Leadership Matters

The new administrator of the long-rudderless U.S. Agency for International Development is a real-time case study of how leadership matters. Rajiv Shah, 36, stepped into the job just five days before the devastating earthquake shattered Haiti. According to the Washington Post, Shah suddenly found himself designated the "unified disaster coordinator" and in meetings with the President in the Situation Room in the basement of the White House.

Health Care Reform Implementation (Part 1)

Government Executive’s Alyssa Rosenberg hits the nail on the head in her Fed Blog today, “How Health Care Would Be Run.” Her piece looks at the increased role of the Secretary of Health and Human Services in the Senate version of the bill. The House version has significant roles for other agencies as well, and creates a new independent agency, the Health Choices Administration.

Ask Employees How to Fix It

Optimists believe that two data points constitute a trend. So here’s a trend. Ask employees why things don’t work and how to fix them!

From Data to Decisions II: Building an Analytics Culture

In our 2011 report on analytics use in the federal government, "From Data to Decisions: The Power of Analytics," we wrote about the tremendous budget pressures federal agencies face at a time when there is great public demand for government to be more effective and efficient. This report’s release sparked an overwhelmingly positive response from agency leaders and federal performance management practitioners who asked, “Where do we go from here?

Moving Toward a More Capable Government: A Guide for Organizational Design

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.