IAS Mains Public Administration 2020 Topic-wise Important Questions

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Historical Backdrop

  1. “Kautilya was not only the foremost politico-administrative thinker of ancient India, but he was an advocate and preacher of moral values too.” Comment

  2. Trace the evolution of Judicial Administration in India during the Mughal and British periods of Indian History and highlight the major landmarks of this evolution from 1774 to 1911.

  3. ‘Lord Ripon was the prophet of local government in India’. Comment

  4. ‘The British colonial administration superimposed the prefectural system on the historically inherited district administration in India, in the absence of rural local governments at the district level. “ Comment

  5. “Popular belief is that ownership change from public to private brings about improved performance.” Comment.

  6. “From Woodrow Wilson to Herbert Simon most writers on administration have taken the achievement of efficiency as the central objective. Justify the statement with references to the work of major writers.

  7. “Reservation policy and its implementation has had some positive impact in relation to terms on the socio-economic development of the SCs and STs but it is very meager in absolute terms.” Comment.

  8. ‘As the fundamental law of administration of the land, the Indian constitution lacks teeth in its institutional package to realize the laudable ideals enshrined in the constitution. Comment.

  9. “Taylor’s scientific management ignored social and psychological factors’. Comment

  10. ‘Explain the ‘peter principle’ in respect of promotion policy in a hierarchical organization.

  11. “Bureaucracy is ‘a system of government the control of which is so completely in the hands of officials that their power jeopardizes the liberties of ordinary citizens.” Comment

  12. Although the theory of V.A. Graicunas is admittedly crude, it is useful as a reference against which variations between organizations as well as within organizations can be examined. Comment.

  13. “The constitutional provisions for the appointment of a special officer for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes are more investigative than executive in orientation.” Comment.

  14. “Culturally sanctioned values and symbols have acted as important influencing catalyst in administration” – Elaborate.

  15. Public undertakings of the central government could be booked upon both as an asset and a liability. Which measures would you suggest to enhance their utility as an asset and to reduce their drag as a liability? Examine in depth the working of on central public undertaking in this context.

  16. “The public sector has to grow. It has a strategic importance”. Comment

  17. Examine the basic postulated of the Human Relations Theory and show how far it differs from the classical theory of organizations.

  18. “The main problem with Mary Parker Follet’s work is that her idealism is showing”. Explain

  19. “Describe the major challenges in front of Public Sector Undertakings and recommendations of S.K. Roongta committee to confront them”.

  20. “From Taylorims to Mayoism the organization theory has travelled a long road in quest of Organisational Effectiveness.” Comment

  21. “Many problems of Worker-Management co-operation were the results of the emotionally based attitudes of the workers rather than objective difficulties in the situation.” (Elton Mayo) Comment.

  22. Critically examine conflict resolution according to M.P. Follett. Explain how McGregor took forward her ideas to the context of complex organizations.

  23. Article 78 in the constitution confers Executive Power on the President”. Elucidate

  24. The Judicial control over administration is no substitute for parliamentary control. In fact, they are supplementary but serve two different kinds of purposes.” Discuss.

  25. Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has undergone several changes since its inception in 1980’s. Comment

  26. “Cabinet Secretariat and the Prime Minister’s Secretariat in India have common but dissimilar staff, functions.” Elucidate.

  27. The Prime Minister’s office is a staff agency. Its line functions are inconsistent with the Secretariat Systems of administration. “Comment.

  28. “Trace the evolution of Secretariat system in India during the British period of administration history with special reference to the structure of central administration and its field organisations.

  29. Critically examine the role of the Finance Ministry as the custodian of all public revenues.

  30. ‘It is high time that the distribution of central assistance under article 282 of Indian constitution, (which is entirely or even mainly made on the basis of Semi-Judicial Awards of the Finance Commission) needs to be reexamined in all its implications. Why?

Evolution of Public Administration

  1. “To appreciate the current status of a discipline, we must know where it has been; what it has seen.” Elucidate the above statement in light of evolution of Public administration as a discipline.

  2. In the 100 odd years Public administration has gone through successive definition crisis because of various trends, paradigms and paths evolved. Discuss.

New Public Administration

  1. New public administration is less generic more public, less descriptive more normative, less initiation oriented and more client impact oriented and yet it is no less scientific” – Frederickson. Discuss.

  2. Under Minnowbrook conference II the specifics of what government should do were underplayed as the over indulgence with policy making was withdrawn. Discuss.

