Ordering Things: The Irish State Administration Database
New theoretical approaches to the state have posed challenges for the comparative analysis of the organizational features of states. The analysis of state bodies and state agencies has largely been confined to the sub-discipline of public administration, and has been resistant to the systematic classification that has made progress possible in other areas of comparative politics. This article argues that there is much to be gained by reconceptualizing state bodies in a comparative context. This paper profiles the classification system underlying the construction of the Irish State Administration Database (ISAD) (Hardiman et al., 2011). This paper sets out a new approach to conceptualizing the organizational and functional features of states. ISAD not only provides a valuable research resource for work on the Irish state, but can also provide a framework for building a comparative research agenda.
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