The Ground Floor of Government in Context
Edited by Peter Hupe
In this chapter street-level bureaucracy is considered as a field of scholarly inquiry positioned within the broader study of the policy process and policy implementation. Given the development of the study of government-in-action, what kinds of insights have been gained and how can the state of knowledge be characterized? Street-level bureaucracy as a scholarly theme of its own is the result of an ongoing process of academic differentiation and specialization. More or less parallel with the first top-down implementation studies, scholars asked attention about what, in contrast, happens at the bottom of public administration. The later plea for synthesizing approaches so far has not led to one, generally adopted, grand implementation theory. Against this background some aspects of collected thought on the policy process, implementation and street-level bureaucracy are highlighted as general points to be kept in mind – or pitfalls to be avoided – when doing research on government-in-action.
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