  3. “New public administration is dead; long live digital era of governance.” Comment. (2010)

  4. “New public administration is …. a revolution or radicalism in words and (at best) status quo in skills or technologies.” Examine. (2009)

  5. Do you think that over reliance on rules has sidelined emotive rationality of administrators? Do you think switching over to market oriented approach could change the scenario? (200 Words)

  6. How do you rate the Public Choice’s ‘pleasure pain calculus of individuals’ to Benthamite public interest in public administration? Also explain the challenges faced by the bureaucracy to reorient itself for methodological individualism. (200 Words)

Public Choice Approach, Challenges of Liberalization, Privatization, Globalization

  1. “Even the global village is culturally plural rather than being homogeneous, meaning thereby that though the distances have shrunk, difference have not” Explain. (250 Words)

  2. Public administration today stands at the crossroads of public choice theory, pluralism, corporatism and elitism.” Discuss. (250 Words)

  3. “The state is essential for putting in place the appropriate institutional foundations for markets”. Comment. (200 Words)

  4. What according to you are the most important changes brought into public administration by Privatization movement. (200 Words)

  5. “The actions of public administrators have the forces of law and coercive power of government behind them”. Do you think administrators could claim similar authority in a globalized world? (200 Words)

  6. Examine the implications of globalization for administrative ethics and development ethics. (200 Words)

New Public Management and Good Governance

  1. Democracy and good governance are contradictions in terms. Critically examine (stating examples) the appropriateness of this statement in todays era.

  2. New public management (NPM) has its origin in “Reaganism (US) & Thatcherism (UK)”. Comment. Also discuss reforms which were undertaken in countries like Australia, New Zealand & Thailand on the lines of NPM.

  3. Explain each of the following: (In less than 100 words)

    1. “Business Process Re-engineering” by Hammer & Champy.

    2. The New public service: Serving not steering.

  4. Varied lessons to improve governance capacity today emerge from World bank prescriptions, studies by Commonwealth secretariat and experience of other countries globally. Discuss. (250 Words)

  5. Explain each of the following: (In less than 100 words)

    1. “Re-inventing government” by Osborne & Gaebler.

    2. Digital era governance

  6. “Our empirical results show a strong positive causal relationship from improved governance to better development outcomes.” Discuss the findings of researches by keefer, knack & kaufmann on effect of governance quality on citizens life. (250 Words)

  7. “The equity and legitimacy aspects are as important, or perhaps more important, than good management.” Comment. (200 words)

  8. Do you think good governance is a throwback to the classical theory of ‘one best way of governance’? How is it, if any, different from neo-Wilsons? (200 words)

  9. Participation in authentic discourse requires ‘warrants for discourse’.” In the light of above statement explain the broader democratic consequences of a pro-active citizenry? (200 Words)

  10. We don’t need more government; we need better government.” Comment. (200 Words)

Scientific Management & Scientific Management Movement

  1. Taylor unlike other thinkers was a practitioner not a theorist. Discuss how Taylor’s life and work influenced his ideas about scientific management. (250 Words)

  2. Describe each of the following (In not more than 100 words)

    1. Time & Motion study.

    2. Differential piece wage system.

    3. Functional foreman-ship.

    4. Management by Exception (M.B.E.) Past years (250 Words)

  3. “Taylor’s contribution was not a set of general principles for organizing work efficiency, but a set of operating procedures that could be employed in each concrete situation to secure their application.” Critically comment. (2009)

  4. “Taylor’s scientific management ignored social & psychological factors.” Analyse. (2007)

  5. Do you think scientific management offers any solution to the issues in public administration of a developing country like India? Elaborate.

  6. The Scientific management is blamed to create a monopoly of knowledge and de-personalization of work. What issues arise due to these? Is the threat real? Evaluate.

  7. How has scientific management approach widened the horizon of public administration?

Classical Theories

  1. “What is Taylor to America is Fayol to Europe.” In light of the above statement discuss the similarities and differences in their contribution to Public Administration. (250 Words)

  2. Describe each of the following (In not more than 75 words)

    1. Gang Plank

    2. Esprit de Corps

    3. Peter Principle’

  3. In a hierarchy every employee tends to rise in level of incompetence. Comment. (1996)

  4. “The law of Graicunas about the span of relationships in an organisation states a partial truth.” Comment.

  5. Is the top down approach necessarily outdated? What are the aspects in which you shall favor ‘administrative management approach’?

  6. The classical principals “…form neither a coherent conceptual pattern of determination nor an accurate description of concrete empirical reality” Comment.

  7. Co-ordination is the fundamental principle of any organization. Comment.

Weber’s Bureaucratic Model

  1. Consider the following statements

    1. “Technically, the bureaucracy represents the purest type of legal-rational authority”

    2. “Bureaucracy does not represent the only type of legal authority.”

  2. “Weberian model of bureaucracy lacks empirical validity when applied to modern democratic administration.” Examine. (2003)

  3. “It is not weak but strong bureaucracy that creates concern in democracy.” Comment. (1999)

Critique of Weber’s Model and Post-Weberian Developments

  1. “The transition to a study of the negatives aspects of bureaucracy is afforded by the application of Veblen’s concept of trained incapacity.” Examine. (250 Words)

  2. Weber’s ideas of impersonal detachment and esprit de corps are incompatible. Explain (250 Words)

Dynamic Administration

  1. “Chronologically, M.P.Follett belonged to Scientific Management Technique era (of rational economic man) but philosophically to social man era.” – Daniel Wren. Comment.

