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Excursions in Administrative Ethnography

Excursions in Administrative Ethnography

Organisational ethnography covers all kinds of organisation—voluntary organisations, private corporations, non-governmental organisations, religious organisations, indeed any organisation. In this e-book, we narrow the scope to public sector organisations in the developed world. We use ethnography to study the public bureau, the state office, governance, policy or simply the public administration as we experience it as citizens in our everyday lives. Hence, while the ethnographies included in this e-book focus on distinct ‘offices’, we have a bigger agenda. We seek to show that political science, and especially public administration, can gain much from using ethnography. We seek to bring together two fields of enquiry, and answer the question of what political scientists and students of public administration can learn from organisational ethnography when studying public administration and public policy.


Becoming digital – passages to service in the digitized bureaucracy, Deciding on tax evasion – front line discretion and constraints, Doing ethnography in a paranoid organization: an autoethnographic account, Excursions in Administrative Ethnography, Focus groups and prime ministers' chiefs of staff, Political and Administrative Ethnographies, Street-level planning; the shifty nature of ‘local knowledge and practice’, Who are we trying to impress?: reflections on navigating political science, ethnography and interpretation

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