The Grand Gurus of Transition
Shackleton, Anne Marie, The Public Manager
How new officials learn the importance of career service employees and key nonprofits in implementing their agenda and gain a leg up in achieving their objectives.
The modern period of United States presidential transitions began in 1933, with the passage of the 20th amendment to the Constitution, which moved inauguration day from March 4 to January 20. Since that time, presidential transitions have been complicated by changes in presidential parties. With the exception of the 1988 election, where heir-apparent George Bush succeeded Ronald Reagan, each newly-elected president has won a contested election against a designated successor or an incumbent president. As a result, incoming administrations have been reluctant to take counsel from the outgoing administrations.
The National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA)--as well as other established nonprofit organizations such as the Heritage Foundation, the Brookings Institution, the American Enterprise Institute, and the Council for Presidential Studies--attempts to fill this gap by providing nonpartisan information on the process of transition. A congressionally-chartered nonprofit, the Academy elects its fellows based on achievement in public service. Coming from practical and academic backgrounds, with both career civil servants and political appointees, and balanced between Republicans and Democrats, the academy's fellows have legitimacy with many actors in the transition drama.
While a large number of organizations take advantage of presidential transitions to advance their issues-oriented agenda, relatively few organizations provide transition teams with the information necessary to assume power without unduly disrupting the necessary functions of government and at the same time increasing their chances for effectively advancing the new political agenda.
This year NAPA …
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Publication information: Article title: The Grand Gurus of Transition. Contributors: Shackleton, Anne Marie - Author. Journal title: The Public Manager. Volume: 29. Issue: 3 Publication date: Fall 2000. Page number: 21. © 2009 Bureaucrat, Inc. COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group.
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