2020 Impact Factor: 1.243
2019 Google Scholar h5-index: 23
ISSN: 0011-5266 E-ISSN: 1548-6192
Drawing on the nation’s most prominent thinkers in the arts, sciences, humanities, and social sciences, as well as the professions and public life, Dædalus, Journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, explores the frontiers of knowledge and issues of public importance. Recent issues have examined Access to Justice; Inequality as a Multidimensional Process; Science and the Legal System; Why Jazz Still Matters; Political Leadership; Ethics, Technology, and War; Russia Beyond Putin; and The Prospects and Limits of Deliberative Democracy.
The Administrative State in the 21st Century
Shortly after the 2016 election, presidential advisor Stephen Bannon vowed to pursue the “deconstruction of the administrative state,” signaling the new administration’s view that parts of government itself had stolen power from the American people. But while the administrative state may have been a new term for many Americans, debates around this so-called fourth branch of government have persisted since its origins in the late nineteenth century: What parts of life should agencies regulate? Is the administrative state constitutional? And is it time for significant change?
The Summer 2021 issue of Dædalus considers the future of the modern administrative state—the more than two million civilian employees working in government agencies and institutions. Through exploration of such topics as automation and machine learning in government, democratic accountability, federal workforce morale, and the cost-benefit state, three options emerge from the issue: deconstruction via regulation and control by the legislature; tweaking, which would modify existing doctrine without significant changes; and reconstruction, which might involve adopting flexible modes of regulation like direct citizen deliberation in rulemaking.