  2. “Her suggestions were in advance of her times, advance of current thinking. But they are goldmine of suggestion…..establishing & maintaining human groups & their co-ordination in the conduct of an enterprise.” – Metcalf & Urwick. Comment.

  3. Follet’s ideas are considered to be Utopian & idealist, but this simplicity must not be allowed to conceal the true value. Critically comment.

  4. Human relations approach has enlarged the role of social ethics in management philosophy. Evaluate. [200 words]

  5. Leadership is the ‘influential increment over and above mechanical compliance with the routine directives of the organization’ [Katz and Kahn]. Analyze. (150 WORDS) [CSM 2012]

  6. Human relations approach urges co-operation over competition and inter dependence over individualism. Examine [200 words]

Human Relations School (Elton Mayo & Others)

  1. To what extent has the human relations movement contributed to the knowledge and practice within the field of personnel administration? (250 Words)

  2. “From Taylorism to Mayoism the organisation theory has travelled a long road in quest of Organisational Effectiveness.” Comment. (250 Words)

Functions of the Executive

  1. “The Barnard-Simon Theory of Organisation is essentially a theory of motivation.” Comment.

  2. Why is that the behavioral approach to the study of organisations is a continuous phenomenon? Discuss.

  3. “While Taylor and his associates concentrated on improving the task efficiency of the individual, Barnard on the other hand, started with individual, moved to cooperative effort, and ended with executive functions.” Comment.

  4. “… a more thorough consideration leads to the understanding that communication, authority, specialization and purpose are all aspects comprehended in coordination.” – (Chester I. Barnard). Comment. [Civil Services 2000/20 Marks]

  5. “Barnard emphasizes on purpose as a central question but pays no attention to the choice of the purpose in a changing world or to the processes of formulating goals and objectives for the organization”. Comment [200 words]

  6. What is the nature of psychological contract pursued by organizational management through authority and the employees through the exertion of upward influence? [CSM 2013/15 MARKS]

Simon’s Decision Making Theory

  1. “Though somewhat unwittingly, Herbert Simon and James March have provided, the muscle and flesh to the Weberian (bureaucratic) skeleton.” Comment.

  2. “Administrative efficiency is enhanced by keeping at a minimum the number of organizational levels through which a matter must pass before it is acted upon.” Comment.

  3. “Three features characterize Simon’s original view of bounded rationality : search for alternatives, satisfying, and aspiration adaptation.” Elucidate. [CSM 2012/200 Words]

  4. “Simon’s identifying decision-making as the core field of public administration appears logically acceptable but his positivist underpinning is problematic.” Critically examine the statement. [CSM 2010/300 Words]

Concepts of Accountability & Control

  1. Discuss the concept of ‘accountability’ and ‘control’ and highlight the impact it has when applied to administration.

  2. “The weakest aspect of Indian administrative system is utter disregard of accountability.” Examine the contemporary tools used for enforcing accountability. What steps are necessary to make them more effective?

Legislative, Executive and Judicial Control over Administration

  1. “Executive control over administration is much more real.” Comment.

  2. “The controls exercised over administration by legislature are, in sum, of greater theoretical than practical efficiency.” Comment.

Role of Media & Interest (Pressure) Groups

  1. Pressure groups ensure that an individual’s democratic rights are not confined just to the act of voting. Discuss.

  2. Explain how media can play a constructive role in improving the performance of Indian administrative machinery.

Voluntary Organisations (NGO), Civil Society Organisations (CSO)

  1. “Civil society is being forced to grapple with both external and internal challenges, from those who are seeking to make civil society stronger as well as those who question its right to play certain roles. Critically analyse. (250 Words)

  2. NGO as an expression of voluntarism is a two faced entity, which acts as an extension counter of the state, engaging in acts of humanitarian and social work and at another level, it is a political and cognitive entity challenging development paradigms and arguing issues of governance and democracy. Elucidate. (250 Words)

Citizen Administration Interface, Citizen Charters

  1. Though citizens’ charters have been formulated by many public service delivery organisations, there is no corresponding improvement in the level of citizens’ satisfaction and quality of services being provided. Analyse. (250 Words)

Grievance Redressal Mechanism, Social Audit

  1. Analyse the importance of social audit and suggest measures to make it more effective in the process of implementing governmental schemes.

  2. Discuss the “Sevottam model” of excellence in service delivery.

  3. Discuss certain best practices of grievance redressal mechanism followed by states highlighting the role e-governance in it.

Administrative Law- Meaning, Scope and Significance

  1. Administrative law is a law related to administration. Comment. (250 Words)

  2. In India, administrative law has developed through judicial activism and creativity without much help from the legislature. Do you agree? Why do you think this is so? (250 Words)

  3. “In its broadest sense, the administration can be defined as the activities of group cooperating to accomplish common goals.” Evaluate.

