James Ward

Adjunct Associate Professor of Public Service

James D. Ward is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Public Service of NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. He is a leading scholar in the field of public administration and policy whose work has helped to advance important public policy and management topics.  His latest book, Policing and Race in America:  Economic, Political and Social Dynamics was published in 2018 by Lexington Books, a subsidiary of Rowman and Littlefield.  The book demonstrates how racial disparities in police stops, police shootings, and other law enforcement activities grow from deep institutional patterns in policing and urban governance.  And, it challenges policy makers to think more deeply and act with greater determination to address one of the most troubling and important problems of our time.  His other recently published books include Leadership and Change in Public Sector Organizations:  Beyond Reform (Routledge, 2017) and Institutional Racism, Organizations and Public Policy (Peter Lang, 2014).  He organized and chaired the Mini-Conference on Policing and Race (January 29-30, 2016 in Cincinnati, Ohio) in conjunction with his serving as a guest editor for Public Administration Review’s symposium on policing and race.  The symposium, published in the March/April 2017 issue, examines policing and race from both domestic and international perspectives.

Professor Ward has published extensively on social justice issues in relation to law enforcement racial profiling, local government reforms and service delivery, and fiscal management.  A former National Council member of the American Society for Public Administration (2011-2014), he is a founding member of ASPA’s Ethics and Standards Implementation Committee, and served on the editorial boards of State and Local Government Review, the Journal of Public Affairs Education, the Journal of Public Management and Social Policy, and the Innovation Journal/La Revue de l’innovation, as well as on the executive boards of the Southeastern Conference of Public Administration, the Conference of Minority Public Administrators,  the Section on Ethics and Integrity in Governance, the Section on Intergovernmental Administration and Management, and the Section on Democracy and Social Justice.  His research has appeared in Public Administration Review and other major academic journals.  In 2017, and based on his commitment to excellence in teaching, he was named Educator of the Year by the National Forum for Black Public Administrators.

Dr. Ward has a PhD in Political Science and MPA from the University of Cincinnati. He also holds a BA journalism from the University of Mississippi.

This course focuses on the three sets of key questions: (1) mission and vision ("What areas or activities should we be working in?"); (2) strategy and operations ("How can we perform effectively in this area?"); and (3) leadership (“What leadership skills are needed to develop and implement strategies effectively?”).  We will cover both strategy formulation ("What should our strategy be?") and strategy implementation ("What do we need to do to make this strategy work?"). 

All organizations – government agencies as well as nonprofit or private companies with a public purpose – face substantial challenges that demand strategic responses, often in uncertain economic, social, or political contexts.  To deal effectively with these challenges, managers need knowledge and skills in strategic management and leadership:  setting and aligning goals with the organization’s mission; handling complex trade-offs between demand for services and resource constraints; defining measures of success; motivating staff and other stakeholders; developing relationships with relevant groups; dealing with crises and environments in transition; and leading organizational change.  In short, the course emphasizes the multiple, related requirements of the leader/manager's job: analysis, creativity, and action.

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