- the oxford handbooks of American Politics
- List of Figures
- List of Tables
- List of Abbreviations
- About the Contributors
- A Heritage Made Our Own
- Historical Institutionalism, Political Development, and the Study of American Bureaucracy
- The “First New Federalism” and the Development of the Administrative State, 1883–1929
- A Gendered Legacy?: The Progressive Reform Era Revisited
- Reevaluating Executive‐Centered Public Administrative Theory
- Metaphors and the Development of American Bureaucracy
- Herbert Hoover's Revenge: Politics, Policy, and Administrative Reform Movements
- Agency Theory and the Bureaucracy
- Agency Design and Evolution
- Goal Ambiguity and the Study of American Bureaucracy
- Street‐Level Bureaucracy Theory
- The Promises and Paradoxes of Performance‐Based Bureaucracy
- Leading Through Cultural Change
- Postmodernism, Bureaucracy, and Democracy
- Myths, Markets, and the <i>Visible Hand</i> of American Bureaucracy
- Networking in the Shadow of Bureaucracy
- The Promises, Performance, and Pitfalls of Government Contracting
- Reluctant Partners?: Nonprofit Collaboration, Social Entrepreneurship, and Leveraged Volunteerism
- Policy Tools, Mandates, and Intergovernmental Relations
- Promises, Perils, and Performance of Netcentric Bureaucracy
- Multilevel Methods in the Study of Bureaucracy
- Legislative Delegation of Authority to Bureaucratic Agencies
- “Presidentializing” the Bureaucracy
- Bureaucracy, Democracy, and Judicial Review
- Interest Groups, Rulemaking, and American Bureaucracy
- Policymaking, Bureaucratic Discretion, and Overhead Democracy
- Choice‐Theoretic Approaches to Bureaucratic Structure
- Has Governance Eclipsed Government?
- Revitalizing Human Resources Management
- Representative Bureaucracy
- Innovations in Budgeting and Financial Management
- The Prospects for Revitalizing Ethics in a New Governance Era
- Experimental Methods, Agency Incentives, and the Study of Bureaucratic Behavior
- Name Index
- Subject Index
Abstract and Keywords
This article first summarizes the foundational works in Street Level Bureaucracy Theory (SLBT) written in the late 1970s and early 1980s by Lipsky and his colleagues. Key characteristics are highlighted related to the work situation, characteristics that offer a sense for the bases of organizational and policymaking power posited by early street-level bureaucracy theorists. The article then describes the developments, extensions, and elaborations of SLBT that have occurred over the past thirty years. Finally, several current issues and trends in research on SLBT that appear most challenging and profitable to pursue in future research are discussed. Future research needs to focus more directly on how discretion is nested within rule-based systems. Street-level bureaucrats are the ‘ultimate policymakers’ in two senses: they are the final or last policymakers and they have the greatest influence.
Steven Maynard‐Moody is Director of the Institute for Policy & Social Research and Professor of Public Administration at the University of Kansas.
Shannon Portillo is Assistant Professor in the Administration of Justice and Women and Gender Studies departments at George Mason University.
Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.
If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.