Organizational Research (SCANCOR) .

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SOG Gothenburg Meeting 2017

11.06.2017

Theme "Public Management and Institutional Quality", Quality of Government Institute at the University of Gothenburg, 07-08 June 2017.

The IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government held its annual conference, hosted by the University of Gothenburg, on June 07-08. The theme was: “Public Management and Institutional Quality”. The conference addressed a key topic in comparative research of democratic governance and public management and administration. More than 40 participants contributed to the meeting, presenting over 25 academic papers. The core themes were management reforms and their effects on service delivery, audit and transparency in the public sector, partisan politics and administrative reforms, and New Public Management (NPM) and bureaucratic capacity, human resources, administrative traditions as well as public-private partnerships.

This year, the key note was given by one of the most highly acclaimed international public administration and management scholars – Christopher Hood, Gladstone Professor of Government Emeritus and Emeritus Fellow of All Souls College Oxford.

The local organising committee included Monika Bauhr, Rasmus Broms, Carl Dahlström, Marina Nistotskaya and Victor Lapuente.

IPSA World Congress - Poznan 2016

24.07.2016

SOG organized 12 panels at the IPSA World Congress in Poznan (24-28 July 2016). Moreover, we held our annual business meeting with updates on the network and the journal Governance.

SOG organized 12 panels at the IPSA World Congress in Poznan (24-28 July 2016). Moreover, we held our annual business meeting with updates on the network and the journal Governance.

The conference was a huge success with plenty of intriguing and inspiring presentations and discussions - also thanks to the very many panel organisers, paper presenters and discussants and the active panel audience!

The SOG panels included:

  1. “Representative Bureaucracy in Comparative Perspective: Where and How Does it Work?” (chair: Prof. Eckhard Schröter)
  2. Public administration and the digital turn” (chair: Prof. Julia Fleischer)
  3. “Regulation in Crisis? Governance, governability and the contemporary state” (chairs: Dr. Eva Heims & Prof. Martin Lodge)
  4. “Output democracy? Bureaucracy as locus for public participation” (chair: Prof. Jacob Aars)
  5. “Organizing for societal security and crisis management: Governance capacity and legitimacy” (chair: Prof. Per Lægreid)
  6. “Vertical and Horizontal Administrative Interplay in the EU – Convergence, yes or no?” (chairs: Prof. Eva Heidbreder & Dr. Eva Ruffing)
  7. “The Consequences of Public-Sector Personnel Management Systems” (chairs: Prof. Jan-Hinrik Meyer-Sahling & Prof. Sharon Gilad)
  8. “The administrative dimension of financial market regulation” (chairs: Dr. Tobias Bach & Prof. Kai Wegrich)
  9. “The Structure and Organisation of Government (SOG-PRO Project): Theoretical Perspectives and Empirical Evidence” (Prof. Kutsal Yesilkagit)
  10. “Mapping the State: Old and New Explanatory Perspectives” (Prof. Philippe Bezes)
  11. “Out of Control or over Controlled? Incentives, Audits and New Public Management” (Prof. Carl Dahlström & Prof. Marina Nistotskaya)
  12. “Policy proportionality” (chair: Prof. Moshe Maor)

SOG Bergen Meeting 2015

22.02.2015

Theme "Accountability and Welfare State Reforms", Uni Research Stein Rokkan Centre for Social Studies and Department of Administration and Organization Theory, University of Bergen, 19-20 February 2015

The IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government held its annual conference, hosted by the University of Bergen, on February 19-20. The theme was: “Accountability and Welfare State Reforms”. The conference addressed a crucial theme of comparative research and welcomed a large number of around 40 participants, presenting over 25 papers. The key themes were accountability, collaboration, welfare state transformation and the changing dynamics of political control and bureaucratic reputation.

The key note was given by one of the key public administration scholars – Johan P. Olsen, Professor Emeritus of Arena and University of Oslo.

