Mapping the Swiss Public Administration: Challenges and First Research Steps
In the present paper, we argue that the existing data collections fail to map specific features of modern public administration in Switzerland, namely new modes of governance with hybrid state structures. After presenting the Swiss federal administration in a nutshell, we discuss the challenge of mapping hybrid state structures based on different studies focusing on four different aspects: first, quasi-state bodies; second, joined up government; third, emerging new institutions for problems not adequately captured by existing political geography, most prominently seen in the case of functional urban regions; and fourth, new modes of governance with co-production of public goods by state and non-state actors. We then present newer studies and ongoing research (which could be coupled with the mapping of public administration in Switzerland), namely the "agenda setting"-project, research on independent regulatory bodies and, finally, the courts' impact on public administration. In further conceptual work, we may discuss in more depth how the challenge of new modes of governance and cooperative government can be addressed by focusing on the transformation of state structures rather than by adopting a static view.
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