Politics, Policy and Public Administration in Theory and Practice

Politics, Policy and Public Administration in Theory and Practice

Essays in Honour of Professor John Wanna

Edited by: Andrew Podger orcid, Michael de Percy orcid, Sam Vincent

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This festschrift celebrates the extensive contribution John Wanna has made to the research and practice of politics, policy and public administration.

It includes both personal acknowledgements of his work and substantial essays on the issues that he focused most closely upon during his academic career: budgeting and financial management, politics, and public policy and administration.

The essays address contemporary developments in public sector financial management in Australia and overseas, changing political processes in Queensland and the Commonwealth, and public governance and administration reform trajectories in Australia and internationally, including in China.

A common theme is the importance of linking research to practice, reflecting John Wanna’s own style and contribution. Essays include exploration of the interface between academia and practice, including from the perspective of practitioners.

The authors of the essays in this volume include eminent Australian and international scholars of public administration, experienced public service practitioners and younger scholars influenced by John Wanna.


ISBN (print):
ISBN (online):
Publication date:
Jun 2021
ANU Press
Australia and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG)
The Australia and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG)
Social Sciences: Politics & International Studies, Social Policy & Administration

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Politics, Policy and Public Administration in Theory and Practice »

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Section 1: Budgeting and financial management

  1. Reflections on John Wanna’s contributions to theory and practice (PDF, 0.2MB)Allen Schick doi
  2. Australian budgeting and beyond: Exploring John Wanna’s scholarly surplus (PDF, 0.2MB)Evert Lindquist doi
  3. Performance management for success: Public sector organisations in Australia and the Philippines (PDF, 1.1MB)Lewis Hawke doi
  4. A system in adjustment: Australia’s evolving public budget management system (PDF, 0.2MB)Stein Helgeby doi
  5. Contradictions in implementing performance management (PDF, 0.3MB)John Halligan doi

Section 2: Politics

  1. Cabinet government: The least bad system of government? (PDF, 0.2MB)Patrick Weller doi
  2. ‘A long revolution’: The historical coverage of Queensland politics and government (PDF, 0.3MB)Chris Salisbury doi
  3. Policymaking, party executives and parliamentary policy actors (PDF, 0.2MB)Marija Taflaga doi
  4. Models of government–business relations: Industry policy preferences versus pragmatism (PDF, 0.3MB)Michael de Percy doi

Section 3: Public policy and administration

  1. Beyond new public governance (PDF, 0.3MB)R. A. W. Rhodes doi
  2. Chinese public administration developments and prospects: An Australian (and Hong Kong) perspective (PDF, 0.3MB)Andrew Podger and Hon Chan doi
  3. Coming to terms with the state (PDF, 0.3MB)Jim Jose doi

Section 4: Working with practitioners

  1. Engaging with government: A confessional tale (PDF, 0.1MB)Paul ’t Hart doi
  2. Neoliberalism? That’s not how practitioners view public sector reform (PDF, 0.3MB)Peter Shergold and Andrew Podger doi
  3. Of ‘trifles’ and ‘manhole covers’: The practitioner–academic interface (PDF, 0.2MB)Isi Unikowski doi


‘Given attention to the contexts surrounding Wanna’s work, the reader is treated to a walk-through of a scholarly career, which continues to have great impact.

Wanna’s reach is impressive, and it is a gift to be able to meet, virtually, someone with clear influence on the path of his students and colleagues. While centered on Australian politics and public administration, there is value in the insights here, beyond national borders. 

In the festschrift, readers are offered a view of a scholar that has understood the importance of practical matters in government, from administrative issues to political challenges, and insisted on connecting the considerable resources of academia to practitioner needs, evidencing competence.’

— C.L. Atkinson (2021), ‘Theme-Based Book Review: Competence’. Public Organization Review.

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