The UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) mains examination is a crucial step in the civil services recruitment process in India, and one of the optional subjects available to candidates is Public Administration. The previous year’s question papers for Public Administration optional provide valuable insights for aspiring civil servants. These papers serve as a comprehensive resource for candidates to understand the exam pattern, question types, and the depth of knowledge required for success. By studying previous year papers, candidates can gain a better understanding of the specific topics and areas that UPSC frequently tests. This information helps candidates in tailoring their preparation strategy, focusing on high-yield areas, and improving their time management skills during the mains examination.
Furthermore, analyzing previous year papers for Public Administration optional allows candidates to gauge the evolving nature of questions and anticipate potential trends in the examination. It is essential for aspirants to practice answering questions from these papers to enhance their problem-solving and writing skills. Additionally, the past year’s papers also help candidates in self-assessment and identifying their weak areas, enabling them to work on those areas to improve their overall performance in the UPSC mains examination. In conclusion, the UPSC mains Public Administration optional previous year papers are an indispensable resource for candidates seeking to crack the civil services examination, as they offer valuable guidance and a clear roadmap for success in this highly competitive arena.
Question Paper Specific Instructions
- Please read each of the following instructions carefully before attempting questions :
- There are EIGHT questions divided in two SECTIONS and printed both in HINDI and in ENGLISH.
- Candidate has to attempt FIVE questions in all.
- Questions no. 1 and 5 are compulsory and out of the remaining, THREE are to be attempted choosing at least ONE from each section.
- The number of marks carried by a question / part is indicated against it.
- Answers must be written in the medium authorized in the Admission Certificate which must be stated clearly on the cover of this Question-cum-Answer (QCA) Booklet in the space provided. No marks will be given for answers written in a medium other than the authorized one.
- Word limit in questions, wherever specified, should be adhered to.
- Illustrate your answers with suitable sketches, maps and diagrams. These shall be drawn in the space provided for answering the question itself.
- Attempts of questions shall be counted in chronological order. Unless struck off, attempt of a question shall be counted even if attempted partly. Any page or portion of the page left blank in the answer book must be clearly struck off.
Public Administration Optional Question Paper-1 (2018)
SECTION – A
1. Write short answers to the following in about 150 words each : 10×5=50 marks
a). “The scope of the discipline of Public Administration is determined by what an administrative system does.” Does it mean that the scope of this discipline is boundaryless? Explain.
b). “The concepts of rationality and efficiency are intertwined in the bureaucratic analysis of Max Weber.” Comment.
c). “New Public Service approach is an improvement over its predecessor, New Public Management.” Discuss.
d). “A leader is a people’s developer” (Napoleon). Which aspects of subordinates’ development can be positively influenced by a leader? Discuss.
e). “Herbert Simon’s book Administrative Behavior presents a synthesis of the classical and behavioural approaches to the study of Public Administration.” Explain.
2. a). Dwight Waldo in his book, The Administrative State emphatically mentions that the roots of administrative theory lie in political theory. Critically examine Waldo’s contention.
b). “The Phenomenological Approach advocated by the New Public Administration has obstructed the path of theory building in Public Administration.” Comment.
c). Discuss the essential characteristics of public sector-centered and market-centered perspectives in Public Private Partnerships and also compare the two.
3. a). Communication represents the “Nerves of Government” (Karl Deutsch). How can the communication system in the government be made more effective, responsive and motivational?
b). “Political and administrative systems have reciprocal relationship.” Discuss.
c). “An effective Management Information System (MIS) is the key to successful headquarters-field relationships.” Comment.
4. a). “Form of an organisation influences the success of a public enterprise, but the choice of a form has always remained problematic.” Discuss the statement in the context of the comparative merits and limitations of departments, corporations, companies and boards. Give illustrations.
b). “Chester Barnard’s model of ‘Contribution-Satisfaction Equilibrium’ is still considered a logical model of organisational motivation.” Do you agree? Give arguments.
c). “The political approach to Public Administration stresses on the values of representativeness, political responsiveness and accountability through elected officials to the citizenry” (David H. Rosenbloom). Comment.
SECTION – B
5. Answer the following:
a). “The Journey of Administrative Law has moved much beyond A. V. Dicey.” Comment.
b). Edward Gibbon, the author of Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire remarked: “Corruption, the most infallible symptom of Constitutional liberty.” Critically examine this statement.
c). To what extent has e-governance made the administrative system more citizen-oriented? Can it (e-governance) be made more participative?
d). “The issue of development of women is closely related to the issue of women in development.” How can women become equal partners in the process of socio-economic development?
e). “The process of administrative development is generally slower than the economic development.” How can the speed of administrative development be made faster?
6. a). In order to be development-oriented, bureaucracies need to be innovative, flexible, citizen-centric and result-oriented, but they are slow in imbibing these virtues in a democratic system. Do we need to go beyond the traditional models of bureaucracy and create alternative structures? Elaborate.
b). “Administrative values have no value unless they are valued by all stakeholders of the governance system.” Comment.
c). “Lateral entry is an antidote to the complacency in civil service.” Discuss.
