Learn the latest public administration news in today's edition of The Bridge!

February 14, 2024

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ASPA 2024 Annual Conference Session Details Are Online!

ASPA's 2024 Annual Conference is two months away! We are looking forward to seeing everyone in Minneapolis, April 12-16, for our first in-person conference in two years. Examining this year's theme, "Building Resilient Communities," attendees will have the option to attend more than 150 sessions across six tracks: good governance and democratic resilience; social equity, diversity and inclusion; innovative human resource management; environmental management and effective technology; emergency preparedness, public health and disaster response; and global and comparative perspectives. Special thanks go to this year's co-chairs, Naim Kapucu and Hillary Knepper, for their (and our track reviewers') hard work determining who is on the program this year.

Speaking of, program details for these sessions—taking place throughout the conference—are online! You can search by date or by track to find those who will be presenting (or moderating or discussing) in Minneapolis.

If you load the page to search by date, you can search by the session title or speaker name—or click on the arrows next to each date to view the full list of sessions taking place. If you view sessions by track, you can still search for specific people or session names, and also load a list of each track's sessions to see discussions within that subject matter.

This year's conference features a wide range of research panels, practitioner discussions and hands-on workshops, with plenty to learn and take away from your time in Minneapolis! Our program will adjust in the coming weeks as speaker details shift and sessions change to accommodate those needs. Check the site regularly to view current information.

There's only one month remaining to register and pay current rates; registration rates will go up March 13. Current rates for the full event are $569 for members, $669 for nonmembers. Student and new professional members may register for only $259. View all registration rates and details online here.

E-Learning at Your Fingertips

ASPA staff work tirelessly to keep your skills up to date and the information flowing all year long through our e-learning program. Visit our website to see more details about upcoming KeepingCurrent, BookTalk and Student and New Professional series programming.

KeepingCurrent: Using Performance Data to Improve Customer Experience
February 29 | 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. EST
Sponsored By ASPA's Center for Accountability and Performance

Mo Earley, Federal CX High Impact Service Provider Portfolio Lead, Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget
John M. Kamensky, Moderator, Emeritus Fellow, IBM Center for The Business of Government
Lindsay Moore, Customer Experience Strategist, 0-5 Life Experience Team, Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget

Improving Americans’ experience with government services has been a focal point for more than a decade. Today, federal initiatives are guided by a presidential executive order that directs agencies to develop “customer experience” strategies and plans to make services they provide more like the simple, seamless and secure services Americans see in their personal, online and in-person services in the private sector. The goal is to organize around the customer, not around the delivery programs; research shows that when citizens feel they are treated fairly and professionally, trust in government increases. Our presenters have first-hand experience grappling with these issues and will be able to provide webinar participants with a real-time picture of the progress and challenges they face.

Students and New Professionals: Hot Jobs in Government
March 7 | 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. EST
Sponsored By West Chester University

Kiersten Farmer, Data Scientist, City of Henderson, Nevada
Angie Kline, Moderator, Associate Professor and MPA Program Director, West Chester University
Carrie Mathes, Chief Procurement Officer, Orange County Government, Florida

What if some of the most in-demand government jobs are ones you have never heard of or thought about? Take procurement, a profession that does not get the attention it deserves in the classroom, but is responsible for $2 trillion in government spending every year. Or, diversity and inclusion, an area receiving increased public visibility, but also where governments are still playing catch up. A panel of public service professionals from the front lines will share with you the emerging “hot jobs in government,” positions where you can see the value of your work each day. They will highlight the ins and outs of these jobs and share tips on how to get your foot in the door to make a difference in positions that governments across the nation are looking to fill.

From the Archives
KeepingCurrent: Agile Government
Agile government is defined by NAPA as “...mission centric, customer focused, communication and collaboration enabled, and continually demonstrates success to customers and the public. Agile government involves small teams and customer participation, empowered by leaders to take rapid action to deliver timely, transparent results.” Ed DeSeve and Joe Mitchell discussed the principles of agile government and how it will shape the future. (Members only.)

Honoring 100 Years of Public Service

One of our Chapter leaders recently brought to our attention that two of its members, Tom and Betty Chester, are celebrating a combined total of 97.5 years of public service.

As Tom reported to our Tennessee Chapter president: "Betty retired...in January 2019 with 47.5 years of service with the Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. I served the State of Tennessee for 50 years, first in finance and administration and then with the Department of General Services. I retired on March 31, 2023."

