The public administration dictionary defines development administration as “the enhancement or improvement of techniques, processes, and systems organized to increase the administrative capacity of a nation, usually a newly emerging nations”.
Martin Landau defines it as the “engineering of social change”. He defines it “as a directive and directional process which is intended to make things happen in a certain way over intervals of time”.
To Edward W. Weidner, “development administration is concerned with maximizing innovation for development”. He defines innovation for development as “the process of planned oriented change in the direction of modernity or nation-building and socio-economic change”.
In the same voice, Johan Montgomery defines the development administration as “carrying out planned change in the economy (in agriculture or industry, or the capital infrastructure supporting both of these, and to a lesser extent, in the social services of the state) especially education and public health”.
Similarly In ayatuallah defines it as “the complex of organizational arrangements for the achievement of action through public authority in pursuance of (1) socio-economic goals and (2) nation-building. It presupposes policies, plans and programmes with a distinct development bias as well as a bureaucracy which consciously and continually seeks to modernize itself to meet the demands of planned change”.
Fred W. Riggs defines development administration as “organized efforts to carry out programmes or projects thought by those involved to serve developmental objectives”.
Further placing an emphasis on administration of development and development of administration, Riggs observes that “Development administration refers not only to a government’s efforts to carry out programmes designed to reshape its physical, human, and cultural environment, but also to the struggle to enlarge a government’s capacity to engage in such programme”.
Looking at various definitions, it is found that the primary objective of development administration is to strengthen the administrative machinery which would bring about socio-politico-economic development.
In brief, development administration is the process of carrying out development programmes and projects in the direction of nation building and socio-economic progress through an administrative apparatus.
It is through public as well as non-public organizations and their proper management that a developing country can carry development policy measures for the realization of national goals and objectives.