7. a). How does ethnocentrism impact development administration in achieving sustainable goals? Argue with examples.
b). “Monetary policy of a country can help or hinder its development process.” Discuss.
c). “Sound Performance Auditing is impossible without systematic Performance or Outcome Budgeting.” Explain the relationship between the two.
8. a). “Administrative systems across the world can be understood only in their respective historical and social contexts.” Explain the statement giving examples.
b). Currently, administrative training focuses more on improving efficiency than on transforming the attitudes and behaviour of civil servants. What type of training would you suggest to fill this gap? Elaborate.
c). “A public policy without the active involvement of people in its formulation, implementation and evaluation is only a facade.” How can this anomaly be corrected?
Public Administration Optional Question Paper-2 (2018)
SECTION – A
1. Write short answers to the following in about 150 words each : 10×5=50 marks
a). “A government next-door is the government that matters most for the people.” Discuss the statement with special reference to the values of local government.
b). The philosophy of the Westminster model is at odds with the political culture of India.” Critically analyse.
c). “The attached offices and subordinate offices are integral to the functioning of the Cabinet Secretariat.” Discuss.
d). It is apprehended that lateral entry will lead to politicisation of bureaucracy. Do you agree? Justify
e). “Contracting out tasks without effective accountability mechanisms can be counter-productive for effective service delivery.” Comment.
2. a). “The market-driven profitability concerns have shaken the foundation of the public sector undertakings.” Do you agree? Give reasons.
b). It is argued that the NITI Aayog has broken the edifice of planning into fragments. Comment.
c). “Autonomy of civil society is crucial for responsive and effective administration.” Examine the statement.
3. a). Critically examine the criteria adopted by the 15th Finance Commission for allocation of resources to States. What have been the major issues of contention since the 10th Finance Commission?
b). “In the coalition era with elusive majority of a single party in the State Legislature, the role of the Governor becomes even more challenging.” Discuss.
c). “Development management advocates self-sustaining customer-friendly institutions at the district level.” Comment.
4. a). Climate change issues pose new challenges for district administration to be proactive.” Elaborate
b). “Judicial overreach to a large extent is a consequence of ineffective executive.” Examine.
c). “In the transition from the State-led economy to the market economy, India should rely more on ‘indicative planning’.” Do you agree? Explain your position.
SECTION – B
5. Answer the following:
a). “The ‘enablers’ and ‘facilitators’ are yet to replace the inspectors’ and “controllers’ in the civil service in India. Do you agree? Justify.
b). “Financial inclusion needs legal backing but it also requires increasing awareness for it to become a reality.” Discuss
c). “Gender budgeting requires rethinking beyond allocations to become a powerful tool of gender mainstreaming.” Discuss.
d). “Social audit has lent a critical edge to the implementation of programmes such as MGNREGA.” Comment.
e). “The AFSPA debate reveals that the Indian paramilitary forces are caught between the imperatives of national security and protection of human rights.” Discuss.
6. a). “Competency mapping is important for effective allocation of responsibilities to administrators.” Do you think that a generalist administrator can handle all issues as effectively as a specialist Discuss.
b). “The recommendations of various commissions on administrative reforms have not made a radical departure from the Paul Appleby Report.” Do you agree? Give reasons.
c). “Performance management requires identification of indicators and measures to ensure that goals are achieved efficiently.” Discuss.
7. a). “Rural development programmes have failed to effectively address the problems of small and marginal farmers.” Analyse and give suggestions.
b). “In the Network Era the TRAI has the challenging task of protecting the Net Neutrality from digital aggression.” Comment.
c). “Neighbourhood management provides an appropriate global strategy of dealing with social exclusion in the urban development scenario.” Comment.
8. a). “Effective public grievance redressal requires administrative commitment. But process reengineering can help prevent some grievances.” Discuss.
b). “Institutional change is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for reducing criminalisation of politics.” Examine.
c). “The disempowerment and depoliticisation of urban local government has happened in multiple ways.” Comment.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: What is the significance of studying UPSC mains Public Administration optional previous year papers?
Answer: Studying previous year papers helps candidates understand the exam pattern, question types, and important topics. It provides insight into what UPSC typically asks in the Public Administration optional paper and aids in effective preparation.
Q: Where can I access UPSC mains Public Administration optional previous year papers?
Answer: UPSC’s official website often provides access to previous year question papers. Additionally, there are various online platforms, coaching institutes, and books that compile and provide these papers for aspirants.
Q: How can I effectively use previous year papers for Public Administration optional preparation?
Answer: Candidates can use previous year papers for practice and self-assessment. Start by solving questions to test your knowledge and writing skills. Analyze your performance, identify weak areas, and work on improving them. Additionally, use them for time management practice and to get a feel for the actual exam.
Q: Are there any noticeable trends or changes in the UPSC mains Public Administration optional papers over the years?
Answer: Yes, there have been changes and trends in the types of questions and topics covered in the Public Administration optional papers. Analyzing previous year papers can help candidates identify these trends and adapt their preparation accordingly.
Q: Can studying previous year papers alone guarantee success in the UPSC mains Public Administration optional paper?
Answer: While studying previous year papers is crucial for preparation, it should be part of a comprehensive strategy. Candidates should also focus on building a strong understanding of the subject, practice answer writing, and keep up with current affairs related to Public Administration to increase their chances of success in the exam.
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