The ASPA national office joins with the Tennessee Chapter in congratulating Tom and Betty for their remarkable career. Thank you for your service!

Have a similar story to tell? We'd love to hear from you! Contact us with your information.

It's the Perfect Time to Join ASPA!

You, too, can start your journey toward 100 years of ASPA membership any time!

As we move forward into 2024, now is a great time to encourage your students, interns and new employees to join ASPA and add new resources to their ongoing catalog. Whether in webinar, article, conference or journal format, our member services are a great place to start, saving time and effort in finding the expertise you need to overcome your challenges.

ASPA's mission is to advance excellence in public service; when you join our organization, you are not only gaining access to all of our resources but also supporting public service as a profession. Any time is a good time to add your voice to our collective whole and join other members in promoting the great things public service makes happen across society.

If you have been meaning to rejoin ASPA, now is the time to do it. If you are a professor and have classrooms full of students, now is the time to sign them up! If you have never joined ASPA, try it now and see what you have been missing.

Check out our full list of benefits and services online and then head to our application form to sign up. Professors: ASPA can help you sign up groups of students any time. Contact us for assistance.

Every spring we welcome hundreds of new members to our society. We look forward to counting you, your peers and your colleagues among them in the next few months! Join today!

Advertise at the 2024 Annual Conference!

ASPA's 2024 Annual Conference is the premier event of the year for the public administration community, and a prime branding opportunity for any organization looking to be known in our space.

If you have not yet signed up to advertise your brand at this year's event, contact us right away so you can make the most of this year's opportunities.

  • Conference Pocket Guide Full-Page Ad
    New this year, and replacing our standard program book, the conference pocket guide is the only printed resource available for branding this year—and we only have two placements left! Priced at only $800, this guide offers tremendous brand exposure and will be viewed by all 1,200 attendees at this year's event.

  • Conference App!
    Brand-new this year, ASPA will have an app for this event where you can find all of the materials and information you need to participate fully in the conference. More information is coming soon, but if you are looking for an affordable option with excellent branding, reserve an ad for only $500 and you'll be on display and in the palm of everyone's hand!

  • Pop-Up Ad
    For those looking for the "go big or go home" model, these pop-up signs are for you. Only $900, and sized at 79" high, your brand will be visible to everyone as they walk the hallways of the hotel. Act fast: reservations and art are due to us by March 1.

Conference advertising options only happen once a year. Avoid FOMO and make sure your brand is viewable at this year's event.

Contact ASPA's Karen Garrett for more details.


Introducing Plain Language Summaries for Public Integrity

Taylor & Francis and the editorial leadership team at Public Integrity (PI) are delighted to announce the addition of a new section to PI's articles: plain language summaries (PLS). PLS now will be required with the submission of an article to PI.

PLS communicate the significance of academic research and evidence to a broad audience in jargon-free, clear language. They are published within the article (similar to an abstract) and in front of the Taylor & Francis paywall.

We are excited to introduce PLS to PI, giving wider accessibility and reach to its published research and continuing ASPA's mission of serving as a bridge between the academic and practitioner communities.

In addition to within the article, all PLS published in Taylor & Francis journals can be found on T&F’s Plain Language Summary microsite.

More information about PLS, including their scope, requirements, intended audience and reasons for publishing them can be found on Taylor & Francis’ Author Services page. Authors will need to visit PI’s Instructions for Authors page and review the information in "About the Journal." If you have any general (non-submission related) questions about PLS content, please contact T&F Portfolio Manager Hannah Shakespeare. The PI team thanks David Reed, associate editor and founder of the Center for Public Administrators, for suggesting exploring introducing PLS to the journal.

We hope ASPA’s membership will find the introduction of PLS to PI to be of interest and will consider submitting their next article with a PLS to the journal.

JSEPA 2:1 Is Out

The most recent edition of the Journal of Social Equity in Public Administration (JSEPA) has been released. Volume 2, issue 1 includes research and reviews from an array of equity-minded scholars, covering topics such as COVID-19 vaccine sharing across nations, Black representation in foreign policy, equity in death and burial services, racial healing and much, much more. JSEPA is open access; please share articles with your colleagues, students and social media followers.