Simon Neby and Per Lægreid were principal organizers of the conference.

SOG Jerusalem Meeting 2014

12.01.2014

Theme "What Makes Administrative Agencies Tick?", The Federman School of Public Policy and the Department of Political Science, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 05-07 January 2014.

The IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government held its annual conference, hosted by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, on January 5-7. The theme was: “what makes administrative agencies tick?” The conference benefited from a very large number of paper submissions, which allowed the organizers to be selective in ensuring high quality and coherent panels. Around forty participants presented their on-going work on interrelated themes such as agency autonomy, the changing dynamics of political control, agency competition and survival, bureaucratic expertise, bureaucratic reputation, blame avoidance and the consequences of management reforms.

Delegates were fortunate to have two leading public administration scholars – Daniel Carpenter of Harvard University and Donald Moynihan of the University of Wisconsin-Madison – as keynote speakers.

Professors Sharon Gilad and Moshe Maor were principal organizers of the conference. The meeting website is available under sog.huji.ac.il

IPSA World Congress - Montreal 2014

20.07.2014

SOG organised 10 panels at the IPSA World Congress in Montréal (20-24 July 2014). Moreover, we held our annual business meeting with updateson the net work and the journal Governance.

SOG organised 10 panels at the IPSA World Congress in Montréal (20-24 July 2014). Moreover, we held our annual business meeting with updateson the net work and the journal Governance.

The conference was a great success, also providing opportunities for more trans-atlantic academic exchange and debate. Again, SOG was grateful to have inspiring paper presentations, comments, and discussions - many thanks to the panel organisers, paper presenters and discussants and the active panel audience!

The SOG panels included:

  1. “The Moral and Ethical Implications of Accountability: Theory and Practice” (chair: Prof. Paola Mattei)
  2. “Greasy Poles towards Queasy Roles? The Politics of Selection at the Top of Ministerial Bureaucracies” (chair: Prof. Julia Fleischer)
  3. “Local Institutions and Participation in Urban Settings” (chair: Prof. Antonio Tavares)
  4. “The Study of the Structure of Government: A Field in Search of a New Agenda?” (chair: Prof. Martin Lodge)
  5. “The Reciprocal Influence of Policies and Administrative Networks” (chair: Dr. Eva Ruffing)
  6. “Analysing International Transfers from the Inside: Public Administration Reforms in Post-communist Europe” (chair: Prof. Magdaléna Hadjiisky)
  7. “The Effects of Delegation on Bureaucratic Influence over Policy-making” (chair: Prof. Kutsal Yesilkagit)
  8. Administrators at the Top (I): Recruitment Patterns, Career Paths and Role Perceptions of Senior Bureaucrats” (chair: Prof. Sylvia Veit)
  9. “Administrators at the Top (II): Career Bureaucrats, Political Appointees and Trends of Politicization” (chair: Prof. Eckhard Schröter)
  10. “Organizing for Internal Security and Crisis Management” (chair: Prof. Per Lægreid)
Program

IPSA World Congress - Madrid 2012

08.07.2012

SOG organized 10 panels at the IPSA World Congress in Madrid (8-12 July 2012). Moreover, we held our annual business meeting with updates on the net work and the journal Governance.

SOG organised 10 panels at the IPSA World Congress in Madrid (8-12 July 2012). Moreover, we held our annual business meeting with updates onthe net work and the journal Governance.

The conference offeres great opportunities for junior and senior researchers to meet and exchange theoretical viewpoints and empirical findings on a wide range of research topics currently discussed in our field. SOG is very glad for all the inspiring paper presentations, comments, and discussions. A big THANK YOU to all the panel organisers, paper presenters and discussants - and to the active panel audience!

