4 pages/≈1100 words
Business & Marketing
public administration decision making (Essay Sample)
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PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION Name: Course: Professor Name: (January 20, 2012) Public Administration There are two kinds of decision making: the rational comprehensive (root) method and the successive limited comparisons (branch) method. Lindblom (1959), states that the root method is thought to be the ideal, of what is supposed to happen, while the branch method is what actually occurs most often. He admits that there are strengths and weaknesses to both strategies. To understand what each of these methods entail it is important that we individually dissect each method to gain more insight as to how decisions are made. In the root or rational comprehensive method the administrator notes down the desired aspects of his goal in order of importance. He then formulates multiple alternatives to attain the said aspects. Finally he picks out the best alternative that maximizes the number of aspects to be met (Stillman, 2006). This approach is said to be rational because the alternatives and values are logically chosen and weighed in relation to importance. It is also comprehensive as all the alternatives and values are considered by the policy maker. It operates on the assumption that there are absolute values on all sides to agree on and is time-consuming. Stillmann goes on to dissect successive limited comparisons or branch method he explains that this is exactly what occurs in public administrative decision making here the objective is established but often gets amended: widened or narrowed thus ends up being compromised since it is soon mixed up with other goals. Administrators provide a wide range of possible alternatives but rarely stray from the few incremental steps that history and experience have shown to be feasible this may lead to many beneficial social values being overlooked since the decision makers select only the option that is immediately relevant. Rational selection of the most optimal course of action that satisfies a clearly defined list of values does not take place. Public policy makers logically select from among the immediate options at hand the most suitable compromise that satisfies groups and individuals concerned with the program. To better understand these decision making processes models Stillman (2006) asserts that there is need to critically view their strongpoints and shortcomings beginning with the root method. This process strongly emphasizes the need for comprehensive analysis, every important relevant factor is taken into account, potential outcomes are considered alternate policies are also reflected on. On paper this methodology passes the test of a â€˜good` policy as it can be proven to be the most appropriate means to a desired end. Goals are clearly identified and objectified in terms of priority this is usually a prerequisite if proper empirical analysis of alternative policies is to take place, this empowers the policy makers with a broader view of the task at hand. Lindblom (1959) argues that the root method incorrectly assumes that administrations making the decisions have limitless amounts of time and resources available to them. "It assumes intellectual capacities and sources of information that simply are non-existent and it is even more illogical as an approach to policy when the time and money that can be allocated to a policy problem is limited, as is always the case;(Lindblom 195...
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