New journal delves into behavioural approaches for public administration

By The Mandarin

Tuesday February 27, 2018

It’s all the rage for governments to have a behavioural insights/economics research unit these days — at least for those jurisdictions with the budget to spare like New South Wales. But whether you’re on a shoestring or not, there’s so much behavioural science already being researched around the world.

One new journal on the block is the Journal of Behavioral Public Administration. Launching its first issue this week, it’s pitched as an open-access (read: free online), international, peer-reviewed and multidisciplinary journal with a distinct focus on behavioural science research and its relevance to public administration, broadly defined.

The editors note that science is being increasingly used to reshape theory, redesign public services and improve administrative practice. Meanwhile, governments are increasingly applying behavioural insights to improve administrative work practices.

“We envision JBPA as a two-way street at the intersection of the behavioral sciences and public administration open to any behavioral scientist with an interest in studying human behavior in public administration.”

For it’s inaugural issue. the JBPA covers research papers on nudging taxpayers, the effects of ‘bureaucracy bashing’, and improving employee feedback. It also includes opinions on the schism between micro and macro public administration, and drawing lessons from psychology.

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