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The Napoleonic tradition

B. Guy Peters (Department of Political Science, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA)

International Journal of Public Sector Management

ISSN: 0951-3558

Article publication date: 29 February 2008



This paper intends to provide a framework for understanding the concept of administrative tradition, and then applies it to Napoleonic administrative systems.


The analysis involves the creation of a number of dimensions that can be used to analyze traditions, and the paper demonstrates the range of application of the dimensions.


Provides findings from a number of studies of public administration.


This framework is applied primarily to industrialized democracies in this paper but can be used across the full range of administrative systems, and is a significant augmentation of existing frameworks for comparative analysis.



Guy Peters, B. (2008), "The Napoleonic tradition", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 21 No. 2, pp. 118-132.



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