Learn the latest public administration news in today's edition of The Bridge!

December 8, 2021

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ASPA 2022 Annual Conference Begins in 100 Days!

ASPA's 2022 Annual Conference, taking place in Jacksonville, Florida, March 18-22, begins in just 100 days! Conference proposal notices will be distributed in the coming weeks and we are very excited to showcase the sessions that will take place.

As we start counting down to this premier event of the year—and the first in-person event we have hosted since 2019—here are just a few things you can expect:

  • 130 concurrent sessions throughout this five day in-person event
  • Six plenary sessions including the Donald C. Stone Lecture, the Elliott Richard Lecture, the Nesta M. Gallas Lecture and more!
  • The annual Gloria Hobson Nordin Social Equity Luncheon
  • SWPA’s National Awards Breakfast
  • Five Founders’ Fellows panels
  • A fun—outdoor!—Welcome Reception
In short: Everything you know and love about the Annual Conference!

Knowing these remain uncertain times, we are planning for a conference experience that places your health, safety and security at the forefront of our efforts. To support those plans, we have adopted a number of robust health policies for the conference. Among them:
  • Proof of full vaccination is required to attend #ASPA2022
  • Masks will be required for all indoor activities
  • Social distancing and adequate spacing will be promoted and encouraged as much as possible
  • Flexible refund/transfer options are available should you be unable to join us
Full details are on our website. Review them closely and think about how you can do your part to make the 2022 conference a terrific and safe experience for all. (Have more questions? Visit our FAQ page for our answers!)

For those ready to register, our 2022 rates are lower than past years to support those on tighter budgets:
  • Student/New Professional Member Rate: $199
  • Member Launch Rate: $399
  • Member Regular Rate: $449
  • Member Onsite Rate: $549
  • Member One-Day Rate: $209
View our website for nonmember rates and more details, including our flexible refund/transfer policy. And, if you've enjoyed our options to sponsor a student in the past, contact us and we can help you do so again for 2022.

We have released a basic schedule on our website as well as our sponsorship packages. Review the options and contact us to book your package and ensure your branding is on display in front of your peers and colleagues!

You can find more information on our website, including a link to register. Send your vaccination cards to [email protected], and we will look forward to seeing you in Jacksonville this March!

Use the following links to view the 2022 Annual Conference Events Code of Conduct, health and safety policies and liability waiver.


E-Learning at Your Fingertips

ASPA staff work tirelessly to keep your skills up to date and the information flowing all year long through our e-learning program. Visit our website to see more details about upcoming KeepingCurrent, BookTalk and Students and New Professionals series programming. Members, visit our webinar archives to catch up on what you have missed!

KeepingCurrent: A Grand Challenge: Developing Solutions and Institutions to Ensure Equitable and Sustainable Water Access in the Face of a Changing Climate
Sponsored by the University of New Mexico
December 9 | 1 p.m. EST
Bob Perciasepe, Senior Advisor, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions
Alex Webster, Research Assistant Professor, University of New Mexico

In this fireside chat, we will explore critical considerations in balancing the need for water to support communities' agricultural, social, cultural and economic vitality, given the ongoing drought and evolving impacts from climate change. The role of institutions, governance and technology also will be explored. There are potential impacts on states' economies from agriculture to industry. The implications are more profound as access to clean water is a central environmental justice and social equity issue. For traditional communities, especially Native American and traditional Hispano, the cultural role of flows through communities has broad cultural and food and health implications. Significant action is currently underway in Congress for infrastructure investments to help address these issues. The funding itself will raise important governance/administration questions about how funds will be allocated effectively and spent. Another consideration to be explored is the adaptation of water allocation and management institutions created under 19th- and 20th-century assumptions of a static climate to the challenges of a changing climate in a world in which water can no longer be reliably managed based on assumptions from the past. What are the new assumptions, and what will be needed for rural and indigenous communities, vulnerable to climate change impacts, to retain their cohesion and well-being?

