The Public Manager

Resource on critical public management issues for government officials. Ideas on management for practitioners at all levels of government, international government organizations, consultants, students, and scholars.

Articles from Vol. 32, No. 1, Spring

A-Digital: What If? (Views You Can Use)
Headline: IRS Joins Autodesk, Inc., on List of "Most Admired" Ring. Ring. "Hello." "Hello, Mr. Mortlock, this is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), we noticed that you've just completed your tax return. How was your experience and most importantly...
And Federal Pay in the 21st Century. (Reviews)
Report by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) "A Fresh Start for Federal Pay: The Case for Modernization," White Paper-- 2002. And while we are on the topic of a new kind of federal manager (or leader) for the future, wouldn't it be nice to...
Building a Bigger Bureaucracy: What the Department of Homeland Security Won't Do. (Views You Can Use)
Since the announcement that a massive Department of Homeland Security (DHS) would be created by combining 22 agencies and 179,000 employees, one has to be dismayed by the lack of conversation on the most basic question, "Why do we feel that we need...
Building a Department of Homeland Security: The Management Theory. (Views You Can Use)
From a management standpoint, the creation of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) could turn into one of the Bush administration's most important acts, with desirable, lasting, and permanent results. With this step, the administration paved the...
Citizen Engagement in Managing Offender Reentry: The Case for Community Correctional Facilities. (State and Municipal Management)
How public managers can play an integral role in ensuring public safety and that returning residents have the resources and programs available to help them excel. Over the last 10 years, there has been a fundamental transformation in the US criminal...
Commission's Recommendations Could Go Farther
The Report of the National Commission on Public Service has presented an agenda for the civil service that, if adopted, will go far in improving the efficiency and effectiveness of our government. The Professional Managers Association (PMA) is in favor...
Fundamentals of Earned-Value Management: Government Projects: Learn How to Use an Earned-Value Management System to Help Integrate Budget and Performance, a Key Goal of the President's Management Agenda
Earned-value management is not a new concept, but for many government managers, the newly revised Office of Management and Budget (0MB) Circular A-11, Preparation, Submission, and Execution of the Budget, is their first encounter with it. Circular...
Getting to Green. (Management Fad of the Year)
Announcement of the President's Management Agenda in 2001, followed by a series of Executive Branch Scorecards which grade major federal agencies, led to The Public Manager's Management Fad of the Year 2002. The President's Management Agenda ...
Homeland Security: A Challenging Environment; the Meaning of Homeland Security, Its Intent, and the Key Issues Officials Will Encounter in Addressing Its Policy and Management Challenges. (Article)
Officials at all levels of government with responsibility for homeland security since the September 11 terrorist attacks have been busy crafting de tailed homeland security goals and objectives, strategies to meet those expectations, key milestones...
In Memoriam: Irving Fagin, Civil Servant 1914-2003. (Image of Public Service)
He was the first born of immigrant parents whose port of entry was Galveston, TX. They settled first in Tyler, TX, but later relocated to New York City to be near family that had preceded them on their trek. His father was a steelworker turned butcher...
Interagency Workforce Shaping Initiative. (beyond the Beltway)
How the Honolulu-Pacific Federal Executive Board brought together a variety of civilian and military agencies in a unique way to address critical human capital issues in the region. The Honolulu-Pacific Federal Executive Board (FEB) leads the way...
I Say "Tomato". (Reviews)
The Company of the Future, Francis Cairn cross, Harvard Business School Press, 2002. Part of the premise of most management books is to recognize the impact of management as a form of revolution, following the Industrial Revolution that has transformed...
Managing for Excellence in Overseas Contracting: The Department of State Supports Its Contracting Officers through Organizational Excellence, Web Technology, and Simplicity of Source Selection Techniques. (Acquisition Management)
The Department of State (State) has the most geographically diverse acquisition operation of any federal agency. Managing in this complex environment is a daunting challenge. Through effective leadership, State has been able to excel in areas that...
New Ideas, Old Challenges: The Federal Manager in the 21st Century. (Reviews)
Report of the National Academy of Public Administration: "The 21st Century Federal Manager: A Study of Changing Roles and Competencies," July 2002. Technology is running rampant. Organizational hierarchies are crumbling. Budgets are leaner and meaner....
Obstacles to Empowerment in the Federal Service: An Experienced Federal Practitioner Provides Culture Climate Recommendations to Enhance Achievement of the Bush Administration's Management Reform Objectives. (Article)
The current administration has proposed an impressive array of initiatives to streamline federal operations including the adaptation of corporate best practices. A series of "scorecard" models are in place or under development to ensure that agency...
Outings and Outrages. (the Uncivil Servant)
Well, we have now been through the first midterm election in modem history in which the incumbent party gained in both houses of Congress. This is in addition to local gains in gubernatorial races and state legislatures. To listen to the pundits (talking...
Revitalizing the Federal Government for the 21st Century: Presenting Differing Perspectives on the Report of the National Commission on the Public Service (Volcker II). (Opinion Roundtable: Volcker II)
In January 2003, the National Commission on the Public Service (popularly referred to as "The Second Volcker Commission" in honor of its chairman, Paul A Volcker) issued its eagerly anticipated report on the public service. Titled, "Urgent Business...
Securing the Homeland across Jurisdictional Boundaries. (Regional Governance)
The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments' unprecedented efforts in regional communication and coordination after the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon. September 11, 2001 would become a day of transformation throughout America. For the Metropolitan...
The Commission Calls for Fundamental Reform
More than a few people were surprised when the National Commission on the Public Service led its recommendations with a call for reorganization of the federal government. When former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Paul A. Volcker announced the commission...
The Commission Failed to Address the Core Problems
While the National Commission on Public Service has offered a number of recommendations its members believe will improve the organization and management of the federal government, it fails to address the core problems affecting the delivery of public...
The Other Homeland Security Threat: Bureaucratic Haggling; as Homeland Security and Intelligence Agencies Attempt Monumental Change, Can Management Theory Offer Any New Approaches? (Article)
Reading the policy proposals and reorganization plans for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) quickly leads one to recognize that the scale of change is extensive. No organizational change of this magnitude has taken place in the federal government...
The Role of Internships in Attracting Quality Talent to the Public Sector. (Young Professionals' Arena)
The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars profiles four diverse young professionals who launched their careers in public service as interns. The threat of a human capital crisis looms ominously over the federal community. The disconcerting...
Will the Report Matter?
Will this be the year? Like the Red Sox, whose eternal hope of beating the Yankees is reborn each year, many practitioners and concerned observers hope that the Volcker Commission report will finally be the straw that breaks the camel's back of inaction...
You Say "Tomato". (Reviews)
Two Early 21st Century Management Book Reviews What Management Is, Joan Magretta and Nan Stone, Free Press, May 2002. After reading the preface of What Management Is, by Joan Magretta, with assistance from Nan Stone, my first thought was "Management...