Innovating with Integrity; How Local Heroes Are Transforming American Government

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Overview

Innovating with Integrity presents a comprehensive portrait of the local heroes -- front-line public servants and middle managers -- who are reinventing state and local government, and it offers practical recommendations for innovating successfully.

Based on a study of more than 200 successful government innovations, this book is the first large-scale, systematic analysis of innovation in American government. Sandford Borins identifies the components of integrity that he finds in successful innovators, including the intellectual discipline to plan rigorously and to establish measurable goals; the ability to collaborate with others and accommodate criticism; and a willingness to mobilize both the private sector and the community. In addition to analyzing the common traits driving new initiatives, Borins shows the distinctive differences among six areas of innovation: information technology, organizational redesign, environmental and energy management, policing and community development, social services, and education.

This trenchant analysis of what initiatives actually work and why contributes to both the practice and theory of public management. Its practical advice will be especially valuable for front-line government workers, public managers, union leaders, agency heads, politicians, and all concerned with reforming government.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Tests quantitatively some hypotheses about innovation in local US government. Analyzes data collected in 1993-94 from responses to a complex, open-ended questionnaire sent to semifinalists for an innovation award to profile the types of innovations, the characteristics of those who initiate them, characteristics of the innovation process, financial resources, organizational structure, and the evaluation of the outcomes. Paper edition unseen, $23.95. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780878406883
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/1998
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 346
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Sandford Borins is a professor of public management and chair of the division of management at the University of Toronto at Scarborough. He is a former visiting professor at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and the author of several books, including Political Management in Canada (McGraw-Hill Ryerson, 1992). His research focuses on international comparisons of public management reform initiatives. He has extensive experience designing training programs and consulting on public management for the Canadian government.

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Read an Excerpt

"Chock full of insights and observations that should be of interest to anyone who cares about how to make American government more adaptive and effective. And it is packed as well with compelling portrayals of real-life public officials facing extraordinary challenges." -- -- from the foreword by Alan D. Altshuler, Stanton Professor of Urban Policy and Planning, Harvard University

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Table of Contents

List of Tables
Foreword
Preface
Pt. 1 Introduction: Innovating with Integrity 3
1 Objectives and Methodology 7
2 Characteristics of Public Sector Innovations 19
3 The Who, Why, and How of Innovation 37
4 Obstacles Overcome, Problems Persisting 66
5 Financing and Organizing Innovations 92
6 Results, Verification, and Replication 103
Pt. 2 Introduction: On Being an Innovator 123
7 Life in the Fast Lane: Innovation through Information Technology 131
8 Revolution from Within: Organizational Change 152
9 Dances with Business: Environmental and Energy Management 188
10 We are Family: Community Building 210
11 Facing the Toughest Challenges: Social Services 236
12 Everybody's Business: Innovation in Education 261
13 Some Final Words for Practitioners and Academics 283
App The Innovations Awards Questionnaire 295
Notes 299
References 307
Index 333
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