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When selecting your question please reflect on following; how public administrators work, what is important in designing goals and implementing them, and what is essential to one’s character to be effective at managing in the public administration setting.  At least two typed written pages.




Book reference ;

Denhardt, R. B., Denhardt, J. V., & Blanc, T. A. (2014). Public administration: An action orientation. Wadsworth,enGage Learning.


1.  What is the difference between ethics and morality? What does ethnical deliberation entail? What type of policy would you design to reduce conflicts of interest?

Fundamental of Public Administration PPA 101




  • Understanding the importance of ethics to public administrators
  • Learning how to address an ethical dilemma
  • Understanding the issues of administrative responsibility
  • Exploring the variety of issues that present ethical issues to administrators
  • Learning how to create an ethical climate in an agency

Moral Philosphy

  • How do we determine what is right and wrong given a particular set of circumstances
  • Who will benefit, who will it harm?
  • Greatest benefit least cost
  • Lastly universal rule of conduct

Moral Psychology

  • Kohlberg 3 levels of moral development
  • We will review in a bit

Moral Action

  • Do know what is right is not enough
  • How do you act
  • What is the character of the individual

Ethnics & Morality

Ethics is how we make sense through a systematic use of reason to make sense of our individual or social moral experience in such a way to determine the rules which out to govern human conduct not just knowing the right answer but be willing to do what is right

Morality is concerned with those practices & activities that are considered right or wrong…moral action is action that is consistent with the groups commitments to right & wrong

Limits of Administrative Discretion

  • How does the PA manage discretion in line with the will of the people; from Constitution, laws, preference by citizens
  • Limits on PA’s discretion can ensure that they are following what the legislators intended

Exploring Concepts; Today’s Leadership Challenge

  • P. 261

Avenues for Public Participation

  • Advisory boards
  • Networks
  • Coalitions

Ethnical Deliberation

  • Ethical (or moral) relativism is the belief that actions that are immoral in some places or circumstances are moral in others and that one can make moral judgments by only taking into account the context in which the action occurs
  • Ethnical deliberation; clarify the facts, agree on basic principles analyze the arguments, make a decision and act on it

Two Approaches Commonly Used in Moral Philosophy

  • Who will benefit who will suffer from the different actions focusing on the consequences of the action (utilitarian)
  • Moral principle or rule against which to measure aspects of a particular case one looks at universal rules of conduct (deontology)

3 Levels of Moral Development Devised by Psychologist Lawrence Kohlberg

  • Pre-conventional- begins in childhood, right and wrong based on avoiding punishment
  • Conventional- adults conform based on conformity to various standards/ family, group, nation..1st stage meeting expectations of others 2nd stage “law & order” orientation good citizen
  • Post conventional- highest level of moral development; justice, equality, respect for individual dignity. One understands why the principal should be supported and makes a choice to live by that standard

Ethnics Virtue

Ethnical decision making, we become just by doing just acts, Aristotle says that we develop virtue in the same way we develop other skills by practicing

Transparency in Goverment

  • Website
  • Emails
  • Town Hall discussions

Obama’s Elements of Open Government

  • Transparency
  • Public participation
  • Collaboration
  • Excerpts from his memo on first day in office on p. 265

The Ethics of Privatization

  • Increase services regardless of budget
  • Due to budget reduce services

Conflict Between Efficiency and Responsiveness

  • Many of the problems public administrators face have to do with the balance between efficiency & responsiveness; operate efficiently yet be responsive to administrative supervisors
  • Politics vs. administration
  • Bureaucracy vs. democracy

Administrators Discretion with Regards to Efficiency and Responsiveness

  • Subjective responsibility- depending on nature of individual
  • Representative bureaucracy- employees reflect demographics characteristics of the population will operate more in line with those who they reflect

Ethnical Problems Individuals Who Work in Public Organizations Encounter and How They Can Deal with Them Properly

  • Interacting with elected officials- you should be accountable but must balance the following orders might not be in the best interest of public good
  • Following orders- many follow orders afraid of consequences
  • Conflicts of interest- standards of conduct have been designed to reduce the possibility; issues with gifts from outside sources, impartiality in performing official duties, misuse of position
  • Whistle blowing- disclosure of problem in public organizations (p.273 bottom list)

Take Action: 10 Steps for Potential Whistle Blowers

  • P.274

Prohibitions of Political Activities: The Hatch Act

Endorsing partisan candidates

Listing or raising money for PAC

Participating in partisan voter registration

Distributing campaign material

Serving as a delegate to a political convention

Making campaign speeches

Seeking public office in partisan elections

Establishing an Ethnical Climate: Examples of Managing Ethnics (p.278)

  • Compliance & integrity training & counseling
  • Briefings on common ethnical problems
  • Designate senior managers for integrity issues
  • Consider ethnical values & character at recruitment
  • Publicize positive noteworthy role models

James Svara Ethics Triangle

  • Based partly on the work of Charles Garofalo and Dean Geuras, Svara posits a unified approach to ethics—the “Ethics Triangle.” The three points of the Svara’s triangle are “(1) Principle (justice, fairness and equity); (2) Consequences (greatest good); (3) Character (virtue/intuition).” The final ingredient Svara depicts is the center of the triangle—the concept of duty. This is important for public administrators since duty (serving the public) is the core of what we do.

Group Discussion

  • Identify several short cases from the local newspaper. (There are many cases available from online sources as well.) Divide students into groups of 3 to 4; give each group a different case. Have each group analyze its case from each aspect of Svara’s ethics triangle—what is the duty of the public administrator involved; what are the ethical considerations from the standpoint of virtue, principle, and consequences; and what should the administrator involved have done? Following the groups discussions, have each group presents its findings to the class


  • Ethnics and morality are complex and challenging concepts
  • Absolutely necessary to understand and master for those in public administration