June 8, 2016

ASPA Website | PA Times.org | ASPA Blog

In This Issue:

PA TIMES Magazine Spring Edition Released!

The spring 2016 edition of PA TIMES magazine has been mailed and is now available on ASPA’s website. We hope you enjoy your latest installment of public administration articles from some of the leading names in the discipline.

This edition focuses on disaster management and includes a number of highlights around this topic, including:

  • The Flint Water Crisis: Looking Back ... and Ahead
  • One-on-One with Admiral Thad Allen
  • Decreasing Future Spending for Major Disaster Declarations
  • Obama’s Last Budget Scales Up Evidence Agenda

The edition also features an interview with Section on Transportation Policy and Administration Chair Chad Miller, coverage of ASPA’s 2016 Annual Conference and an overview of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and their impact on public administration.

Make the most of this edition’s informative content and learn more about what's going on across the discipline.

We hope you enjoy this quarter’s magazine. Look for the summer edition in a few months.

ASPA Hosts Rutgers Students for Summer Internships, Washington Exposure

ASPA is again hosting two Rutgers University Masters students at its Washington, D.C., headquarters to gain nonprofit/association experience through summer internships while enjoying everything our nation’s capital has to offer.

Huiqi Li and Xiaoyang Xu, both MPA students, are assisting ASPA staff with a variety of projects, including marketing, membership and events programming.

Huiqi Li comes to ASPA with research, publication, editorial, social media and events management experience and is working to expand those skills as she works with ASPA’s communications and marketing department on a number of initiatives taking place this summer.

Xiaoyang Xu brings to ASPA her experience as a peer advisor, tour guide, admissions ambassador and mentor, and is working with ASPA’s membership department this summer on a number of programs while she learns more about the nonprofit sector.

Both Xiaoyang and Huiqi have a passion for public policy and are excited to see it in action through the lens of ASPA as a professional society. ASPA staff are excited to have them and are looking forward to getting to know them better as they progress through the summer.

Webinars, BookTalks and Student Series on the Horizon

ASPA's professional development webinars are ongoing throughout the year. Averaging 85 attendees per webinar and free to ASPA members, these e-learning opportunities provide you with valuable insights and information at your fingertips. Here's a quick look at upcoming opportunities. Make sure you register today for sessions that interest you and visit our website to review further details about all upcoming webinars and BookTalks.

Webinar: Managing Technology Risk—Cybersecurity and Beyond
Thursday, June 16, 1 p.m.
Marc Pfeiffer, Bloustein Local Government Research Center, Rutgers University

While there are specific benefits to implementing the latest technological innovations, like most organizations, government agencies face challenges managing the risks associated. A new report from Rutgers University details the problems of juggling technology's benefits in the face of cybersecurity, legal, operational, financial, reputational and societal risks and recommends top municipal officials create and maintain an environment of “technological proficiency” to manage such risks. This webinar will review the critical elements associated with establishing technological proficiency in your organization.

Webinar: American Politics in the Age of Ignorance: Why Policymakers Choose Belief over Research
Tuesday, June 21, 1 p.m.
David Schultz, Hamline University

Increasingly, lawmakers feel their way through policy deliberations, letting their emotions drive their decisionmaking. When they do use data to make decisions, they choose sources they know will support their beliefs. Why is this? Personal preferences? An overflow of information? Is a personal agenda or a district project driving their choices? This webinar will look at decisionmaking and the effects belief-based decisions have on the state of public administration.

Student Series: Resumes, Resumes, Resumes—Marketing Yourself on the Page
Tuesday, June 28, 1 p.m.
William Shields, Jr., Executive Director, American Society for Public Administration
Angela Kline (Moderator), ASPA National Council Student Representative and Ph.D. Student, University of Delaware

Students and professionals alike, our popular resume webinar is back! There are different perspectives and views on resumes—what should be on them, what should not, how long they should be, what they should cover, to name a few. The answers you get depend on whom you ask. What cannot be disputed is its importance. Your resume introduces you to a potential employer, sells your skills and attributes to that employer and hopefully gets you to the next step. There is no cookie cutter approach to resumes, but there are rights and wrongs. ASPA executive director Bill Shields will explain.

