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Research in public administration and public management has distinctive features that influence the choices and application of research methods. Periods of change and upheaval in the public sector provide ample opportunities and cases for research, but the standard methodologies for researching in the social sciences can be difficult to follow in the complex world of the public sector. In a dynamic political environment, the focus lies on solving social problems whilst also using methodological principles needed for doing scientifically sound research.
Research Methods in Public Administration and Public Management represents a comprehensive guide to doing and using research in public management and administration. It is impressively succinct but covering a wide variety of research strategies including among others: action research, hypotheses, sampling, case selection, questionnaires, interviewing, desk research, prescription and research ethics. This textbook does not bog the nascent researcher down in the theory but does provide numerous international examples and practical exercises to illuminate the research journey. Sandra Van Thiel guides us through the theory, operationalization and research design process before explaining the tools required to carry-out impactful research.
This concise textbook will be core reading for those studying research methods and/or carrying out research on public management and administration.