Democracy, Public Administration, and Public Values in an Era of Estrangement

Curtis Ventriss, James L. Perry, Tina Nabatchi, H. Brinton Milward, Jocelyn M. Johnston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


This essay responds to the prevailing political environment of estrangement that can be seen in the growing distrust of public institutions, intensifying levels of political polarization, and rising support for populism, particularly in the United States. These trends have contributed to a diminished sense of publicness in public administration, including an erosion of public values and political legitimacy, and an increasingly cynical view of the value, role, and purpose of public service in the modern polity. We argue that public administration must respond actively to this estrangement and seek to repair and strengthen the links between democracy, public administration, and public values through scholarship, connections to practice and the public, and education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-282
Number of pages8
JournalPerspectives on Public Management and Governance
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Administration


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