Current research project: create the conceptual architecture of political management

Ministers, Chief Executives, Chief of Staffs, Campaign Managers and Party Presidents preside over big budgets, staff and organisations, but they are never trained properly. Politicians and staffers are left to learn through working/volunteering in parties first or on the job. Yes they might have taken an MBA or done a short course on leadership but that training uses research on companies. Government serves everyone in society not a specific market, and is about social good not profit. We need proper research on managing politics. Existing literature with political management in their title don’t use management concepts; are about local government; or economics.

Begun in 2016, this project has created the conceptual architecture to define what political management is and involves. This  connects business management concepts with political research, adapting theories to suit the political environment, much as I did with my first work on market-oriented political parties.

Research monograph Political Management: the core principles of managing government, parties and campaigns 

This book is currently being finalised for publication in 2020.  This book will lay the conceptual foundation for an emerging field; establish the value of political management, and enable and stimulate future research in political management. It lays out the core tools to manage government, campaigns and parties. The first book to combine management concepts with politics and government, tt explains and illustrates what Political Planning, Political HR, Political Organising, Political Leadership and Political Reviewing involves in a political and government setting.  The book provides core theory in each area and presents an overall model of the 4 Ds of Political Management – Deliberating, Designing, Doing and Dancing. Political management is more of a dance than a march and involves the unseen and the informal, and requiring artful and tactful leadership to draw on and extend diverse sources of power. Even presidents and prime ministers do not get enough formal authority to control the myriad of practitioners, players, processes and policies involved in 21st century government. Political practitioners in campaign teams, parties, government departments and political offices need political management tools to utilise the resources they have available and overcome the multitude of obstacles in political reality. Whether they want to recruit more members, get appointed, win selection as a candidate, win an election, get into government, run a department more effectively, or, ultimately change policy and thus the world, it is not enough to just have a good candidate, party, government or policy. Policy – and any other political goal – needs good political management.

 

Work completed so far (reverse order)

 

The benefits of the project

This project will scope the field and identify potential best practice in government and politics for further empirical research which can inform future training. Best practice theories will help politicians and political staffer get the most out of limited resources and represent and deliver for us more effectively.