Public Adminstration -Dichotomy

The Politics-Administration Dichotomy is a theory that constructs the boundaries of public administration and asserts the normative relationship between elected officials and administrators in a democratic society.[1] The phrase Politics-Administration Dichotomy itself does not appear to have a known inventor, even after exhaustive research, the combination of words that make up the phrase was first found in Public Administration literature from the 1940s with no clear originator.
Woodrow Wilson is credited with the Politics-Administration Dichotomy via his theories on Public Administration in his 1887 essay, "The Study of Administration". Wilson came up with a theory that politics and administration are inherently different and should be approached as such Wilson wrote in his essay in regards to Public Administration: “The field of administration is a field of business. It is removed from the hurry and strife of politics.... Administration lies outside the proper sphere of politics. Administrative questions are not political questions. Although politics sets the tasks for administration, it should not be suffered to manipulate its offices.”[4] With these words, Wilson started a debate that has been going on for decades and continues to this day. The Politics-Administration Dichotomy is an important concept in the field of public administration and shows no signs of going away because it deals with the policy-makers role as an administrator and the balancing act that is the relationship between politics and administration.[5] This essay is considered to be the first source to be analyzed and studied in the Public Administration field.[6] Wilson was primarily influenced by Richard Ely and Herbert Adams who taught at Johns Hopkins University.