KeepingCurrent: Lessons in Accountability from the Pandemic
Sponsored by ASPA's Center for Accountability and Performance
December 14 | 1 p.m. EST
Katherine Barrett, Principle, Barrett and Greene, Inc.
Dan Chenok, Moderator, Executive Director, IBM Center for the Business of Government
Richard Greene, Principle, Barrett and Greene, Inc. and chair of the Center for Accountability and Performance
Donald F. Kettl, Professor Emeritus and Former Dean of the University of Maryland School of Public Policy

“Accountability is often the first casualty in a crisis—even when governments know the results of their efforts,” according to a new report published by the IBM Center for the Business of Government. This webinar, hosted by ASPA’s Center for Accountability and Performance (CAP), features the three authors of the report titled “Managing the Next Crisis: Twelve Principles for Dealing with Viral Uncertainty” and will focus on the importance of accountability in a crisis—like the pandemic—and the complexities of holding individuals or institutions accountable in this and any other time. Some of the solutions to be explored include coming to a consensus about the problem and developing measurements of performance that determine success or failure without placing broad-scale blame on any individual player involved.

Calling All Authors! PA TIMES Online Now Accepting Applications

ASPA is seeking authors for PA TIMES Online for 2022. If you are reading the nuanced articles we publish through this online forum, you know our authors provide the profession with new concepts, idea starters, thoughtful research updates and valued commentary. Now is your chance to apply to join our list of columnists or invite one of your colleagues to do so!

We are looking for columnists who can write about a range of subjects. Topics include:

  • Infrastructure and technology
  • Emergency management
  • Energy and the environment
  • Revitalization of the middle class
  • Social equity
  • The impacts of COVID-19
  • Public finance measures
  • Volunteerism
  • Procurement and supply chain management
  • Federalism in the 21st century
  • Evidence based decisionmaking
  • Local government administration challenges
Open rotations include year-long quarterly columns and monthly columns for the first half of the year. (Publication deadlines will be provided by the PA TIMES Online editorial team.)

Interested in being considered? Submit an application, including a sample column, for review. First-time authors and students are welcome to apply!

All applications must be submitted by December 17, 2021 for consideration.


Last Week to Vote!

Voting in ASPA's 2021-2022 election closes this Sunday, December 12, at 11:59 p.m. EST. Make sure you cast your ballot now to vote for the individuals you most want to serve in ASPA's leadership positions.

This year, the following positions are open for election:

  • District Representative (for Districts I, II, III, IV and V) who will serve a three-year term representing their electoral District within the United States.
  • Candidates for Student Representative who will serve a one-year term representing Student and New Professional members of ASPA.
Click here to learn more about the candidates running for office.

You will need your ASPA login information to vote. Please contact ASPA's membership department at [email protected] or (202) 585-4308 for assistance.

This is your opportunity to engage in ASPA's democratic process and choose who will represent your needs and concerns on the National Council and beyond. Vote by Sunday, December 12!


2021 Annual Conference Videos Available Online

If you attended the 2021 Annual Conference online this past April, you now may log in to our website and access more than 90 hours of content from that event! The conference website we used to host the event expired over the summer, but we have retained the most popular videos and have archived them for ongoing use. You will find:

  • More than 60 hours of concurrent sessions
  • Founders’ Fellows panels
  • Plenaries
  • Presidential Panels
There are a few final videos that will be posted in the coming weeks and we will add to this archive as time permits.

Only those who registered for the 2021 conference may access this content. Take a look now and enjoy this ongoing resource!


"Leading Through DEI" at the Price School

Throughout October, the University of Southern California Price Executive Education kicked off a major initiative to support public service executives and senior administrators within the diversity, equity and inclusion space. "Leading Through DEI" was an intensive nine-session program aimed to provide skills at the individual, team and organizational levels and allow time to pause and reflect.

The program was designed to be action-focused with presenters including public service executives and leading scholars and consultants in the field and across the United States. Participants were from four different states and included a chief of staff, legislative staff, county and city senior administrators, and nonprofit and behavioral health leaders.

“Structural racism has a detrimental effect on what we in the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office hold most sacred: public safety,” District Attorney George Gascón said. “It’s paramount that all working groups, particularly those in public service, develop and hone their leadership values with the goal of building stronger pipelines to racial and social diversity. USC Price’s 'Leading Through Diversity, Equity and Inclusion' program has helped move my office forward in furthering these crucial efforts.”