AU-SPA Summer Diversity Academy Seeks Applications for Class of 2024

The goal of American University's (AU) Summer Diversity Academy, housed in its School of Public Affairs (SPA), is to provide an opportunity for scholars who are under represented among public affairs faculty to receive quality feedback on research projects and mentoring advice on strategic planning of an academic career. The program will provide a one-week in-residence experience at AU-SPA in its department of public administration and policy. The program is open to advanced PhD students and junior faculty and will provide constructive criticism for the participants from AU faculty and fellow attendees on the participants’ research projects. Additional sessions will focus on the publication process, peer reviewing of manuscripts, creating professional networks and the job market in public affairs.

The 2024 Academy will be held June 17-21; AU will provide transportation, lodging and meals. Click here for more information and the application process.

To apply, candidates should address a letter of application to Ken Meier by April 1, 2024. Please include the following materials in your application:

  1. A complete draft of a research paper that you would like to workshop at the Academy
  2. A cover letter that includes your career goals, how you contribute to increasing diversity in the field of public affairs and how your research interests fit with the expertise of the SPA faculty. Feel free to suggest members of the faculty who you think would make a good mentor.
  3. The names of two references.


Public Administration Today Highlight

Public Administration Today features white papers, research and blogs from across the profession. If you're interested in more—especially your own curated news feed in your inbox every week—visit the website, create an account and check off your interest areas so you can stay up to date about the latest research being released!

Individualism Is Making Public Transit Worse
Via Next City: For buses and trains to work well, they must meet the needs of many different people at the same time. When you complain that transit doesn’t start where you want it to start, doesn’t end where you want it to end and doesn’t go all the time, you’re describing inadequate public transit. With adequate funding and in the context of good city planning, public transit can do all of these things for vast numbers of people...

Tips, Resources and the Fun Stuff

What Minnesota Inventions Have Shaped Modern Life?
Many know the story of the pacemaker and Post-it notes. But creative Minnesotans have devised hundreds of other products we take for granted. (A fun read for those getting ready to head to Minneapolis for ASPA's 2024 Annual Conference!)

Political Interference and the Future of Higher Education
Public universities are under siege in too many places as elected officials move to install new leaders and limit what can be taught. Educational institutions should be safe for learning and as incubators for democracy.

How to Communicate Across Generations at Work
For the first time in history, we have five generations in the workplace. This certainly poses challenges for each of these generations.[Also]... this is the first time in history that generations have preferred different styles and methods of communication.

Are You Lonely? You're Not Alone.
Our latest public health crisis impacts our health in surprising ways. But it has an antidote: social connection. This article focuses on how loneliness became an epidemic and share ways to come together.

Want to Get Your Story Out? Six Tips for State and Local Officials
Over the course of years, we’ve given speeches about a variety of topics—ranging from human resources to performance management to budgeting. But whatever the nature of the talk, when it’s time for Q&A, eventually someone asks us something like this: “There’s so much good happening in our government. How come the press never seems interested in anything but bad news?”

Feds Unveil Resource for Election Officials and Workers
The web page provides free resources for state and local officials as they grapple with fears of possible foreign interference in elections and physical threats linked to conspiracy theories.

In the News

Today's headlines contain plenty of news coverage of some of our nation's most pressing public administration challenges. ASPA has curated some of the most important stories from recent weeks. If you have not seen these yet, make sure you read them now!


Public Finance Public Service Social Equity


Members in the News

10 Surprising Things About the "Deep State"—Starting with the Roman Emperor Caligula
Whose Border Is It, Anyway?
By Don Kettl

Governor Executive Orders: The Lowdown on 4th Quarter 2023
By Katherine Barrett and Richard Greene

The Biggest Finance and Management Issues to Watch in 2024
This article includes ASPA member and District I Representative Michael Ahn.

Our Divided Nation Will Fall Unless We Return to American Pragmatism
By James Christian-Blockwood


Tell Me Something Good...

Need some good news in your world? Check this out:

Review: Jon Stewart Makes a Triumphant Return to "The Daily Show"
It seemed like old times. After a nearly eight-year absence, Jon Stewart returned to "The Daily Show" Monday night with all the rage and ridiculousness that made him a late-night legend.

We admit: This is not our typical "Something Good" content—but who can resist?


Around Public Administration

Here are the most recent updates from across the profession. Did we miss you? Send us your news and we'll include it in the next round!

