[*Published as “Power and the Ethics of Reform” in: Ethics in Public Management, 2nd edition, edited by H. George Frederickson and Richard K.Ghere, Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2013.]
[#This paper was delivered as well at the 2013 Annual American Society for Public Administration Conference, March 15-18, New Orleans LA.]
This paper makes the case for an approach to administrative ethics that regards it as a form of political power within contexts of organization and organizational change (reform). After articulating the logic of this perspective, it is applied to two cases of reform (No Child Left Behind in the US and National Health Service reform in the UK) where reformers have used the power of metrics and high-stakes accountability to force change -- and in the process have altered the respective ethical landscapes.
Also posted at SSRN for downloading.