BookTalk: Public Participation for 21st Century Democracy
Tuesday, July 12, 1 p.m.
Matt Leighninger, Deliberative Democracy Consortium
Tina Nabatchi, Maxwell School of Government, Syracuse University

Written by two leaders in the field, Public Participation for 21st Century Democracy explores the theory and practice of public participation in decisionmaking and problemsolving. It examines how public participation developed over time to include myriad thick, thin and conventional opportunities, occurring in both face-to-face meetings and online settings. The book offers a practical framework for thinking about how to engage citizens effectively and clear explanations of participation scenarios, tactics and designs. Make plans now to participate!
Brought to you through the generous support of Routledge.

Section Journals Offer Opportunities, Exposure

Did you know that ASPA Sections publish 18 journals throughout the year? While some are bigger than others, these journals and their research provide tremendous benefits to ASPA members and their focus areas. Journals and their related Sections are as follows:

  • American Review of Public Administration
    Section on Public Administration Research
  • Chinese Public Administration Review
    Section on Chinse Public Administration
  • Complexity, Governance and Networks
    Section on Complexity and Network Studies
  • Criminal Justice Review
    Section on Criminal Justice Administration
  • International Public Management
    Section on International and Comparative Administration
  • Journal of Health and Human Services Administration
    Section on Health and Human Services
  • Journal of Public Affairs Education
    Section on Public Affairs Education
  • Journal of Public Administration and Theory
    Section on Public Law and Administration
  • Journal of Public Management and Social Policy
    Conference of Minority Public Administrators
  • Public Administration and Development
    Section on International and Comparative Administration
  • Public Administration Quarterly
    Section on Professional and Organizational Development
  • Public Budgeting and Finance
    Section of Association of Budgeting and Financial Management
  • Public Integrity
    Section on Ethics and Integrity in Governance
  • The Public Manager
    Section for Public Management Practice
  • Public Performance and Management Review
    Section on Public Performance and Management
  • Public Voices
    Section on Historic, Artistic and Reflective Expression
  • Review of Public Personnel Administration
    Section on Personnel Administration and Labor Relations
  • State and Local Government Review
    Section on Intergovernmental Administration and Management

Each journal has its own publication rotation, editorial board and policies regarding accepting submissions, so for more information about each of these journals, take a look at the Section list on ASPA's website and contact the Sections directly. If you need help finding contact information, please contact ASPA chapter-section coordinator Melissa Jun for assistance.

Want to add an event? Email Melissa Jun with the details!

Georgia State Offers Master’s Level Course in Treasury and Investment Management this July

Registration is open for Georgia State’s Center for State and Local Finance’s (CSLF) executive education course in treasury and investment management, which will be held July 13-15 in Atlanta. The Master’s level training explores the treasury function, introducing strategies to balance cash availability with efficient asset returns. Topics will include cash flow strategy, banking and investment policies, as well as relationships with banks and brokers. Participants will leave class ready to deploy best practices that help ensure their agency or government manages financial risks successfully.

Ronald Shelby, former director of finance and administration for Galveston County, Texas, is the lead faculty member for the course. Experts in the field will be available for class discussions and networking, as well critiquing final projects. The three-day course also covers key content tested by the Government Finance Officer Association’s treasury and investment management exam, one of the five exams required for the CPFO certification. Participants can earn up to 24 CPE credits for this course through the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.

Registration is open until July 6. For more information, visit CSLF’s website or contact the center at [email protected] or 404-413-0098. The training is sponsored by JPMorgan Chase.

NECoPA 2016 Proposal Deadline Extended

Due to the level of interest in submitting proposals, the Northeastern Conference on Public Administration (NECoPA) has extended the deadline for proposal submissions to Aug. 15. This year’s conference, hosted by Penn State Harrisburg School of Public Affairs, Nov. 11-13, will focus on the theme, "Public Administration in the Era of Collaboration".

Please submit your proposal (250 words) as an email attachment together with a title, biographical sketch and contact information to Conference Chair Dr. Bing Ran. Visit NECoPa's website for full information. You can also find NECoPA on Facebook.

