Governments and bureaucracies

Wolfgang C. Müller

This chapter looks at decision-making modes of governments and their capacities to govern. Special attention is given to the relationship between the political and administrative parts of government. The chapter begins by addressing definitions and distinguishing what constitutes government under different regimes. The chapter presents different modes of government that reflect the internal balance of power: presidential, cabinet, prime ministerial, and ministerial government. Then it addresses the autonomy of government, in particular from political parties and the permanent bureaucracy. Next, the chapter discusses the political capacity of governments, the relevance of unified vs divided government, majority vs minority government, and single-party vs coalition government. Finally, the chapter highlights the bureaucratic capacities of government, addressing issues such as classic bureaucracy, the politicization of bureaucracies, and the New Public Management.

Department of Government
Publication date
Peer reviewed
Austrian Fields of Science 2012
506014 Comparative politics
Portal url