IBM Center 2011 Call for Research Report Proposals

Since creation of the IBM Center for The Business of Government more than 13 years ago, it has been our goal to help public sector executives and managers address real-world problems by supporting leading researchers who produce empirical evidence to inform the debates about whether particular management approaches will improve government performance.

Seven Management Imperatives


Periodically the IBM Center staff steps back and reflects on the insights provided by its authors of more than 300 research reports and by some 300 senior government executives interviewed over the past 13 years.  Through our research and interviews, we identified several broad societal trends that we believe are changing the game for successful leadership at all levels of government.

Environmental Collaboration: Lessons Learned About Cross-Boundary Collaborations

While they find that many of the elements necessary for effective collaborative ventures are critical — such as a clear purpose, dedicated staff, and the willingness to be flexible — they conclude that a bilateral collaborative venture is often more effective when it has a formal legal structures in place that enhance its legitimacy in the eyes of various stakeholders. Informal collaborations are often useful precursors to more formal efforts. These informal

The Promise of Collaborative Voluntary Partnerships: Lessons from the Federal Aviation Administration

Based on his extensive research on the three programs, Mills concludes that although the programs can be improved, they are making a worthwhile contribution to airline safety. Mills argues that collaborative voluntary partnerships should be viewed as a complement to agency regulatory activities rather than as a replacement for the traditional command-and-control approach to regulation.

Strategies for Supporting Frontline Collaboration: Lessons from Stewardship Contracting

Dr. Moseley shows how via a series of case studies examining the experiences of the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service in implementing stewardship contracts.  She found that leaders in these agencies were able to change the behaviors of their hierarchically-driven culture by using four strategies to foster collaboration:  (1) creating time and space for collaboration, (2) changing agency rules to encourage collaboration, (3) providing staff incentives to collaborate, and (4) building the capacity to collaborate in both the agency as well as among stakeholders.


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