  4. “..It would appear that any definition of this field [Public Administration] would be either so encompassing as to call forth the wrath or ridicule of others, or so limiting as to stultify its own disciples.” Mosher. Critically comment.

  5. Comment on the importance of sense of Public interest as a wider ethical commitment in public administration. (200 Words)

  6. Public administration is not just implementation of laws; it is also a means of social justice and social change”. Comment. (200 Words)

  7. Administrative law is a law related to administration. Comment. [200 Words]

  8. In India, administrative law has developed through judicial activism and creativity without much help from the legislature. Do you agree? Why do you think this is so? [250 Words]

Dicey on Administrative Law

  1. Would you agree that the strong Rechsstaat version of the rule of law found on the continent never existed in England because of its particular history? [CSM 2012/250 Words]

  2. Why is le droit administaitif regarded alongside the Napoleonic code as the most notable achievement of French legal science? [CSM 2012/250 Words]

  3. Would you agree that the strong Rechsstaat version of the rule of law found on the continent never existed in England because of its particular history? [CSM 2012/250 Words]

  4. Why is le droit administaitif regarded alongside the Napoleonic code as the most notable achievement of French legal science? [CSM 2012/250 Words]

Dicey on Administrative Law, Delegated Legislation

  1. Delegated legislation in the era of modern positive state is a necessary evil but is not absolute. Examine.

  2. “Dicey was wrong not only in his concept of the rule of law but he also overlooked the significance of the administrative law.” Comment.

  3. “The Droit Administrative violates dicey’s basic principles of rule of law. Comment.

  4. Make out a case for Delegated Legislation. [CSM 2011/200 Words]

Concept of Development

  1. Development administration is “an action oriented goal oriented administrative system.” (Edward Wiedner). Comment. (250 Words)

  2. “Development Administration has two important aspects viz. ‘the administration of development’ and ‘the development of administration’.” Explain. (250 Words)

Changing Profile of Development Administration

  1. “The market has become the new icon of developmentalism.” Comment. (250 Words)

  2. Describe the changing profile of development administration and identify its efforts towards people’s empowerment. (250 Words)

Historical and Sociological Factors Affecting Administrative Systems

  1. “No science of public administration is possible unless … there is a body of comparative studies from which it may be possible to discover principles and generalities that transcend national boundaries and peculiar historical experiences” Discuss.

  2. A major problem with comparative public administration is that it has been behavioural. Comment.

Administration and Politics in Different Countries

  1. “The main distinction between administration in western countries and in underdeveloped countries does not lie in differences in socio-cultural heritage but rather in the respective economic environments.” Comment.

  2. “Instead of looking inward in their own values and requirements, the Asian countries looked outward.” Comment.

Balanced and Unbalanced Politics

  1. “…. non-western states often, if not always, have unbalanced politics, but these may not necessarily be bureaucratic politics.” Discuss. (250 Words)

Current Status of Comparative Public Administration

  1. “The emphasis in most of the writings on comparative bureaucracy appears to be on the interaction between the administrative subsystem and the political system in which it exist.” Comment.

  2. “The growth of comparative public administration is a continuing process and is of relevance for both operational and academic study of public administration.” Discuss.

Riggsian Models and Their Critique

  1. Explain how the concept of ‘clects’ and ‘bazaar-canteen’ model explain the working of the administrative system in a developing society. In this context compare the working of the administrative system in a developed world & in a developing society. (250 Words)

  2. “The nature of Prismatic Society adversely tells upon the phenomenon of administrative development which in turn hinders the working of development administration. ((250 Words)

  3. “Neither Edward Weidner nor Fred Riggs was able to describe the process of development administration adequately.”

Explain the drawbacks and weakness in their theoretical analyses. [CSM 2011/400 Words]

  1. “The prismatic model of Riggs is equally applicable to developing as well as developed society.” Comment. [CSM 2010/250 Words]

  2. Riggs failed to recognize the role of outside or external forces in the process of development. Do you agree? [200 Words]

  3. Does the Indian social reality represent the characteristics of prismatic society? Explain with illustrations. [200 Words]

  4. “Riggs’ ecological approach is non-ecological.” Comment [200 Words]

Public Choice Approach, New Public Management

  1. “The advent of the concept of “roll back of the state” since the nineteen eighties has been altering the role of Public Administration but certainly not diminishing its central place in human society.” Discuss. (250 Words)

  2. “The ‘New Public Management’ (NPM) is an incarnation of a new model of public sector management in response of the challenges of liberalization, international competitiveness and technological changes.” Explain. (250 Words)

  3. “The advent of the concept of “roll back of the state” since the nineteen eighties has been altering the role of Public Administration but certainly not diminishing its central place in human society.” Discuss. (200 words)

Models of Policy Making and Their Critique

  1. “Public policy is what politics is about.” – Substantiate. (250 Words)

  2. ‘Policy making is a series of continuing dynamic processes which are plural and composite.’ Explain. (250 Words)

Processes of Conceptualization

  1. “The activities of public administrators at various stages of the policy process illustrate the difficulty of divorcing politics from administration.” Comment.

