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Administration as a civic institution in the political thought of Woodrow Wilson

Brian J. Cook (Department of government and International Relations, Clark University, Worcester, MA)

Journal of Management History (Archive)

ISSN: 1355-252X

Article publication date: 1 December 1997


Progressive era debates about politics and economics featured a concern for the effects of political and economic institutions on the civic vitality of democratic regimes. Similarly, over the course of his scholarly work on public administration and management, Woodrow Wilson developed a civic or “constitutive” conception of administration in a constitutional democracy. An examination of Wilson’s most well‐known works, as well as his lectures on administration and public law, reveals the development of Wilson’s thinking on this score. Taking Wilson’s ideas into consideration can enrich current debates about public management and its impact on the quality of democratic governance.



Cook, B.J. (1997), "Administration as a civic institution in the political thought of Woodrow Wilson", Journal of Management History (Archive), Vol. 3 No. 4, pp. 287-297.




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