Upcoming Events:

Calls for proposals, calls for nominations and other updates:
  • Baruch State and City Policy Center invites Requests for Proposals
    The Howard J. Samuels State and City Policy Center at the Austin W. Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, Baruch College, invites requests for proposals for 2024 fellowships. This year, there are two fellowships available: the Samuels Doctoral Fellows and Samuels Public Affairs Fellowship. The former is for PhD students who have defended their dissertation proposals; the latter is for academics, researchers and community leaders who work in the field of public affairs. Up to four fellows in each category will be awarded unrestricted grants of $5,000 each. The application deadline for both fellowships is February 15, 2024. Click here for more details about the doctoral fellows program; click here for more details about the public affairs fellowship.

  • 18th Annual E-PARCC Teaching Case and Simulation Competition Call for Submissions
    The Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration (PARCC) at the Syracuse University Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs invites submissions for its 18th annual E-PARCC competition to further stimulate the creation of effective and innovative teaching cases and simulations. E-PARCC, a project of the “Collaborative Governance Initiative,” provides free online resources for those who teach conflict and collaboration around the world. More than 3,000 visitors per month from more than 40 countries take advantage of E-PARCC materials. The E-PARCC competition now consists of two tracks: (1) collaborative problem solving, collaborative governance and network governance and analysis; and (2) collaborative methods in international development. Entries for the competition should be tailored for one of the two tracks. Among other options, entries might focus on the use of collaborative methods to: identify public policy and management problems and/or create and implement policy and management solution; develop innovations that improve the design, delivery and evaluation of public services and programs; apply participatory and consensus building methods to address and overcome societal divisions; and improve open, transparent and accountable government and governance through advocacy and public action. All entries must be original and not published elsewhere. Submit the entry with the cover page to [email protected] by February 15, 2024, with the subject line: E-PARCC (your last name). Contact Catherine Gerard, interim director of PARCC, with any questions. Click here for more information.

  • ASPA Section on Democracy and Social Justice 2024 Award Nominations
    Click here to submit nominations for the Section's awards: peer reviewed article of the year, book of the year, capstone/thesis of the year and doctoral dissertation of the year. All works submitted for consideration must have been published between January 1, 2023 and December 31, 2023. For articles, those assigned to a volume/issue as well as "online first" publications are accepted. For books, in addition to solo- and co-authored books, edited volumes also are accepted (please contact [email protected] for more information after you have submitted a book nomination). Capstones/theses and doctoral dissertations submitted for consideration must have been successfully defended by December 31, 2023 (please also submit a PDF copy of the applicable piece you are nominating to: [email protected]). Both self-nominations as well as nominations submitted on behalf of others are accepted. Multiple submissions are welcome. All nominations are due by 11:59 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Time) on Friday, February 16, 2024. Award recipients will receive a plaque and be acknowledged at the Section's annual business meeting at ASPA's 2024 Annual Conference, as well as in our Section communications (i.e., listserv and social media).

  • South Florida Chapter 2024 Best Practices Conference
    Join the ASPA South Florida Chapter for its 18th Annual Best Practices Conference, Friday, February 23, at Miami Dade College. This year’s conference theme is “XYZ: Public Service Across Generations." The full-day conference will feature opening plenary speaker Marcus Bright, morning sessions, lunch and afternoon panel discussions that address the conference theme focusing on technology, ethics, multigenerational wellbeing, public relations and the workforce. The audience for the conference primarily consists of individuals employed by the government, nonprofits, academia and college students. Find the agenda and a registration page online here; registration is $60 for an ASPA/nonprofit/Miami-Dade County employee, $75 for a non-ASPA member and $40 for a student with a valid ID.

  • SECM Call for Papers: William Petak Award
    The Section on Emergency and Crisis Management (SECM) is proud to announce its solicitation of papers for the William Petak Award, given each year to the best paper on an emergency management topic delivered at ASPA's Annual Conference. The award honors William Petak, a founder of the Section and a seminal scholar in emergency management. Anyone presenting a paper on emergency management at the conference is eligible to submit their paper for review. The winner will receive a cash prize of $100. Submissions should be submitted no later than March 1, 2024. Contact Jason Rivera with any questions or with your submission.



Here's a selection of current pieces on PA TIMES Online, covering a range of issues within the profession. We accept individual articles on a rolling basis; if you have a piece you think would fit our publication, submit it to [email protected] for consideration. (Please review our submission guidelines in advance!)



American Society for Public Administration
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Please send inquiries to Managing Editor Karen E. T. Garrett.