  2. “Public administration can be portrayed as wheel of relationships focussed on the formulation and implementation of public policy.” Explain.

Planning and Implementation

  1. “Implementing a public policy is a process of discovering what works and what does not.” Examine. (250 Words)

  2. Define public policy. How does its formulation and implementation involve participation by administrators, voluntary agencies and pressure groups in a democracy? (250 Words)


  1. “Laxity in monitoring and evaluation can render even the best policies infructuous.” Discuss. (250 Words)

Wilson’s View of Public Administration

  1. “The field of Public Administration is a field of business.”(Woodrow Wilson) Comment. (CSE 2009/20 marks)

  2. “Calling Woodrow Wilson, the father of Public Administration is doing injustice to equally or even more eminent contributions made prior to him.” Comment. (CSE 2008/ 20 marks)

  3. “While professionalization was advocated in the management of government, Wilson was well aware of the wider agenda of public administration.” Mohit Bhattacharya. In the light of above statement evaluates the relevance of Wilson’s ideas in developing countries of 21st century. (200 Words)

  4. “The study of public administration developed as an offshoot of political science or public law, and until recently administration as an academic subject was the very plain step-sister of these older disciplines”. Peter Self. Examine (200 Words)

Introduction (Evolution), Administrative Thinkers (Scientific Management)

  1. The theoretical evolution of Public Administration is essentially ‘ecological’. Elucidate. (250 Words)

  2. The criticisms stating Fayol’s principles as ‘cold-blooded engineering’ with no regard for human element seem selective and exaggerated. Critically Comment. (250 Words)

Administrative Thought -Weber’s Bureaucratic Model- Its Critiques and Post-Weberian Developments

  1. E-governance is the final arrival of Max Weber’s iron cage of rationality. Discuss. (CSE 2011/20 marks/200 Words)

  2. In what way is Weber’s ‘legal-rational’ model of bureaucracy seemingly ‘irrational’? (15 marks/150 words)

  3. Weberian bureaucracy refers to the sociological concept of rationalization of collective activities. Examine [200 words]

  4. “Censorship is a bureaucratic instrument for maintaining politics as a private and reserved domain of a particular class.” Examine. [250 Words]

  5. “Bureaucracy is the medium through which particular interests were translated into general interests”. Critically analyze. [250 Words]

  6. “Bureaucracy changes knowledge into secrecy and competence into mystery”. Comment. [200 Words]

  7. All big organizations tend to develop a bureaucratic structure which ruled out the possibility of internal democracy. Do you agree? [200 Words]

  8. “… [Bureaucracy]... offers for carrying through the principle of specializing administrative functions according to purely objective considerations”. Comment [200 Words]

  9. “..Public service must be representative if the state is to liberate rather than to enslave” -Donald J Kingsley. Comment [200 Words]

  10. What are the practical issues in establishing a representative bureaucracy in a third world country like India? [200 Words]

  11. An administrative state must have a bureaucracy whose fundamental values must include anonymity, neutrality and commitment. Analyze. [250 Words]

  12. What is co-governance? How is it different from representative bureaucracy? [200 Words]

Union Government and Administration, Civil Service

  1. The proliferation of delegated legislation should not pose a problem in the Indian Parliamentary system of government. Critically comment. (200 Words)

  2. Civil Service neutrality is a fiction. How can any thinking person be neutral? (CSE 2010/20 marks/200 Words)

Comparative Public Administration(CPA), Evolution of Indian Administration

  1. The categorization of ‘Balanced’ and ‘Unbalanced’ polities is nothing but an attempt to vindicate futile academic theorization of Comparative Public Administration. Comment. (200 words)

  2. “The rule of King depends primarily on written orders….”Why did Kautilya favour codification of laws? (CSE 2010/200 words)

Administrative Thought

  1. The ‘Neo’ approach in classical and behavioral theories have brought classist and behaviorist very close to each other. Critically comment.(200 words)

  2. Weber’s theories were essentially an attempt to ensure social acceptance of bureaucracy. Do you agree? Discuss. (200 words)

Significant Issues in Indian Administration, Administrative Reforms Since Independence

  1. Looking at the state of criminal justice administration, we do not need a Human Rights Commission, but a human rights court. Comment.(200 words)

  2. Broadly in which direction have administrative reforms moved since Independence? Has it changed the situation on ground? (150 words)

Techniques of Administrative Improvement

  1. The available techniques of administrative improvements(CPM, PERT) are too ‘mechanical’ and ‘simplistic’ to be applied in the real world of governance. Comment. (150 words)

  2. Examine the role of MGNREGA in improving lower-tier governance in India? (150 words)

  3. Examine the role of MGNREGA in improving lower-tier governance in India? (150 words)

Participative Management (Likert, C.Argyris, D. Mc Gregor)

