Complexity theory and public management

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialPopular

130 Citations (Scopus)


The idea that decision-making processes and management in public policy and public administration are complex has entered the minds of practitioners and scholars in public administration. Insights from theories on complexity, however, have hardly been used in public administration and management. In other social sciences, like economics for instance, an evolutionary approach has received far more attention. The question whether such a complexity theory approach could help to increase our understanding of public management phenomena is an intriguing one. In this volume the reader will find a selection of articles on public management using insights from the complexity theory. Before we present the seven articles, which all deal with notions from the complexity theory and apply them to phenomena in the public sector, we will briefly introduce some basic ideas concerning this theory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-297
Number of pages11
JournalPublic Management Review
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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