Selznick’s Leadership in Administration, Exploring Institutional Character and Commitment, Is Digitally Remastered

Adding a substantive introduction by Robert Rosen, Philip Selznick’s great book Leadership in Administration – it practically invented the genre of executive leadership studies and is the lively response to the “rationalist” approach to organizations — has been re-released in ebook formats.

Foundational study of how institutions work and how leadership promotes them, often cited in many fields and assigned to classes in a variety of departments — including sociology and business, public administration, and executive training in management and military leadership — this book jumpstarted modernĀ  institutional-leadership programs. Leadership in Administration is still recognized as an engaging and accessible presentation of the institutionalist school’s argument.

Selznick’s analysis goes beyond efficiency and traditional loyalty: he examines the more nuanced variables of effective leadership of organizations in business, education, government, the military, and labor. Selznick notes that such concepts as organizational character, values, and statesman-like leadership are central to institutions that want to succeed and avoid drift and opportunism.

Beyond the usual platitudes and generalities of leadership, this book takes a realistic look at what successful management means. It is not just about engineering people to produce more or making the agency run “smoothly.” That only matters once concrete aims and values are established. Selznick notes that it is in specifics and nimble responsiveness, and recognition of legitimate but risky outside forces, that true leadership is found. Leaders that allow their institutions to become models of technocratic mechanics enjoy only short-term success, and he makes his point with accessible examples from industry, government, and the military.

The new digital edition of Leadership in Administration: A Sociological Interpretation from Quid Pro Books features quality ebook formatting, active Contents, linked endnotes, and the complete Index. To facilitate continuity in research and easy adoption for classes, it embeds the original pagination from the print editions. In addition, and not found in any prior edition even in print, it includes an explanatory and substantive new Foreword by law professor and sociologist Robert Rosen of the University of Miami. As Rosen notes, “Wielding deep knowledge of normative and political theory in one hand and attentiveness to capacities for growth and development in the other, Selznick demonstrates in this book what organizational leadership means and how organizational leaders may fail.” No wonder, then, that “generations of business students have profited from studying the book” while it “has been assigned for over half a century to students studying organizations. The continuing appeal of the book stems from its concentrated attention to a basic fact of (organizational) life: commitment.” MORE ON THIS BOOK AND ITS CLASSROOM USES.

Long renowned as a Professor of Jurisprudence & Social Policy at the law school of the University of California, Berkeley, and former chair of its Department of Sociology, Philip Selznick authored many influential books including TVA and the Grass Roots (here, in print and ebooks), Law, Society and Industrial Justice, and The Organizational Weapon.

Available from Quid Pro in digital formats:

Amazon for Kindle. [And in Kindle Stores in UK and Germany.]

Barnes & Noble for Nook.

At Google Play app.

Direct on iPad and iPhone with above apps; or look for it in iTunes and iBooks (as previewed and linked here).

And in ePUB format at Smashwords; look for it, too, at Diesel and Kobobooks.

This book (without Dr. Rosen’s Foreword) is also available new from the University of California Press in paperback; its Amazon link is here, for example. (More on the paperback, adoptions, and continuity of pagination.)

ISBN 9781610270571 (ePub) | ISBN 9781610270564 (Kindle)