Quotation Ebinger, Falk, Veit, Sylvia. 2019. Same same but different? Administrative Roles and Politicization in Ministerial Bureaucracies. European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) General Conference, Wrocław, Polen, 04.09.-07-09.




This paper investigates variances in role perceptions and functional politicization of senior civil servants (SCS) dependent on their actual working tasks. Three types of SCS in government departmentswith a different task focusare distinguished: strategists, policy specialists, and administrators.The empirical basis of the paper is a survey study on SCS conducted at federal level in Germany in 2017. Data cover a full inventory of the four highest hierarchical ranks in federal ministries (N=607).Role perceptions are measured by asking the SCS in how far they agree with ten different role models first developed in the Comparative Elite Studies from the 1970ies and 1980ies (Aberbach, Rockman, & Putnam, 1981; Derlien, 2003; Mayntz & Derlien, 1989). We differentiate these role models in active and reactive role models. Functional politicization is measured through an index first developed by Schwanke and Ebinger(2006)based on three different survey questions. The analyses reveal a mixed picture with regard to role perceptions. While there are striking similarities between the three groups with regard to some role images (e.g., thewide rejection of the role image as agent for specific organized interestsand the broad identification with the role image as an expert with specific problem-solving capacities), there are remarkable differences concerning some others. In particular, the legalist roleis considerably more widespread and the self-perception as an advocate of broader societal interests, as implementer of political goalsand as initiator of new projects and problem solutionsareless widespread among administratorsthan in the two other groups. Summing up the different role models in two indices (reactive role models,active role models), our analyses reveal that with regard to reactive role models, the group differences are small and not significant. The identification with


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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Paper presented at an academic conference or symposium
Language English
Title Same same but different? Administrative Roles and Politicization in Ministerial Bureaucracies.
Event European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) General Conference
Year 2019
Date 04.09.-07-09.
Country Poland
Location Wrocław
URL https://ecpr.eu/Filestore/PaperProposal/698115d8-7360-4ccd-8d54-fbe0d9654c06.pdf


Ebinger, Falk (Former researcher)
Veit, Sylvia (Universität Kassel, Germany)
Institute for Public Management and Governance IN (Details)
Research areas (ÖSTAT Classification 'Statistik Austria')
5118 Political science (Details)
5324 Organizational research (Details)
5351 Public economy (Details)
5963 Evaluation research (Details)
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