Governance

The Tides of Reform Revisited: Making Government Word, 1945-2002

The Tides of Reform Revisited: Making Government Word, 1945-2002
Public Administration Review 2006, Vol. 66, No. 1, pp. 6-19.

Light, P.C.
01/01/2006

The past six decades have witnessed acceleration in both the number and variety of major administrative reform statutes enacted by Congress. This increase can be explained partly by the increased involvement of Congress, a parallel decrease in activity and resistance by the presidency, and heightened public distrust toward government. At least part of the variation in the tides or philosophies of reform involves a "field of dreams" effect in which the creation of new governmental structure during the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s generated increased interest in process reforms. However, part of the acceleration and variety of reform appears to be related to the lack of hard evidence of what actually works in improving government performance. Measured by federal employees' perceptions of organizational performance, what matters most is not whether organizations were reformed in the past, but whether organizations need reform in the future and can provide essential resources for achieving their mission.

Preparing Americans for Disaster

Preparing Americans for Disaster
The Christian Science Monitor December 12

Light, P.C.
12/12/2005

As they ponder the final 9/11 commission report detailing the continued lack of preparedness among federal agencies, Congress and President Bush should also consider the parallel lack of preparedness among the citizenry as a whole.

Homeland Security's Extreme Makeover

Homeland Security's Extreme Makeover
The Christian Science Monitor, October 12

Light, P.C.
10/12/2005

As the Department of Homeland Security proceeds with its own recovery from hurricane Katrina, Americans have to wonder what, if anything, can be done to make sure the nation is ready for catastrophes such as earthquakes and terrorist attacks that come without warning.

Critical Infrastructure and Interdependencies

Critical Infrastructure and Interdependencies
McGraw Hill Handbook of Homeland Security, David Kamien, ed. New York, NY: McGraw,

Zimmerman, R.
10/10/2005

The McGraw-Hill Homeland Security Handbook takes a broad view of the challenges involved in enhancing domestic security and emergency preparedness. Our goal is to contribute to the discussion of this national issue and heighten readers' awareness of the importance of integrating policies, strategies, and initiatives across different areas into a cohesive national and international effort.

Toward a More Public Discussion of the Ethics of Federal Social Program Evaluation

Toward a More Public Discussion of the Ethics of Federal Social Program Evaluation
Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Vol. 24, No. 4, pp 824-852.

Blustein, J.
10/01/2005

Federal social program evaluation has blossomed over the past quarter century. Despite this growth, there has been little accompanying public debate on research ethics. This essay explores the origins and the implications of this relative silence on ethical matters. It reviews the federal regulations that generally govern research ethics, and recounts the history whereby the evaluation of federal programs was specifically exempted from the purview of those regulations. Through a discussion of a recent evaluation that raised ethical concerns, the essay poses - but does not answer - three questions: (1) Are there good reasons to hold federal social program evaluations to different standards than those that apply to other research?; (2) If so, what ethical standards should be used to access such evaluations?; and (3) Should a formal mechanism be developed to ensure that federal social program evaluations are conducted ethically?

Does the Structure and Composition of the Board Matter? The Case of Nonprofit Organizations

Does the Structure and Composition of the Board Matter? The Case of Nonprofit Organizations
Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Vol. 21, No.1, Spring

O'Regan, K.
04/01/2005

This article discusses some of the key differences in board behavior between nonprofit organizations and for-profit firms using a relatively new dataset from New York City nonprofits. We provide evidence on the broader role that nonprofit boards play for their organizations and then give some suggestive results on the relationship between board structure and composition, and individual board member performance. The results provide some evidence that the executive directors of nonprofits may use their power to push boards toward fundraising in place of monitoring activity. Using a fixed-effects framework, we also find no systematic relationship between board personal demographics and performance, although both tenure on a board and multiple board service do seem to matter.

The New York Transportation Journal

The New York Transportation Journal
Spring 2005, Vol. 8, No. 2.

Sander, E.G., Publisher & de Cerreño, A.L.C, Sterman, B.P., (eds).
04/01/2005

This issue includes testimony given by NYU Wagner Rudin Center Director, Elliot G. Sander at a joint hearing of the New York State Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means Committees. Also included is an interview with Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) on Federal funding, as well as an article focusing on Staten Island's unique transportation issues.

The Use of Logic Models by Community-Based Initiatives

The Use of Logic Models by Community-Based Initiatives
Evaluation and Program Planning 2005; 28:167-172

Kaplan, S.A. & Garrett, K.E.
03/11/2005

Many grant programs now require community-based initiatives to develop logic models as part of the application process or to facilitate program monitoring and evaluation. This paper examines three such programs to understand the benefits and challenges of using logic models to help build consensus and foster collaboration within a community coalition, strengthen program design, and facilitate internal and external communication. The paper concludes with recommendations for how to make the logic model development process more useful for community-based initiatives.

'Forever Worthy of the Saving': Lincoln and a More Moral Union

'Forever Worthy of the Saving': Lincoln and a More Moral Union
Lincoln's American Dream Edited by in Joseph Fornieri & Kenneth Deutsch. Potomac Books.

Kersh, R.
01/01/2005

Countering the claim that there is nothing new to be said about the 16th US president, political scientists Deutsch (State U. of New York-Geneseo) and Fornieri (Rochester Institute of Technology) introduce 33 diverse perspectives on his views and legacy. Lincoln scholars and political commentators examine such still-relevant themes as race, equality, the Constitution, executive power, war crimes, religion, and Federal vs. state rights. The last essay assumes the Lincolnian position on current debates over multiculturalism and abortion.

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