About this program specifically, LaVonna Blair Lewis, associate dean for diversity, equity and inclusion, shared, “We miss the very best of the people we get to work with and for when we don’t give them a chance to be really seen and heard. We must focus our attention on DEI work if we ever hope to close the gaps that we all feel to some degree.”

"Leading Through DEI" takes many layers. The October 2021 program focused on why DEI matters in public service, doing the work: a mindful approach to DEI, cultural humility, social equity and ethics, empathy in professional settings, leading with courage and appreciative communication. Future offerings will include alternative topics and an expanded presentation team to reflect the breadth and depth of the field.

“There is no more important work than public service. We are proud to offer this program to support those who model, inspire and lead the way every day,” said Paul Danczyk, director of executive education.

Click here for more information about the presenters from October's event, or for more information about this February's program including registration details.

2022 Transatlantic Dialogue Call for Papers

The 16th Transatlantic Dialogue (TAD16), an annual conference bridging scholarly communities on either side of the Atlantic Ocean, will take place June 9-11, 2022, in Roskilde (Denmark). Co-sponsored by ASPA, the European Group for Public Administration/International Institute of Administrative Sciences and Rutgers University, we are pleased to join with our European counterparts to support this event and the scholarly communities it enhances.

Under this year's theme, “Strategic Management of Public Sector Transformation in Turbulent Times: Enhancing Collaborative Governance and Co-creation of Public Value," TAD16 will organize a broad range of workshops led by pairs of American and European scholars:

  • Building capacities for collaborative governance and co-creation through strategic management
  • Enhancing public performance through interagency and cross-sector collaboration
  • Public innovation through networks of public and private actors: theory and practice
  • Improving the performance of contracts, procurement and public-private partnerships
  • Co-creating public value outcomes with citizens and voluntary organizations
  • Public leadership and motivation in public value production
  • Designing institutional platforms and arenas for collaborative governance and co-creation
  • Political leadership and policy entrepreneurship in a turbulent world of collaborative governance
  • Democratic legitimacy and accountability in collaborative governance arrangements
This event also will feature several keynote speeches, a roundtable discussion of public governance responses to COVID-19 and a fun social event. More details will be provided as the schedule evolves.

Please review the Call for Papers now and submit your abstract by March 1, 2022. All registrations are due by May 10, 2022.

Find more details on the TAD16 website and we'll look forward to seeing you in Roskilde in June 2022!


White House Releases Social Equity Plan

The White House recently released a strategic plan to advance diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility (DEIA) in the federal workforce. It offers a roadmap for implementing President Biden's June 2021 executive order in support of these initiatives and lays out key steps agencies can take to strengthen DEIA in their workforce policies, practices and culture.

As listed in its executive summary, the plan:

  • Provides vision and mission statements
  • Establishes five operating principles to advance and sustain DEIA within agencies
  • Further outlines the DEIA priorities expressed in the executive order
  • Details strategies for advancing DEIA
  • Provides an example maturity model to support growth
  • Outlines steps to create a comprehensive framework to address workplace harassment
  • Explains next steps for advancing DEIA
We will continue to provide information about this important initiative as more details are released.

Find the full plan online here.


Public Integrity: Special Issue on Qualitative Methods as Liberatory Tools

Public administration in academia remains mired in quests for legitimacy, often confused by ontological, epistemological and methodological suppositions rooted in different ways of knowing. Many of these debates remain at the “philosophy of science” level, leaving a gap in our knowledge about not just “doing methods” well but also how methodology and methods link to broader theoretical and practical discussions in the field. Contemporarily, numerous scholars are calling for a return to the field’s heart and soul: the citizen-state encounter, the power of tacit knowledge and the ability of stories and narratives to shape knowledge.

Yet a focus on the human dimensions of public administration requires centering the uniqueness of people’s experiences. Interactions with any public service entity are woven with differing conceptions and applications of ethics, accountability, equity, justice, legality and constitutionality, legitimacy, responsiveness, transparency and more. The methods we use must be up to the task of studying and sorting through these complex dimensions, especially through providing in-depth, detail-rich description and explanation of not only what phenomena are but also how and why they work the way that they do. Qualitative methods are essential for these goals.