The SOG panels included:

  1. “Administrative reforms in the welfare state and the challenges of accountability” (chairs: Prof. Werner Jann & Prof. Per Lægreid)
  2. “Creations, Changes and Inertia in Public Organizations” (chairs: Prof. Kai Wegrich & Prof. Per Lægreid)
  3. “Does Administrative Structure Matter? The Effects of Agencification on the Policy Process” (chairs: Prof. Martin Painter & Tobias Bach)
  4. “Organising policy advice: Ministerial cabinets and advisers across Europe” (chairs: Julia Fleischer & Dr. Salvador Parrado)
  5. “Organizational Dynamics of Central Government Organizations across Time” (chairs: Dr. Philippe Bezes & Dr. Kutsal Yesilkagit)
  6. “Reviewing the Agency Landscape: Autonomy, Accountability and Control” (chairs: Prof. Martin Painter & Tobias Bach)
  7. “The Politics of Representative Bureaucracy” (chairs: Prof. B. Guy Peters & Dr. Patrick von Maravic)
  8. “Theories of the Structure and Organization of Government” (chairs: Dr. Kutsal Yesilkagit & Dr. Philippe Bezes)
  9. “Theory and Concept(s) of Representative Bureaucracy” (chairs: Prof. B. Guy Peters & Dr. Patrick von Maravic)
  10. “General Panel of the Structure and Organization of Government Research Committee” (chairs: Prof. Joel Aberbach & Prof. Tom Christensen)

List of panels

WINNER of Levine Prize 2017

"Above Politics: Bureaucratic Discretion and Credible Commitment" by Gary J. Miller and Andrew B. Whitford

The winners of the 2017 Levine Prize are Gary J. Miller and Andrew B. Whitford for their book "Above Politics: Bureaucratic Discretion and Credible Commitment"

The committee says:

This interesting book turns much of the conventional wisdom about opportunistic and self-interested bureaucrats as the main problem of democratic governance upside down. Through a series of insightful vignettes and case studies, the authors powerfully argue that the moral hazard faced by politicians is a more serious problem than the proverbial runaway bureaucracy. They emphasize the benefits of a professionalized bureaucracy as a key element of checks and balances in the US system of separated powers and highlight the problematic effects of politicization on policy effectiveness. Written in an accessible style, the book will be useful as a reading for courses in different fields. The analytical leverage of the volume’s theoretical arguments is demonstrated in a case study of financial regulation in the US. The authors skilfully document how an emerging consensus favoring deregulation of financial markets gradually undermined financial regulators’ professional autonomy. The book demonstrates that exercising more control over bureaucrats may eventually lead to worse, not better performance. Miller and Whitford argue that the conventional principal agent perspective underestimates how professionalism makes autonomous bureaucracies predictable and constrains their actions. This book’s theoretical insights are highly relevant for scholars of executive politics both inside and outside the US, as it demonstrates the importance of professionalized and autonomous bureaucracies for achieving good governance. The Award Committee is pleased to see this year’s Levine Prize go to this interesting book which makes a contribution of great academic and policy significance.

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The Levine Prize 2017 committee was composed of Professor Tobias Bach (University of Oslo; Chair), Professor Caspar van den Berg (Leiden University), and Professor Ting Gong (City University of Hong Kong).

WINNER of Levine Prize 2016

"Networks in Contention: The Divisive Politics of Climate Change" by Jennifer Hadden

The winner of the 2016 Levine Prize is Jennifer Hadden for her book "Networks in Contention: The Divisive Politics of Climate Change".

The committe says:

This interesting book examines civil society organizations’ choice of mobilization strategy on climate change. It documents how organizations operate and interact with one another within the international climate change movement, explains how an organization’s position in movement networks affects its decisions on advocacy tactics, and demonstrates how groups’ strategies influence the global climate policy debate. The book takes an explicitly comparative perspective in dealing with international policy struggles. It provides not only rich discussion of issues involving networks in the policy area of policy change, but also a model for examination of other policy areas that involve both governmental and nongovernmental actors. Written in an accessible style, the book can be used as supplemental readings for courses in different fields.