  1. “The successful management leaders are found in Likert’s ‘System-4’ approach to organizational leadership.” Examine. [CSM 2010/250 Words]

  2. “Commitment to objectives is a function of the rewards associated with their achievement.” Comment [150 Words]

  3. Examine the evolution of conflict management from integration approach of M.P. Follett to remedial approach of participative management. [200 Words]

  4. “The managerial cosmology meaningfully addresses the understanding of manager and his role perceptions.” Explain. [200 Words]

  5. “Organizations are willing to pay high wages and provide adequate seniority if mature adults will behave in a less than mature manner”. Comment. [200 Words]

  6. “Self-actualization is a utopia, without any precise operational indicators”. Comment [200 Words]

  7. Critically evaluate Chris Argyris views on human personality and its impact on the working of organization. [200 Words]

  8. The theory of ‘organizational incompetence’ has two separate and distinct faces. Examine Chris Argyris’ view on this. [CSM 2013/150 Words]

Thinkers and Models

  1. Whereas Downs’ model is largely dependent on a theory of psychological motivation, Niskanen’s model is framed by neo-classical thinking. In the light of the above, discuss the public choice approach to decision-making. [CSM 2011/250 Words]

  2. The Systems Approach is relevant even today for organizational analysis. Discuss how Chester Barnard and David Easton adopted this approach in their respective areas of study.[CSM 2011/250 Words]

  3. “Decisions are not made by ‘organizations’, but by ‘human beings’ behaving as members of organizations”. How do Bernard and Simon conceptualize the relation between decisions of the individual employee and the organizational authority? [CSM 2013/ 250-300 Words]

  4. “Specialization belongs to the natural order. The object of specialization is to produce more and better work with the same effort”.

    1. “Specialized division of labour and the accompanying fragmentation of tasks result in alienation of work”.

    2. Analyse these statements and evaluate the contributions of the respective approaches to administration theory. (200 words)

  5. Structural theory is, by and large, grounded in classical principles of efficiency, effectiveness and productivity. Explain [CSM 2013/300-350 Words]

  6. “The design of the physical structure, the anatomy of the organization came first, and was indeed the principal consideration.”

    1. “An organization is a system of interrelated social behaviors of participants”

    2. Analyse these statements and evaluate the contributions of the respective approaches to administration theory. [CSM 2013/300-350 Words]

  7. What light does Antonio Gramsci‘s critique of Taylorism throw on its socio-psychological underpinnings? [CSM 2012/150-200 Words]

Process and Technique of Decision- Making

  1. ‘Policy judgements comprise reality judgements, value judgements and instrumental judgements’ [Geoffery Vickers]. Elucidate. [150 Words/CSM2012]

  2. “Creativity allows the decision maker to more fully appraise and understand the problem, including seeing problems others can’t see”. Elucidate.[200 Words]

  3. Discuss the importance of ecological factors in decision making.[200 Words]

  4. “The rational model of decision making makes no acknowledgement of cultural differences”. Critically Examine.[200 Words]

Administrative Behaviour-Communication

  1. What is knowledge management in an organization. How is communication crucial for proper knowledge management in an organization? (200 words)

  2. Channels of communication must be definitely known. Comment.[200 Words]

  3. “Non-financial incentives are the psychic rewards or the rewards of enhanced position that can be secured in the work organization”[Dubin]. Elucidate. [200 Words]

Administrative Behaviour-Morale

  1. ‘Job satisfaction is related to organizational effectiveness’. Comment.[200 Words]

Administrative Behaviour-Motivation Theories- Content, Process and Contemporary

  1. ‘Man’s motives… in different subparts of the same organization may be different’ [Edges Schein]. Discuss. [150 Words/CSM2012]

  2. “Inspite of the criticism on two-factor theory it is unquestionable that herzberg’s contribution to work motivation is substantial.” Comment. [200 Words]

Administrative Behaviour- Theories of Leadership – Traditional and Modern

  1. ‘Leaders do the right things, manager do them rightly.’[Bennis]. Comment. [200 Words/CSM2008]

  2. Leadership is a socially constructed organizational reality. Explain. [200 Words]

Organizations – Theories-Systems, Contingency

  1. ‘The essence, of the contingency theory paradigm is that organizational effectiveness results from fitting characteristics of the organization, such as its structure, to contingencies that reflect the situation of the organization.’ Give your reason for the statement.[CSM 2012/250 Words]

  2. ‘The essence, of the contingency theory paradigm is that organizational effectiveness results from fitting characteristics of the organization, such as its structure, to contingencies that reflect the situation of the organization.’