Federal Reserve System Community Development Research Conference—Call for Papers

The Community Affairs Officers of the Federal Reserve System are now inviting paper submissions for the 10th biennial Federal Reserve System Community Development Research Conference, a unique event that aims to bridge the gaps between research, policy and practice on key issues facing the country. Taking place March 23-24, 2017, in Washington, D.C., the conference will showcase high quality and emerging research that is presented in a dialogue with policymakers and community practitioners who can utilize the lessons gleaned from the research. The 2017 conference seeks to inform a robust public conversation on the theme, "Strong Foundations: The Economic Futures of Kids and Communities." Submissions for plenary, concurrent and poster sessions are invited in three broad categories:

  • The context for child and youth development
  • The role of community development and key partners and
  • Implications for the economy and workforce

Abstracts are due Aug. 19, 2016. You can view the full call for papers online here. If you have any questions about the conference or the Call for Papers, please contact [email protected] or 612-204-6785.

Welcome to New Members!
Click here to view recent new ASPA members!

PAR Update

Speak Your Mind
“Speak Your Mind” is a PAR webpage feature that allows you to offer insights about big questions in public administration. The responses serve as a community forum for discussion of specific editorial contributions, and the format provides a platform for exchange of different ideas about how we think of public administration as a professional and scholarly enterprise.

Moving Toward an Open Research Culture in Public Administration
Transparent reporting, replications and open data are vital for scientific progress and developing useful knowledge for practice. However, public administration is not fully transparent (for instance, null effects are seldom published), replications are almost never conducted, let alone published, and few open datasets are available. We do not have a fully open research culture. In this article, Lars Tummers (Utrecht University) first argues that this is problematic. Second, he shows how we can make progress. At the moment, we are facing a collective action problem: the research community would benefit if we promote an open research culture, but individual scholars lack incentives. One fruitful way to move forward is for journals like Public Administration Review to step in and actively promote values like transparency, openness and replication. This can be done by adopting—in a thoughtful and nuanced way—the recently developed Transparency and Openness Promotion (TOP) guidelines for journals. Link to Speak Your Mind

Research Articles
Nonprofit Policy Advocacy under Authoritarianism

Despite the increasing volume and significance of research on nonprofit advocacy, most studies have focused on the phenomenon only in Western countries. Hui Li (University of Southern California), Carlos Wing-Hung Lo (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong) and Shui-Yan Tang (University of Southern California) expand the scope of the literature by examining the advocacy activities of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in authoritarian China. The article focuses on three aspects of advocacy behavior: advocacy investment and use of insider and outsider tactics. Data analyses of an original nationwide survey of 267 environmental NGOs and semi-structured interviews with 30 individuals highlight how resource and institutional factors—government funding, government affiliation, foundation funding and peer collaborations—shape NGO advocacy in China. The findings also suggest ways in which institutional actors may enhance NGOs’ capacity for policy advocacy. Link to PAR Early View

Policy Positions of Bureaucrats at the Front Lines: Are They Susceptible to Strategic Communication?

It is well established that bureaucrats’ implementation of policies is influenced by their own policy positions, that is, their attitudes toward the given policies. However, what affects the policy positions of bureaucrats? Simon Calmar Andersen and Morten Jakobsen (Aarhus University, Denmark) focus on whether the policy positions of bureaucrats at the front lines of government are susceptible to frames and cues embedded in communication. Based on the notion that bureaucrats often adhere to certain professional norms when developing their attitudes toward policies, the authors hypothesize that communication frames and cues that align policies with such norms move bureaucrats’ policy positions in favor of the policy. Results of four studies in European and American settings among mid- and street-level bureaucrats show support for the hypothesized effect. They also show that aligning policies with dimensions outside professional norms is ineffective, possibly even producing opposite effects. Link to PAR Early View

Performance in Public Organizations: Clarifying the Conceptual Space

Performance in public organizations is a key concept that requires clarification. Based on a conceptual review of research published in 10 public administration journals, Lotte Bøgh Andersen (Aarhus University, Denmark; Danish Institute for Local and Regional Government Research, Denmark), Andreas Boesen (Aarhus University, Denmark) and Lene Holm Pedersen (Copenhagen Business School, Denmark; Danish Institute for Local and Regional Government Research, Denmark) propose six distinctions to describe the systematic differences in performance criteria: From which stakeholder's perspective is performance being assessed? Are the criteria formal or informal? Are the criteria subjective? Which process focus and product focus do they have, if any? What is the unit of analysis? Based on these distinctions, the performance criteria of existing studies used in an empirical review of management and performance are classified. The results illustrate how a systematization of the conceptual space of performance in public organizations can help researchers select what to study and what to leave out with greater accuracy while also bringing greater clarity to public debates about performance. Link to PAR Early View

