Chapter 14: The Bureaucracy (Departments of Bureaucracy (Executive Office…
Chapter 14: The Bureaucracy
The Characteristics of Bureaucracy
The Weberian Model of Bureaucracy
Division of labor. In a bureaucracy, work is divided according to task specialization.
Hierarchy. In a bureaucracy, there is a clear vertical chain of command, and authority flows downward from superiors to subordinate employees.
Formal rules. Bureaucracies operate according to standardized operating procedures.
Maintenance of files and records. Bureaucracies record their actions and keep the records.
Professionalization. Bureaucrats are appointed on the basis of their qualifications, and government bureaucracies develop a career civil service.
A system of governing in which political positions and benefits are given to the friends of the winner.
A system of governing in which jobs are given based on relevant technical expertise and the ability to perform.
The idea that agencies should make decisions based on expertise rather than political considerations.
The Concept of Bureaucracy
The term used to refer to the agencies of the federal government. It also refers to an organizational framework and has negative connotations.
Departments of Bureaucracy
Executive Office of the President (EOP)
The organizational structure in the executive branch that houses the president’s most influential advisors and agencies. The most important include the White House Office, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the National Security Council, and the Council of Economic Advisers.
The 15 largest and most influential agencies of the federal bureaucracy.
Federal agencies that are not part of the cabinet-level executive departments.
Regulatory Agencies and Comissions
Agencies that are independent of cabinet departments and are created by Congress to monitor and regulate specific areas of economic activity.
The reduction or elimination of government rules and regulations that interfere with the efficient operation of market forces.
Federally established businesses that are narrow in focus and are in part self-supporting.
Temporary or permanent organizations created to provide information and technical expertise to the bureaucracy.
The Power of Bureaucracy
A statement of the bureaucracy that interprets the law or prescribes a specific action. These rules have the force of law.
The process in which the bureaucracy decides what the laws passed by Congress mean and how they should be carried out.
The process of determining whether a law or rule established by the bureaucracy has been broken.
A term used to refer to the interdependent relationship among the bureaucracy, interest groups, and congressional committees.
Networks of groups with an interest in a specific policy issue or area.
Controlling the Bureaucracy
Herbert Simon’s theory that humans are not utility maximizers as suggested in classical rational choice models. Humans satisfice (see satisficing) rather than maximize.
Considering possible alternatives until finding one that is good enough to solve the problem at hand even though it might not be the “best” possible solution.
The idea that the bureaucracy is controlled through the oversight of elected officials, who are chosen by the people, thus giving the populace control over the bureaucracy.
Police Patrol Oversight
The active oversight of the bureaucracy by elected officials to make sure that the bureaucracy is acting according to the wishes of the people.
Fire Alarm Oversight
Oversight that becomes active only when there is evidence of bureaucratic wrongdoing.
A term used to describe when an agency seems to operate for the benefit of those whom it is supposed to regulate.
Laws intended to keep the bureaucracy accountable to the people by requiring that agency meetings be open to the public.
Influencing the Bureaucracy
A measure that gives Congress the ability to reject an action or decision of the bureaucracy.
A power of the president that enables him or her to control the bureaucracy by selecting the people who will head its agencies.
The limited ability of the president to not spend money appropriated by Congress.
Directives of the president that have the same weight as law and are not voted on by Congress.
The intention of Congress when it passes laws.
Standards of Due Process
The procedural guarantees provided to ensure fair treatment and constitutional rights.
Hiring a private organization to deliver a public program or service.
A model explaining the relationship between Congress and the bureaucracy, which states that the relationship is similar to that between an employer who seeks to have work done (the principal) and an employee who does the work (the agent).
A principal’s lack of information about the abilities of an agent.
A principal’s lack of information about the effort of an agent.