In the light of your discussion on above, also show where and how this ‘fitting’ differs from ‘coping’ with ‘stress’ from environment emphasized by the systems theory of organization.[CSM 2012/250 Words]

  1. Structural theory is, by and large, grounded in classical principles of efficiency, effectiveness & productivity. Explain. [CSM 2013/250 Words]

  2. Systems view of organization provides us with macro paradigm for the study of organization. Comment. [200 Words]

  3. Technology and environment are two potent forces of organizational change. [300 Words]

  4. Do you think that open and closed model are two faces of the same coin? Elucidate.[200 Words]

Organizations – Structure and Forms

  1. “A variety of different organizational arrangements can be used to provide different public goods & services”. Explain the theory underlying this proposition and its potential contribution.[CSM 2013/200 Words]

  2. “In order to make full use of the opportunities provided by globalization, developing countries need, among other things, to reinvest in their public sector and enhance their capacity for policy analysis, formulation and implementation.” Discuss.[300 Words]

  3. What are the advantages of Boards? Give a short note on their success or failure in Indian administration paradigm. [300 Words]

  4. How do you rate the ministerial control over autonomy in the case of Public sector enterprises? Substantiate.[200 Words]

  5. Offer your opinion on disinvestment of public enterprises. Why has the disinvestment bandwagon slowed down in recent years, in India? Do you think it’s a welcome phenomenon.[200 Words]

Organizations –Ad Hoc and Advisory Bodies

  1. What is the utility of Ad hoc bodies? Explain with special reference to the functioning of Ad hoc committees in Indian parliament. [250 Words]

  2. Recently it has been claimed that NAC wields more influence in policy making than planning commission. Do you think this is a healthy precedent? Explain by emphasizing on the working of advisory bodies in an organization.[250 Words]

Organizations –Regulatory Authorities

  1. Elucidate the need of a separate department of Regulatory affairs in Indian administrative set-up.[200 Words]

  2. Evaluate the working of regulatory authorities in Indian administration. [300 words]

Organizations –Public Private Partnerships

  1. The idea of Public-Private partnership was introduced with great pomp and show. Why did it fail to provide the desired results? Also suggest some measures which could improve the performance of this administrative vehicle.[250 Words]

Administrative Tribunals

  1. ‘The development of administrative law in a welfare state has made administrative tribunals a necessity.’ Comment. [200 Words]

Historical and Sociological Factors Affecting Administrative Systems

  1. “Truly comparative administration studies are empirical, nomothetic & ecological.”(Riggs)

In this perspective, examine the current status of comparative public administration. [CSM 2008/250 Words]

  1. “Not to be comparative is to be naively parochial” (Riggs). Comment [CSM 2007/200 Words]

  2. The development administration approach to CPA tends to validate a Manichean view of administrative system. Comment [150 Words]

Administrative and Politics in Different Countries

  1. “No science of public administration is possible unless there is a body of comparative studies from which it may be possible to discover principles and generalities that transcend national boundaries and peculiar historical experiences.” Discuss [CSM 2005/200 Words]

Current Status of Comparative Public Administration

  1. “Comparative Public administration both resembles and differs from modern organization theory.” Elaborate. [CSM 2013/150 Words]

  2. Comment on the reasons why universal theory remains elusive in comparative public administration. [CSM 2012/250 Words]

Ecology and Administration

  1. “…in most cases… newly independent states, of the nations of Africa, Asia and latin America, despite their differences… are in transition.”(Ferrel Heady). What common features are indicative of characteristics of their administrative patterns(cultures)? [CSM 2013/200 Words]

  2. “Comparative public administration” is the “quest for patterns and regularities in administrative action & behavior”. Elaborate. [200 Words]

Development Dynamics: Concept of Development

  1. “The concept of development is multi-dimensional and ever-expanding”. Explain.[CSM 2010/200 Words]

  2. Which of the model in development administration is/are characterized by ‘selectivism’, ‘Attainment’ and ‘Poly-functionalism’? Describe the corresponding theoretical roots and attributes.[CSM 2009/300 Words]

  3. “Development administration is characterized by its purpose, its loyalties and its attitudes. ”Elaborate.[250 Words]

  4. The immediate contribution of development administration is its exposure of the administrative obstacles to the planning and implementation of development. Comment.[150 Words]

Development Dynamics: Changing Profile of Development Administration

  1. The paradigm shift from the growth-centric approach to people-centric one needs corresponding institutional reshaping that is hard to bring about at one stroke. Elaborate. [250 Words]

  2. “For those who use the euphemism of ‘shared power’ for participation, the appropriate literature for guidance in practical politics, not organization and management”. Elaborate. [250 Words]

  3. “Strong state and strong civil society are the need to develop both participatory democracy and responsive government as mutually reinforcing and supportive.”

