Deil S. Wright
University ofNebraska, Omaha
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
The various combinations of interdependencies and influences among public officials—elected and administrative—in all types and levels of governmental units, with particular emphasis on financial, policy, and political issues.
Intergovernmental relations (IGR) as a term originated in the United States of America in the 1930s. It was a new way of describing significant changes in relationships among levels of government and among the officials who held important policymaking posts. Many of these changes and interactions resulted from efforts to ameliorate the effects of the Great Depression, but some even antedated that major economic and social upheaval. The United States national government inaugurated many new activities and programs that altered the relatively separated spheres of national and state government functions, commonly referred to as "dual federalism" (see federalism). These progressive adaptations, consisting mainly of national policy initiatives, created new and complex working arrangements that could not be easily described using the constitutional-legal language typical of federalism issues. Because of its origins, IGR is viewed as a dynamic concept, which "pictures the intergovernmental relationship as one of constant change in response to social