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Goodsell persuasively argues that public servants and administrative institutions are among the best in the world. Contrary to popular stereotypes, they are neither sources of great waste nor a threat to liberty, but social assets of critical value to a functioning democracy. In presenting his case, Goodsell touches on core aspects of public administration while drawing on important events, case material, and empirical evidence. Charles Goodsell is a beloved and highly-respected scholar in public administration and his impassioned case for bureaucrats is a favorite among public administration students and instructors alike.

Earning and Retaining the Public Trust
Earning and retaining the public trust

In the article I cite in chapter 4 which offers the distinction of Rule and Response as over against politics and administration, I ventured another departure from public administration orthodoxy. This was to contend that the ultimate goal of bureaucracy in a democratic society is to build and maintain the public trust in its government. I made the point using a pyramidal diagram labeled “the mountain of public administration purpose.” The lower half of the pyramid shows a set of penultimate “foothill goals” of legality, integrity, efficiency, effectiveness, public involvement, dependability, transparency and fairness. These reach upward ...

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