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This important report serves as an excellent companion piece to another published report, “Applying 21st-Century Government to the Challenge of Homeland Security,” by Elaine C. Kamarck of Harvard University. The Stanton report examines the organizational dilemma frequently faced by government: when to create or restructure a government agency or instrumentality. The Kamarck report examines three new forms of government that do not involve the creation of new government organizations or instrumentalities: reinvented government, government by network, and government by market. Read together, these two new reports provide valuable insights to public sector executives on how various tools and changes in government organizations can be applied to developing creative solutions and interventions to national problems.
The Stanton report is indeed timely. Recent days have seen the creation of a new government agency, the Transportation Security Administration, and the President’s proposal to create a Department of Homeland Security. In addition, the Federal Bureau of Investigation recently went through its own restructuring. Other government organizational changes have also been proposed by a variety of congressional committees and commissions to enhance the nation’s capacity to respond more effectively in the area of homeland security. Future days will clearly see increased interest in the important topic of government organization. We trust that the Stanton report will stimulate enlightened discussion about the creation or restructuring of government agencies and government instrumentalities in the years ahead.