Hidden Syllabus of Public Administration for CSE: Lohit Matani

: Friends I am providing source for the hidden topics for the benefit of the new aspirants choosing Public Administration

UPSC has been asking questions from topics not directly mentioned in the syllabus. These topics may be derived from the existing topics by a veteran player, but newcomers may find difficulty in doing that. UPSC can also ask questions from these hidden topics, as and when it wants to “punish” the aspirants opting for Public Administration.

I have tried to make a list of these hidden topics. If any of the veteran players find something wrong or something extra please mention that so that I can correct it.

P.S : I got a clue of some topics from the “speculated new syllabus”, which was never released by UPSC. 🙂

Paper 1

Unit 1: Introduction
a. British and French philosophy of Public Administration.

Source: The comparison of the administrative systems of various countries is given in the book: ” Pub Ad by Laxmikany”
b. Minnowbrook 3 and its comparison with Minnowbrook 1 and 2.

Source: Covered in the book: “Restructuring Pub Ad: A New Look  by Mohit Bhattacharya”
c. Public Administration: emerging crisis and new directions.

Source: Covered in the book: “Restructuring Pub Ad: A New Look  by Mohit Bhattacharya”

Unit 2: Administrative Thought
a. Karl Marx- In Administrative Thinkers by Prasad and Prasad
b. Dwight Waldo- In New Horizons of Pub Ad by Mohit Bhattacharya
c. Yehezkel Dror. – In Administrative Thinkers by Prasad and Prasad and IGNOU notes on public policy (already mentioned in the strategy for paper 1)
d. View of Indian leaders like Gandhiji, and Chinese leader Mao Zedong on Public Administration.- Views of Gandhiji is mentioned in IGNOU MPA notes; for view of Mao Zedong read about Maoism from the internet and the history of China during the Mao’s period.

Unit 3: Administrative Behavior
Nothing hidden.

Unit 4: Organization
a. Theories- (a) Critical Theory of Public Organization- Cocered in New Horizonz of Pub Ad by Mohit Bhattacharya

, (b) Postmodernism- in Mohit Bhattacharya and Poststructuralism in Public Administration.- One can read from this pdf- http://digitalcommons.unomaha.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1070&context=pubadfacpub
b. General understanding of the following theories of organization- Classical, Neo-Classical, Systems, Structural, Structural-Functional, neo-Human Relations, Pluralist, Organizational- Social Psychological, Strategic-contingencies, Market, Critical.- Already covered in Mohit Bhattacharya and IGNOU notes.
c. Organisational Culture and its effect on organizational efficiency.- Any MBA book.

Unit 5: Accountability and control
a. Judicial Activism- GS topic. One should be awared of recent happenings.
b. Ombudsman- Lokpal
c. Whistleblower
d. Concept of Social Capital.- ARC report on social capital

Unit 6: Administrative Law
a. Administrative Law in France, UK, Germany, and US.- Covered in the administrative law pdf I have shared in the strategy for pub ad paper 1.

Unit 7: Comparative Public Administration
a. Comparative study of Administrative systems: U.K., France, U.S.A, Brazil and China- recent structures should be emphasized.- It is covered in the book ” pub ad by Laxmikant”

Unit 8: Development Dynamics
a. Supermarket State and development.
b. Karl Marx views on development.- Covered in the book : “Social theory and development administration by Mohit Bhattacharya”
c. Amartya Sen’s views on development. – Covered in the book : “Social theory and development administration by Mohit Bhattacharya”
d. Bhagwati Sen and Amartya Sen debate over development.- It is a very general topic; can be read on net; it is also similar to a comparison between Gujarat model of development with the Bihar and Tamil Nadu model.

Unit 9: Personnel Administration
Nothing hidden, it is a clear topic.

Unit 10: Public Policy
This is a very dynamic topic and UPSC generally asks difficult questions from it. Its good to read more in this topic to be on the safe side. Every year UPSC throws a surprise by asking something different. So, the best one can do is to understand the answers of the questions asked previously.

Unit 11: Techniques of Administrative Improvement
a. Social Impact Assessment.
b. Management by Objective.- In Prasad and Prasad; in the chapter on Peter Drucker.
c. Program Evaluation ( given nicely in Nicholas Henry, and also read about the program evaluation scenario in India).

Unit 12: Financial Administration
The topic is clear and complete.

Paper 2:

Unit 1: Evolution of Indian Administration
a. Comparison on Kautilya with western thinkers like Weber, and so on.- Covered in Rajni Goyal and Ramesh Arora.

Unit 2: Philosophical and Constitutional framework of government
a. Gandhian and Nehruvian approaches to development: critical assessment. – It is covered in IGNOU MPA notes.

Unit 3: Public Sector Undertakings
a. Status of Navratna and Maharatna undertakings.- Read India book latest edition for this.

Unit 4: Union Government and Administration

a. Regulatory Authorities- SEBI, IRDA, TRAI, and so on.

Unit 5: Plans and Priorities
The syllabus is clear and complete.

Unit 6: State Government and Administration
a. Emerging Trends in Union-State Relations: Recent trends in inter and intra governmental relations in the context of federalism.
b. Chief Ministerialization of State Governments in the contexts of liberalization and coalition governments.

