Ideal type is an abstract model of a classic, pure, form of
social phenomenon. Ideal type is a model concept and does not necessarily exist in exact
form in reality.
An example of ideal type is Ferdinand Tonnies's dichotomy Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft .
Tonnies described two opposite, or polar types, of social
association, one personal and committed (community) one impersonal and unemotional
These two formal types then provide a benchmark for the
analysis and comparison of actually existing societies.
Max Weber also used this method of analysis with his ideal
types of bureaucracy, authority and social action.
The Ideal Type and Sociological Theory -
Jon Hendricks, University of Kentucky Lexington, Kentucky, C. Breckinridge Peters,
University of Kentucky Lexington, Kentucky
Acta Sociologica, Vol. 16, No. 1, 31-40 (1973)
Though widely used in the literature of sociology ideal types have received little
systematic explication. One of the difficulties is the ambiguity surrounding the usage of
types as theoretical or definitional statements.
The Weberian Ideal-type: Development and
Tore Lindbekk, Department of Sociology and Political Science, University of
Acta Sociologica, Vol. 35, No. 4, 285-297 (1992)
Max Weber's concept of ideal-types is presented against a background of the meth
odological controversies at the turn of the century and the conceptions of some recent
authors. The changes in Weber's ideal-type approach from his early studies of medieval
trading companies to Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft and his studies of world religions are
Four ideal-type organizational responses to New
Public Management reforms and some consequences
Tor Hernes, Norwegian School of Management BI, Oslo, Oslo University College -
International Review of Administrative Sciences, Vol. 71, No. 1, 5-17 (2005)
With its dual focus on service and accountability, New Public Management (NPM) accentuates
the inherent tension between the logics of service and accountability respectively in
local public administration. The present article explores, from an organization theory
perspective, possible organizational responses to tensions created by the introduction of
NPM. The article identifies four possible ideal-type organizational responses to NPM.