Conceptualizing and Explaining Bureauphobia: Contours, Scope and Determinants

Several studies have described a perspective among citizens that entails a negative image of public administration or civil servants that persists even after positive encounters and experiences. However, this ambivalent attitude has rarely been studied empirically. Eloísa del Pino, Inés Calzada (Spanish National Research Council, Spain) and José M. Díaz-Pulido (Complutense University, Spain) refer to this attitude as “bureauphobia” and seek to enhance the existing literature through an analysis of its scope and root causes in Spain. The article analyzes two surveys conducted in 2009 and 2010, elaborating two alternative measures of bureauphobia. The results are similar regardless of the survey used and the specific operationalization of the concept: more than 20 percent of each sample exhibits a perspective that combines a negative image of public administration and satisfaction with its performance. A general attitude of distrust stands out among the variables associated with bureauphobia. Substantial regional variation is evident in the extent of the phenomenon. Link to PAR Early View

Local Officials’ Support for PILOTs/SILOTs: Nonprofit Engagement, Economic Stress and Politics

Nonprofit property tax exemption has become a major policy issue as the collapse of the housing market, the Great Recession and property tax caps have threatened local tax collections. Consequently, many local governments have sought to obtain payments in lieu of taxes (PILOTs) from charities that are formally exempt from property taxes. Using a 2010 survey of local government officials in Indiana, Kellie McGiverin-Bohan, Kirsten Grønbjerg (Indiana University, Bloomington), with Lauren Dula (Indiana University, Bloomington), and Rachel Miller (Mathematica Policy Research) examine whether support for PILOT policies is related to officials’ personal involvement with nonprofits, their views on government–nonprofit relationships, the type of position they hold, the level of economic distress in the county, local political conditions and local nonprofit wealth. The findings support most of these hypotheses but also show that attitudes toward PILOTs appear to be shaped by somewhat different concerns than attitudes toward services in lieu of taxes (SILOTs). Link to PAR Early View

Red Tape: Developing and Validating a New Job-Centered Measure

Red tape studies typically focus on burdensome rules that have negative effects on organizations, as perceived by managers. The one-item general red tape scale is representative of this approach. However, scholars have called for improved measures that address the scale's shortcomings. Nina M. van Loon (Aarhus University, Denmark), Peter M. Leisink, Eva Knies (Utrecht University, The Netherlands) and Gene A. Brewer (The University of Georgia) introduce a new measurement scale that features (1) red tape as a two-dimensional construct that includes compliance burden and lack of functionality and (2) a job-centered approach that measures red tape as experienced by employees in their jobs rather than more generally in the organization. A set of survey questions derived from interviews with government employees was validated using data from 1,203 government employees. The findings indicate that the two-dimensional job-centered red tape scale is reliable and valid. The authors conclude that this measure can improve research and be used by managers for a “quick scan” to detect the location and severity of red tape. Link to PAR Early View

New on PA Times Online

Every Tuesday and Friday, ASPA publishes a curated collection of original content that covers public service, management and international affairs.

For issues being published in the second quarter of 2016, we welcome submissions that focus on millennial changes and implications for governance models. Send us your submissions now! The deadline is rolling; contact us for more information.

Check out our recent articles and columns:

The Monthly Managers Meeting

Orange Doesn’t Have to be the New Black

New on the ASPA Blog

Looking for interesting commentary on news events and contemporary issues? Check out the ASPA Blog, which features a collection of authors writing on everyday life from the eyes of a public manager, student or young professional.

Featured recently on the Blog:

Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Federalism, States’ Rights and Citizens

Putting Things Straight

Career Resources

Find your next career opportunity at publicservicecareers.org. This online job board is the perfect resource for making a career change or landing your first job in the public sector. It lists dozens of positions in academia, government and the nonprofit sector. Below are examples of current listings.

Senior Associate, State Budget Policy, State Fiscal Health – The Pew Charitable Trusts, Washington, DC

Analyst, Scorekeeping – Congressional Budget Office, Washington, DC

Director, Policy and Partnerships – Alameda County Community Food Bank, Oakland, CA

American Society for Public Administration
1730 Rhode Island Ave., NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20036

Please send inquiries to Managing Editor Karen E. T. Garrett.