Bring out the myths and realities associated with public participation.[CSM 2013/250 Words]

  1. “To talk about regulatory framework is to talk about governance.” Analyse the statement in the context of Public-private partnerships and identify the elements of regulation.[CSM 2013/200 Words]

  2. Development is above all else a question of human values. Comment[150 Words]

Development Dynamics: ‘Antidevelopment Thesis’

  1. The Anti-development approach attempts to overcome the inequality in perception and definition of development by opening up spaces for non-western peoples and their concerns. Comment [200 Words]

  2. ‘The anti-development’ thesis… reduces development to an idea without history, impervious to change’, but ‘fails to take account of the fact for its faults development could be empowering.’ Discuss.[CSM 2012/150 Words]

Development Dynamics: Bureaucracy and Development

  1. Bureaucracy has a two-way relationship with development. Comment[200 Words]

  2. What according to you are the three biggest obstacles which is presented by bureaucracy in the path of development? Elaborate.[300 Words]

  3. Attaining optimum regulation is a challenging task, as a balance has to be achieved between individual’s freedom and society’s interest. Explain.[200 words]

Development Dynamics: Strong State Versus the Market

  1. “The Market has become the new icon of developmentalism.” Comment. [CSM 2010/200 Words]

  2. “… the balanced administrative state has been replaced by the corporate-coercive state.” Comment. [200 Words]

Development Dynamics: Impact of Liberalization on Administration in Developing Countries

  1. Indicate the milestones in the story of development from the Nehruvian Model to Liberalization Model.[CSM 2011/250 Words]

  2. We need to create a balance between the state, market and civil society to ensure good governance.[300 Words]

  3. ‘The idea of civil society is intrinsically linked to liberal democratic discourse esposing plurality of social views’. Comment.[200 Words]

Development Dynamics: Women and Development: The Self-Help Group Movement

  1. Given the importance of issue of sex equality in development do you think the self-help group movement adequately addresses absence of women in the former mainstream development agenda? [CSM 2012/250 Words]

  2. “Self-Help Gropus (SHGs) enables women to realize their full potential in some spheres of life.”

“SHGs are providing avenues of political mobilization.”

Examine the implication these two statements and assess the potential of SHgs for development. [300 Words]

  1. Why has the performance of SHGs been uneven in different states of India? Elaborate some successful models of SHGs in India.[300 Words]

Philosophical and Constitutional Framework of Government: Salient Features and Value Premises; Constitutionalism

  1. “The liberal-democratic ideology of the West influenced the shaping of value premises of the Indian Constitution.” Discuss. [250 Words/CSM 2013]

  2. “India at its independence established an electoral democracy in conditions of relative social ‘backwardness’, accentuating the extent of its apparent ‘democratic exceptionalism’.” Comment.[250 Words]

  3. “Value of Indian administration must be rooted in the preamble of the Indian constitution.” Discuss[CSM 2009/250 Words]

  4. Analyze the following statements from D D Basu. The preamble to our Constitution serves, two purposes:

    1. it indicates the source from which the constitution derives its authority;

    2. it also states the objects which constitution seeks to establish and promote.

In the light of above statement elaborate the importance of preamble in the working of our constitution. [250 Words]

Philosophical and Constitutional Framework of Government: POLITICAL CULTURE

  1. Analyze the following statement by Pratap Bhanu Mehta,

    1. “With political parties serving as vehicles of Individual ambition rather than ideological or programmatic goals, the resulting political promiscuity has led to a landscape in which Indian political parties form a constantly shifting kaleidoscope of fission and fusion”

    2. Do you think that this phenomenon, of political parties ultimately becoming ‘vehicles of Individual ambition’ is unique to Indian political culture or an inherent disadvantage of multi-party democracy? (200 words)

  2. Pressure group politics is sometimes seen as the informal face of politics. With regards to the above, assess the structure and functioning of pressure groups in India. [CSM {GS-II} 2013/200 Words]

  3. The role of legislators has diminished over the years and as a result healthy constructive debates on policy issues are not usually witnessed. How far can this be attributed to the anti-defection law which was legislated but with a different intention? [CSM {GS-II} 2013/200 Words]

  4. Analyze the following two contradicting statements,

    1. “Energies are dissipated in managing the coalition itself rather than in governing more broadly and, as a result, both the pace and the quality of reform suffer”

    2. “… stability [by a majority government] itself can simply result in the persistence of poor policies.”

Considering the above statements comment on the political culture of Indian democracy emphasizing on the link between stability and growth. (200 words)

Philosophical and Constitutional Framework of Government: BUREAUCRACY and DEMOCRACY

  1. Explain with appropriate illustrations the interface between ‘political culture and bureaucratic culture’ in contemporary India. [200 Words]

  2. “The weakest aspect of Indian administration is grievance Redressal machinery.” Discuss [200 Words]

  3. “There is a constant and continuous collision between bureaucratic values and democratic values which adversely affects development.” In the light of this statement examine the role of bureaucracy in development. [CSM 2008/300 Words]

  4. “Over dependence on bureaucracy for bringing about socio-economic development in India has proved to be dysfunctional.” Comment. [CSM 2011/200 Words]

  5. Analyze the following two statements,

    1. “The more developmental an administrative system becomes, the greater the likelihood that it would have more developmental effects”

    2. “The thrust of development administration failed to energize the Indian bureaucracy.”

In the light of above statements analyze the role of Indian bureaucracy in achieving development goals. [CSM 2010/300 Words]