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The New Public Management, Homeland Security, and the Politics of Civil Service Reform

Authors

  • Norma M. Riccucci,

    Corresponding author
    1. Rutgers University, Newark
      Norma M. Riccucci is a professor of public administration at Rutgers University in Newark. Her research and teaching interests lie in the broad area of public management. She is currently the president of the Public Management Research Association, and is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration.
      E-mail: riccucci@rutgers.edu
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  • Frank J. Thompson

    Corresponding author
    1. Rutgers University, Newark
      Frank J. Thompson is a professor of public affairs and administration at Rutgers University in Newark. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and an affiliated faculty member at the Rutgers Center for State Health Policy. He has published extensively on politics and administration, public management, implementation, and health policy.
      E-mail: fjthomp@newark.rutgers.edu
    Search for more papers by this author

Norma M. Riccucci is a professor of public administration at Rutgers University in Newark. Her research and teaching interests lie in the broad area of public management. She is currently the president of the Public Management Research Association, and is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration.
E-mail: riccucci@rutgers.edu

Frank J. Thompson is a professor of public affairs and administration at Rutgers University in Newark. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and an affiliated faculty member at the Rutgers Center for State Health Policy. He has published extensively on politics and administration, public management, implementation, and health policy.
E-mail: fjthomp@newark.rutgers.edu

Abstract

This article examines the George W. Bush administration’s efforts to apply New Public Management reforms to the Department of Homeland Security. The primary focus is the administration’s attempt to implement the law. The managerial strategy that Department of Homeland Security and Office of Personnel Management executives used to carry out the law in the massive new department receives attention, with a special focus on the approach used in dealing with the federal courts. The article suggests five general lessons concerning civil service deregulation at the federal level. The case reaffirms the notion that successful administrative reform requires a keen appreciation for the politics that shape it.

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