The two important virtues of Strategic Public Management: Best Practices from Government and Nonprofit Organizations are its scope and itspracticalityThe19 contributors cover a full range of day-to-day management challenges that public managers face and provide concrete examples and specific real-world steps that those managers can take to respond to growing citizen expectations for more results-oriented and effective government. As such, the 17-chapter volume will be most helpful to program managers and those interested in the Certified Public Manager (CPM) program. For example, Howard R. Balanoff's chapter provides a very insightful overview of the history, value, and current status of the CPM program.
A short review cannot possibly do justice to each of the chapters in the volume. Rather, I'll touch on four overlapping and reinforcing themes that cut across the chapters to provide a basis for understanding the challenges--and opportunities--for strategic public management in the 21st century:
* governance and the "wicked" issues
* cultural change in organizations and the need to adopt a future orientation
* data-driven decision making
* reporting, transparency, and citizen involvement.
Governance and "Wicked" Issues
Balanoff and Warren Master's preface observes that managers at all levels of government are asked to focus on, and manage for, results--outcomes that by definition take place outside managers' organizations and which they do not fully control.…