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Dr Amanda Smullen


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Personal profile


Amanda is an expert on public administration, and in particular 'arms-length' bodies. Her work has focused upon both the formal and informal dimensions of public agencies or other public administration, including as these pertain to the institutionalization of public sector bodies, their autonomy or accountability. She has also studied the spread of public management reform ideas and the way these have been adopted and translated to different national political contexts and institutions. She is committed to both the comparative research of public management reform, as well as examining the transnational context wherein reform ideas are diffused, exchanged or enforced. Theories of argumentation, of institutions and professionals have been prominent in her work. Empirical areas of research have included agency reform, performance measurement, accrual accounting and more recently management reforms in mental healthcare.

Research interests

Agencies and semi-autonomous bodies, in particular their formal and informal institutional dimensions.

Institutions, multi-level governance and coordination

Political/policy argumentation and rhetoric

Health and mental health care reform and policy

Researcher's projects

  • Calibrating Public Sector Accountability
  • Temporality and Australian Public Administration
  • Multi-level governance and agencies


B.Arts (Hons. Melb.), PhD in Public Policy & Administration (Erasmus, The Netherlands)


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Network (past 5 years)

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