Political patronage in New Zealand : an exploratory study

Type of content
Theses / Dissertations
Publisher's DOI/URI
Thesis discipline
Political Science
Degree name
Master of Arts
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Townsend, Connal Hugh

This thesis is concerned with the theory and practice of political appointments in New Zealand. Little has been written on the subject of political patronage recently, and that literature which does exist is mainly concerned with the application of a moral theory to bureaucratic appointments. This thesis is an attempt to analyse areas of political patronage that lie outside the scope of previous works, and to apply and where relevant to judge the value of existing theories in this analysis. The first chapter is concerned with political patronage per se and areas of government in which it is used. Three indicators of moral acceptability are introduced (efficiency, equality of opportunity, and neutrality), and their value as theoretical tools is assessed. The second and third chapters are respectively concerned with case studies of the Royal Honours system, and the appointment of Justices of the Peace. As areas of political patronage these are studied in the light of the moral trichotomy mentioned above. The final conclusion is that political patronage is an acceptable method of appointment as long as the patron recognises and applies certain moral criteria in his selection of clients. With respect to the appointment of Justices of the Peace in particular, it seems that this blend of theory and practice is often lacking.

Patronage, Political--New Zealand, New Zealand--Officials and employees--Selection and appointment
Ngā upoko tukutuku/Māori subject headings
ANZSRC fields of research
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