Unit 7: District Administration since Independence
The syllabus is clear and complete.

Unit 8: Civil Services
The syllabus is clear and complete.

Unit 9: Financial Management
The syllabus is clear and complete.

Unit 10: Administrative Reforms since Independence
a. Important committees and commissions; a critical review of ARC I and ARC II.
b. Performance Mointoring and Evaluation Systems (PMES) and Results Framework Document(RFD)
c. Social and political obstacles to reforms.

Unit 11: Rural Development
a. Ideas of Mahatma Gandhi, Vinoba Bhave, Jayaprakash Narain, and so on.
b. PESA act and problems in its implementation.
c. Local governance in 5th and 6th schedule areas; status of local governance in all the north-east states.

Unit 12: Urban Local Government
Nothing extra.

Unit 13: Law and Order Administration
Nothing extra.

Unit 14: Significant issues in Indian Administration
a. Tribal development administration.
b. Water Management.
c. Environment and Sustainable Development.
d. Land acquisition for development.
e. Women in administration – sexual violence.\
f. Corporate Social Responsibility.


  1. respected sir. take a bow _/\_. please share some notes and sample answers as well. share some more realizations and your detailed strategies for pub-ad and GS. Thank you sooo much for this

  2. sir please share your interview details also. Sir how did you prepare questions related to pub ad and your state. what questions were asked and how should we tackle questions related to pub ad in interview

      1. Respected Sir,
        In the chapter 4 of paper 1 “Organisations”, you have mentioned concepts like postmodernism,post-structuralism,strategic contingencies…Sir i have tried very hard to find a source for them for many days…i could not find it in IGNOU ..Can you please give a precise source for it ..sorry for the trouble.

  3. plz tell me public ad can be completed in 6 months time frame from zero level to upsc level..as i m not from arts background

  4. Means it is not possible to cover pub ad after prelims with in three months..?
    Sir I am from hindi medium, should i go for english medium in present scenario.?

    1. Everything is possible. I am a student of Quantum Mechanics. I wont say it is impossible, but it is difficult.

      Moreover, please don’t change your medium. It won’t help if you not comfortable in English.

  5. Hello Sir,

    your IInd paper marks are extraordinary!!!!! Can you please share some details about how to prepare and answer writing.
    I got 79 and 83 in my first attempt this year.

  6. Sir, do we need to cover all these topics in detail too? Do you recommend any sources for these or did you cover these in your strategy section?

    1. Many of these topics are already covered in the sources I have mentioned in the strategy section. Rest which are not there, we can have a general overview from the net. We just need to understand them to tackle out of box questions.

      1. Follow up from pubad p2 strategy thread…

        can i plz show one of my mock answersheet of pubad p2? Your feedback will be most valuable input i can ever get. As i am wrking abroad n preparing alone i dont have anyone else to show my answers. If you dont mind to help kindly give your mail id….god bless!

      2. Dear Lohit,

        I was waiting for August so that you would be free:)

        As you said, I sent the scanned copy of my P2 answer sheet to your mail id. Kindly check your inbox @ lohitmatani2008@gmail.com and provide some helpful feedbacks. Thanks you so much.

        Mail From: Anand Uthaman
        Mail Subject: Request your kind feedback, Lohit.

        Warm Regards
        Anand Uthaman

  7. thanx a lot sir ,,plz suggest how should i do writing practice ,,should i practice answer writing simultaneously once a topic finished or first of all go through the entire syllabus & then start writing answers ,,please suggest how to begin & sustain coz i’l have hardly 3 months to cover pubad as well as GS,,so strategy becomes most important

      1. sir i couldn’t clear the prilims 2014 , & now looking forward to 2015 ,, I have books like Public Administration And Public Affairs by Nicholas Henry , Essentials of organisational behaviour by Stephen Robbins ,MOHIT BHATTACHARYA, IGNOU BA & MA PUBAD COURSE , & LAXMIKANT ,,,PLZ GUIDE ME HOW CAN I USE THESE BOOKS OR SHOULD I HAVE ANY OYHER MORE BOOK ,BECAUSE NOW MY TARGET IS 2015….

  8. Sir, It was my first attempt and i got 100 marks in paper 1 and just ’29’ marks in paper 2 .Is it possible ? What would have went wrong according to you .

    1. Anything is possible. Your initial answers may not have been of good quality which may have set a wrong impression in the examiner’s mind. But you have to sort out what went wrong.

  9. Respected sir, many congrats. i am appearing next year so what should be proper time frame or deadline of finishing gs n pub ad. if i need any postal material when to collect it and when to appear for the test series ?

  10. Hiii Lohit ,This yaer 2014 mains pub ad paperhas gained a source from the Hidden Course of pub ad. Lot of qusetions came up from this particular syllabus.Thanks…….

      1. Hi Lohit !!! Did you get any particular reference material covering these topics?
        Pl share, those will be of great help.

  11. sir,I am preparing for 2015..can u pls guide me regarding…answers writing?…can u tell me what they actual expecting in answer writing…..

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