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Aux origines des politiques de réforme administrative sous la Vème République : La construction du 'souci de soi de l'État'

Abstract : Administrative reform under the Fifth Republic : the construction of the State’s “care of itself” In France, as in most Western countries, administrative reform policies have increased in the past forty years and are often described as adaptation policies, designed to remedy objective dysfunctions in the state system. This perception raises several methodological problems, which must be avoided at all cost : reification of the state, disregard for the configuration of institutional power relations networks which make “administrative reform” possible, neglect of political discourse and recurring practices, despite their importance in the contemporary art of governing. In a modern state, exercising power means not only governing society but also governing the state itself, through the accumulation and practical use of the knowledge and skills, ways and means of governing an administration. In this framework, administrative reform policies crystallize the state’s “care of itself”. The institutionalizing of “government policy” pertaining to the government, parallel to the growth of a field of government science which studies the organization and functioning of the administration, can be explained by two factors : the interplay of institutions and contextual elements that lead to a questioning of administrative rationale, and the development of a varied range of disciplines for which the administration has gradually become a “problem to be solved”, a “study challenge”, and at the same time, a “target of government intervention”. [First paragraph]
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Philippe Bezes. Aux origines des politiques de réforme administrative sous la Vème République : La construction du 'souci de soi de l'État'. Revue française d'administration publique, ENA, 2002, 2 (102), pp.307 - 325. ⟨10.3917/rfap.102.0307⟩. ⟨hal-03606209⟩



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