The volume’s theoretical contributions emerge from bridging the literature on social movements and collective action with the increasingly rich literature on social networks and their political consequences. Studying international networks presents difficulties of both data collection and causal inference. The book confronts these challenges through a powerful mixed research strategy that deploys a wide range of data sources at different levels of analysis to map out network structures, chart degrees and trajectories of contentious action, and trace out the mechanisms through which networks exert their effects on organizational decision making. The book’s triangulation across empirical strategies makes for a highly compelling set of findings.

The Award Committee is pleased to see this year’s Levine Prize go to this interesting book which makes a contribution of great academic and policy significance.

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The Levine Prize 2016 committee was composed of Professors Julia Fleischer (University of Bergen; Chair), Caspar van den Berg (University of Leiden) and Beryl A. Radin (Georgetown University).

IPSA World Congress 2016 - 3rd time in a row with max. number of SOG panels!

SOG among the most active RCs at IPSA conferences

We are very pleased that this is the third IPSA World Congress in a row where the SOG community submitted so many panels and papers that we will have 10 SOG panels on the conference programme. Thereby, SOG is among the most active RCs at IPSA.

Check out the panels and the programme under the “Events” page.

WINNER of Levine Prize 2015

"Rethinking Private Authority: Agents and Entrepreneurs in Global Environmental Governance" by Jessica Green

The winner of the 2015 Levine Prize is Jessica Green for her book "Rethinking Private Authority: Agents and Entrepreneurs in Global Environmental Governance".

The committee says:

This fascinating book is a decisive contribution to the governance debate as it investigates the emergence, growth, and influence of private actors in global environmental and climate governance. It offers an innovative and novel theoretical approach, differentiating between ‘delegated private authority’ where state actors explicitly delegate rule-making authority to private actors and ‘entrepreneurial private authority’ where private actors engage in rule-making without such a delegation of state authority. Its empirical analysis combines quantitative methods assessing the growth and extent of private authority that is based upon novel systematic data on transnational environmental civic regulations with exceptionally well-conducted case studies on private authority in specific regulations of the Kyoto Protocol as well as in greenhouse-gas accounting and reporting.

This book advances our understanding of the role of private actors in transnational governance, most notably showing the relevance of the interplay between public and private actors for generating private authority. It demonstrates that entrepreneurial private authority is on the rise – and thereby triggers new research questions on legitimacy, accountability, and the relevance of public-private interactions for transnational governance. This book’s insights will make it highly relevant and useful for students of a wide range of topics in public administration and governance, public policy, and comparative politics.

This book’s insights will make it highly relevant and useful for students of a wide range of topics in public administration and governance, public policy, and comparative politics.

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The Levine Prize 2015 committee was composed of Professors Wai-Fung Lam (The University of Hong Kong; Chair), Alan M. Jacobs (University of British Columbia) and Beryl A. Radin (Georgetown University).

University of Bergen hosts successful SOG Annual Meeting 2015

Participants at 2015 SOG Conference in Bergen “Accountability and Welfare State Reforms”

The IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government held its annual conference, hosted by the University of Bergen, on February 19-20. The theme was: “Accountability and Welfare State Reforms”. The conference addressed a crucial theme of comparative research and welcomed a large number of around 40 participants, presenting over 25 papers. The key themes were accountability, collaboration, welfare state transformation and the changing dynamics of political control and bureaucratic reputation. The key notw was given by one of the key public administration scholars – Johan P. Olsen, Professor Emeritus of Arena and University of Oslo. Simon Neby and Per Lægreid were principal organizers of the conference.

RC27 Elections: Donald Moynihan and Julia Fleischer elected as new board members

RC 27 is in the process of electing new board members and officers. Two new board members (professor Donald P. Moynihan, University of Wisconsin and associate professor Julia Fleischer, University of Bergen) were elected in Montreal. They replace professor Herman Bakvis, University of Victoria and professor Hanne Foss Hansen, University of Copenhagen. We like to thank them for their work on the SOG Board and for their service and dedication to our research group.

