2nd Edition

Research Methods in Public Administration and Public Management An Introduction

By Sandra van Thiel Copyright 2022
    204 Pages 5 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    204 Pages 5 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Research in Public Administration and Public Management has distinctive features that influence the choices and application of research methods. The standard methodologies for researching from the social sciences can be difficult to follow in the complex world of the public sector. In a dynamic political context, the focus lies on solving societal problems whilst also using methodological principles to do scientifically sound research.

    The second edition of Research Methods in Public Administration and Public Management represents a comprehensive guide to undertaking and using research in Public Management and Administration. It is succinct but covers a wide variety of research strategies, including action research, experiments, case studies, desk research, systematic literature reviews and more. It pays attention to issues of design, sampling, research ethics and data management. This textbook does explain the role of theory, but also offers many international examples and practical exercises. It takes the reader through the journey of research, starting with the problem definition, choice of theory, research design options and tools to achieve impactful research.

    New and revised material includes, but is not limited to:

    • A closer look at popular methods like the experiment and the systematic literature review;
    • A deeper examination of research ethics and data management;
    • New examples from a wide range of countries;
    • Updated ‘Further Reading’ material and additional useful websites.

    This exciting new edition will be core reading for students at all levels as well as practitioners who are carrying out research on Public Management and Administration.

    1 Research in Public Administration

    2 The research problem

    3 Theoretical framework

    4 Operationalization

    5 Research design

    6 The experiment

    7 The survey

    8 The case study

    9 Desk research

    10 Analysing quantitative data

    11 Analysing qualitative data

    12 Reporting results


    Sandra van Thiel is Professor of Public Management at Erasmus University Rotterdam and Radboud University, Nijmegen, the Netherlands. Her research and teaching focus on executive agencies and research methods. She is a frequent consultant to public sector organizations, and she is Editor-in-Chief of IJPSM.

    ‘The second edition of Research Methods in Public Administration and Public Management has built on the strengths of its predecessor. The revised book has been carefully crafted to offer a comprehensive coverage of all dimensions of the research process and includes an up-to-date literature, and relevant cases and sensible exercises that are lucidly explained. It is an excellent contribution to this quality series of texts in public management.’

    John Halligan, Emeritus Professor of Public Administration and Governance, Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis, University of Canberra, Australia 

    ‘This new edition after such a short time proves how indispensable this book is. Studying and doing research in Public Administration and Public Management has become ever more relevant, and in doing that we utilize all modern research methodologies of the social sciences, as we should! But at the same time research in these areas poses unique problems and challenges. Here we finally have our own textbook which explicates these problems and demonstrates how to handle them, using inspiring examples from all areas of up-to-date public administration research.’

    Prof. Dr. Werner Jann, Emeritus Professor of Political Science, Administration and Organization, Faculty for Economics and Social Sciences, Potsdam University, Germany