Leadership Insights is ASPA's e-publication highlighting unique perspectives on timely public administration topics. It is designed to offer members a resource that is relevant, interesting and readable. Below is a catalog of the Insights that have been produced thus far; check back for future publications. All of these are available through the ASPA bookstore. Please click on the graphic to the right to order your free copy.

The Administrative Presidency and Fractious Federalism: Lessons from Obamacare

By Dr. Frank Thompson

Transformative in scope, the Affordable Care Act was heralded by many as the legacy-making accomplishment of President Obama's first term in office. Its implementation was criticized by just as many who singled out its haphazard and technologically flawed execution. In The Administrative Presidency and Fractious Federalism: Lessons from Obamacare, we proudly feature Frank Thompson, a renowned scholar on intergovernmental relations, policy implementation and health policy. Dr. Thompson explores the fascinating and often fragile relationship between the president and states with a special focus on the ACA.

ASPA offers this issue of Leadership Insights as a resource for our members specifically involved with implementation at the state and local level. More generally, we know that all those who work in or study the intergovernmental arena will have a keen interest in Thompson’s assessment of the state of federalism under the ACA.

About the Author:

Dr. Frank J. Thompson is a nationally renowned scholar of politics and administration, implementation, public management and health policy. In 2007, Thompson received a Robert Wood Johnson Investigator Award to study the evolution of Medicaid during the Clinton, George W. Bush and Obama administrations. The research led to his book, Medicaid Politics: Federalism, Policy Durability, and Health Reform, a thorough examination of the genesis and expansion of Medicaid and its impact on the American health care system.
Thompson is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, a past president of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration, and former executive director of the National Commission on State and Local Public Service (Winter Commission). He has received several awards, including ASPA’s Donald C. Stone Distinguished Scholar Award for his accomplishments in the field of intergovernmental relations and management. In 2008, Thompson joined the School of Public Affairs and Administration at Rutgers University-Newark and became an affiliated faculty member of the Rutgers Center for State Health Policy in New Brunswick. Prior to his tenure at Rutgers, he served as dean of the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at the University at Albany, State University of New York. Thompson is an alumnus of the University of Chicago where he earned his bachelor’s degree in political science and the University of California, Berkeley, where he received his doctoral and master’s degrees in the same discipline.

Reflections of Title IX

By Dr. Bernice Sandler

This issue of Leadership Insights features Dr. Bernice Sandler and Title IX, the historic legislation prohibiting discrimination in education on the basis of gender. Known as the ‘Godmother of Title IX,’ Dr. Sandler initially shared her reflections on the statute during ASPA’s Section on Women in Public Administration (SWPA) Awards Breakfast in March 2014.  Dr. Sandler has conducted groundbreaking research on gender and spoken widely on the "chilly climate," a term she coined, on the campuses of higher education institutions.
In this edition of Leadership Insights, she provides a historical and deeply personal reflection on the journey to get Title IX passed and its impact. Most commonly known as the "sports law," Dr. Sandler points out that the legislation was inspired by the discriminatory environments in higher education during the 1970s. Since then, it has led to wider implications, like athletics.

About the Author

Dr. Bernice Sandler is a senior scholar at the Women’s Research and Education Institute, where she consults with institutions and others about achieving equity for women. She played a major role in the development and passage of Title IX and other laws prohibiting gender discrimination in education, and has been associated with Title IX longer than any other person. The New York Times has referred to her as the “Godmother of Title IX.”
Sandler has a long list of firsts, having produced the first reports on campus sexual harassment, gang rape, campus peer harassment and the ways in which men and women are treated differently in the classroom. She was the first person appointed to a Congressional committee staff to work specifically on women’s issues and filed the first charges of sex discrimination against more than 250 institutions. Sandler has served on more than 30 boards and holds 10 honorary doctorates. She has been quoted in major media including The New York Times and Newsweek and has appeared on many talk shows.
Sandler holds a degree in counseling from the University of Maryland. She was the first chair of the now-defunct National Advisory Council on Women’s Educational Programs, having been appointed by Presidents Ford and Carter. She has taught counseling, and has worked as a psychologist, a research assistant, a nursery school teacher, a guitar instructor and, like many women, a secretary.

Presidential Leadership and Presidential Management

Presidential Leadership and Presidential Management features remarks from Elaine Kamarck, senior fellow at Brookings and a leading expert on government innovation. Originally presented at the 2014 ASPA Annual Conference, Kamarck’s remarks shed light on why implementation failures are the most devastating ones a president can have. She also tells us what presidents must do when leading complex implementation efforts. To be sure, many of the lessons she shares extend well beyond The White House, and into the work you do every day.

About the Author

Elaine C. Kamarck is a senior fellow in the Governance Studies program at Brookings and founding director of the Center for Effective Public Management. A public sector scholar, she has vast experience in government, politics and academia. Kamarck is an expert on government innovation and reform in the United States, OECD countries and developing countries.  She also focuses her research on the presidential nomination system and American politics. As a senior staffer in the White House she created the National Performance Review, the largest government reform effort in the last half of the 20th century. Following her White House service, she spent 15 years at Harvard University teaching government management and American politics.