A new co-chair (professor Martin Lodge, LSE to replace Joel Aberbach, UCLA) and a new Secretary/Treasurer (Robert Cox, University of South Carolina to replace professor Per Lægreid, University of Bergen) were nominated in Montreal. The latter two positions will be up for final election at our conference in Bergen in February 2015. Lodge will take office at the Bergen conference and Cox at the end of 2015. In addition, several other new board members will be elected at the Bergen conference. This rolling process provides both continuity and change and allows our research committee to function smoothly.

Links to information for Lodge and Cox are included below:

WINNER of Levine Prize 2014

"Bankers, Bureaucrats, and Central Bank Politics" by Christopher Adolph

The winner of the 2014 Levine Prize is Christopher Adolph for his book "Bankers, Bureaucrats, and Central Bank Politics".

The 2014 Levine Book Prize has been awarded to Christopher Adolph of the University of Washington for his book Bankers, Bureaucrats, and Central Bank Politics (Cambridge University Press). The committee says that Adolph’s book “raises important questions about the assumed all-importance of central bank independence and provides a fascinating insight into the ways the professional background of key officials shapes monetary policy.”

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The Levine Prize 2014 committee was composed of of Professors Agnes Batory (Central European University; Chair), Luc Juillet (University of Ottawa) and Julia Fleischer (University of Amsterdam).

SOG research committee has successful meeting at IPSA World Congress

The IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government (SOG) held ten panels during the 23rd IPSA World Congress 2014 that took place in Montreal, Québec, Canada on 19-24 July. These panels entailed various themes such like Administrators at the Top (Recruitment Patterns, Career Paths, Role Perceptions and Politicization of Senior Bureaucrats); Organizing for Internal Security and Crisis Management; Analysing International Transfers from the Inside: Public Administration Reforms in Post-communist Europe; The Reciprocal Influence of Policies and Administrative Networks; The Moral and Ethical Implications of Accountability: Theory and Practice; The Politics of Selection at the Top of Ministerial Bureaucracies; Local Institutions and Participation in Urban Settings; The Study of the Structure of Government: A Field in Search of a New Agenda?; The Effects of Delegation on Bureaucratic Influence over Policy-making. See details about all panels here. Around sixty participants including chairs, paper givers and discussants, presented their on-going work and communications. The event took place in the Palais des Congrès of Montreal in the City Center and a SOG diner was organized on 22 July.

Hebrew University hosts successful SOG Annual Meeting 2014

The IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government held its annual conference, hosted by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, on January 5-7. The theme was: “what makes administrative agencies tick?” The conference benefited from a very large number of paper submissions, which allowed the organizers to be selective in ensuring high quality and coherent panels. Around forty participants presented their on-going work on interrelated themes such as agency autonomy, the changing dynamics of political control, agency competition and survival, bureaucratic expertise, bureaucratic reputation, blame avoidance and the consequences of management reforms. Delegates were fortunate to have two leading public administration scholars – Daniel Carpenter of Harvard University and Donald Moynihan of the University of Wisconsin-Madison – as keynote speakers. The event took place in a lovely venue, overlooking the walls of the old city of Jerusalem. Altogether, this conference was a unique intellectual and social event. Professors Sharon Giladand Moshe Maor were principal organizers of the conference.

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Graham Wilson and Bert Rockman receive Kloeti Award 2014/2015

At the January meeting of the IPSA Research Committee on Structure and Organization of Government in Jerusalem, Graham Wilson of Boston University and Bert Rockman of Purdue University received the Ulrich Kloeti Award for Distinguished Contributions to the Study of Public Policy, Administration and Institutions. The award is presented annual to scholars who have made exceptional contributions to research in the field throughout their career. Aberbach and Lægreid have served SOG for many years, especially in their roles as co-chair and treasurer.