Debate | StepTalks
The moral life of street-level bureaucrats
- Bernardo Zacka
- 20 February 2018
- StepTalks: science at the Spanish Steps
- Wijnhaven Building
2511 DP The Hague
- Spanish Steps
When citizens interact with the state, they encounter street-level bureaucrats—the welfare workers, police officers, counselors and educators responsible for implementing public policy and enforcing the law. By combining political theory with ethnographic fieldwork, I aim to show that street-level bureaucrats are caught in a troubling predicament. The proper implementation of public policy depends on their capacity to act as sensible moral agents, yet they must operate in a bureaucratic environment that tends to truncate that very moral agency.
Bernardo Zacka is a junior research fellow in political theory at Christ’s College, Cambridge, and will start as an assistant professor of political science at MIT in fall 2018.
The Public Ethics Talks
The Public Ethics Talks series that will present cutting-edge work in ethics, moral philosophy, political theory and the normative theory of law, as applied to the morality of national and international public policy, government and governance matters, and public organizations and management practice. The talks are open to students, academics, government professionals, civil servants, and interested members of the public.
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