Friday, January 13, 2012
Articles from across the Web that we found interesting, the week of January 09, 2012 Weekly Round-up, WRU.
  • Mobile: A Moving Target. At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Federal CIO Steven VanRoekel laid out a "Roadmap for Federal Mobility."  Included in the initiative is an ideation platform though which citizens can join the discussion on formulating the federal mobility strategy.
  • Grading the Prognosticators. Early in the year, experts like to make predictions, but how often do we go back and see if those prognostications panned out?  Here are the trends that Clay Johnson saw emerging exactly one year ago today.  How did he do? Related: And how are we doing right now? Take a look at the "State of the Federal Web Report"
  • Questioning Practicioners. The State Department's Senior Advisor for Innovation, Alec Ross, sat down in front of the cameras to take questions from social media users. Mashable has the announcement, GOV.Aol has the recap.

John Kamensky

  • Delivering Government Through Mobile Phones.  According to Federal Computer Week, the federal CIO, Steve Van Roekel, announced this past week a national dialogue to design the federal government’s approach to using mobile phone technology to better deliver services to citizens, and to engage citizens in meaningful ways.  The dialogue ends on January 20th, so if you have ideas, join the discussion!.
  • New SES Rating System.  The Office of Personnel Management released an update of SES performance rating standards, noting:  “agencies will be able to rely upon a more consistent and uniform framework to communicate expectations and evaluate the performance of SES members.”  The press notes that the new system applies the core competencies to enter the SES to now be the key assessment elements for being a successful performer (probably a no-brainer to most people).

    But the 13-page guidance memo references a complicated point scale of 500 points to be allocated among at least five levels, using five criteria, based on some pretty broad assessment language (e.g., “Designs and implements strategies that maximize employee potential, connects the organization horizontally and vertically, and fosters high ethical standards in meeting the organization's vision, mission, and goals.”). . . . so it will be interesting to see how it gets implemented. 

  • A Guide to Downsizing Government.  The Cato Institute has created a new website “” to offer its department-by-department insights on what could be cut to save money.  Some examples:  end airport subsidies and privatize air traffic control; cut student aid because of high levels of fraud and it contributes to tuition inflation; end federal support for unemployment insurance and let states go on their own.   Meanwhile, Government Executive magazine is running a series on what various presidential candidates are promising to do to government if they are elected. . . . Meanwhile, next month GAO will come out with another one of its statutorily-mandated reports on duplicative and overlapping government programs.
  • Obama Trade Reorg Plan.  According to The Hill, Obama will announce today the merger of six agencies into the Department of Commerce as a way to save $3 billion and streamline trade policy and delivery.  Will Congress go along by allowing independent agencies such as the Export-Import Bank and the Small Business Administration be included?

The Business of Government Radio Show: Gene Dodaro, Comptroller General, U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) 

Federal News Radio 1500-AM 
Mondays at 11 a.m., Wednesdays at 12 p.m., Fridays at 2  p.m. 

The Business of Government Hour features a conversation about management with a government executive who is changing the way government does business. The executives discuss their careers and the management challenges facing their organizations.

As Comptroller General, Mr. Gene L. Dodaro helps oversee the development and issuance of hundreds of reports and testimonies each year to various committees and individual Members of Congress.

Broadcast Schedule: The show airs Monday, January 16, at 11 a.m., Wednesday, January 18, at noon, and Thursday, January 19, at 2:00 PM on Federal News Radio 1500AM WFED

If you can't wait, though, you can listen to (or download) this week's program and all our previous interviews at and by searching our audio archives.