Networks in Public Administration: Current Scholarship in Review

34 Pages Posted: 2 Jul 2012 Last revised: 14 Feb 2013

Jesse D. Lecy

Maxwell School of Syracuse University; Georgia State University - Andrew Young School of Policy Studies

Ines Mergel

Syracuse University - Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs

Hans Peter Schmitz

University of San Diego

Date Written: July 1, 2012

Abstract

Network-focused research in public administration has expanded rapidly over the past two decades. This rapid growth has created come confusion about terminology and approaches to research in the field. We organize the network literature in public administration using compact citation networks to identify coherent subdomains focused on policy formation, governance and policy implementation. We trace how these domains differ in their approach to defining the role of networks, relationships and actors and to what extent the articles apply formal network analysis techniques. Based on a subsequent content analysis of the sample articles, we identify promising research avenues focused on the wider adoption of methods derived from social network analysis and the conditions under which networks actually deliver improved results.

Keywords: network research in public administration, social network analysis, policy networks, citation analysis, snowball sampling, governance

Suggested Citation

Lecy, Jesse D. and Mergel, Ines and Schmitz, Hans Peter, Networks in Public Administration: Current Scholarship in Review (July 1, 2012). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2097863 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2097863

Jesse D. Lecy (Contact Author)

Maxwell School of Syracuse University ( email )

400 Eggers Hall
Syracuse, NY 13244
United States

Georgia State University - Andrew Young School of Policy Studies ( email )

Public Management and Policy
35 Broad Street, 6th Floor
Atlanta, GA 30303-3083
United States

Ines Mergel

Syracuse University - Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs ( email )

215 Eggers Hall
Syracuse, NY 13244
United States

HOME PAGE: http://faculty.maxwell.syr.edu/iamergel/

Hans Peter Schmitz

University of San Diego ( email )

5998 Alcala Park
San Diego, CA 92110-2492
United States

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