This special issue seeks to foster a renewed focus on qualitative methods in public administration. Find the full call for papers online; proposals for papers should be submitted by January 9, 2022. An invitation to submit a full paper does not guarantee publication. All papers will be subject to Public Integrity’s standard double-blind peer review process. Please address any questions to special issue editors Staci Zavattaro, Sean McCandless, Ashley Nickels and Esteban Santis.

Tips and Resources

Quitting Your Job or Thinking About Joining the "Great Resignation"? Here’s What an Employment Lawyer Advises
A record number of Americans are quitting their jobs. But before you opt to join them, you should consider the risks and costs.

$75,000 Prize Competition Announced to Help Fight Disinformation on the Internet
The Aspen Institute is willing to shell out for the best ideas to fight dis- and misinformation.

With Omicron Comes Uncertainty. Here’s How to Handle It.
Experts share techniques to ease the mental toll of an evolving pandemic.

Coronavirus in the News
While you can find our usual assortment of news headlines from the past several weeks below, here are stories specific to the coronavirus that are noteworthy.


Public Service Social Equity


(Otherwise) in the News

Today's headlines contain plenty of news coverage of some of our nation's most pressing public administration challenges. ASPA has curated some of the most important stories from recent weeks. If you have not seen these yet, make sure you read them now!


Public Finance Public Service Social Equity


Members in the News

ASPA members are in the news in a variety of ways. If you have been featured, please send a link to the article to us and we will be happy to include it in a future newsletter.

How Will Classroom Culture Wars Figure in SC’s 2022 Contests?
ASPA Immediate Past President Kendra Stewart is quoted in this article.

Why Biden’s Presidential Management Agenda Is a Big Deal
By Don Kettl

Infrastructure Law’s Digital Equity Goals Are Key to Smart Cities That Work for Everyone
By Gregory Porumbescu

Grappling with the Public Sector Workforce Shortage Crush
By Katherine Barrett and Richard Greene

Welcome New ASPA Members!
Click here to view the most recent new ASPA members!

Around Public Administration

Here are the most recent updates from across the profession. Did we miss you? Send us your news and we'll include it in the next round!

Upcoming Events:

Calls for proposals and other updates:
  • SPAR Best Book Award Call for Nominations
    The ASPA Section on Public Administration Research (SPAR) invites your nominations for its Best Book Award. The Section welcomes nominations for books on public administration published in 2020 and 2021. All books must significantly contribute to research in public administration; all research methods are welcomed, as are books across any/all public administration research; edited volumes are welcomed; books primarily written as textbook will not be considered; the Section welcomes international publications written in English. This recognition will be awarded at ASPA's Annual Conference in March 2022. A nominating committee comprised of SPAR members will review each of the nominations and choose the award winners. All nominations are due by December 10, 2021. Nominations should list the book title, author and publisher, and include at least a one-page summary outlining the unique contributions of the book. Contact Robin Kempf for more information.

  • COMPA 2022 Annual Conference Call for Papers
    COMPA's 2022 Annual Conference Call for Papers is open, centered on this year's theme, "Shifting Paradigms—Challenging Assumptions." We will address the challenges facing minority public administrators in communities experiencing increasing inequalities; systemic racism; police violence coupled with racialism in legal and justice systems; housing crises and food shortages; medical mistrust; chronic underinvestment; environmental degradation; and white supremacist extremism. All of these problems and many others have been exacerbated by an ongoing global pandemic that has killed more than 1 million people as it intensifies racial/ethnic tensions and economic disparities. Communities across the globe are fighting the brutal consequences of climate change and environmental racism amidst hurricanes, droughts, fires and the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people. To add to the chaos, we have witnessed the widespread promotion of a lack of confidence, both internationally and domestically, in democratic governmental and administrative processes. Public administrators generally and minority public administrators in particular are in the process of adapting to the new realities while reconsidering the long held paradigms by which we live. There is a growing decline in public trust in news and information sources and a greater reliance on social media, a lack of confidence in the findings of scientific institutions, and an ever-increasing lack of faith in elected and appointed governmental leaders. The COVID-19 pandemic has been decisively marked by political divisions in the popular public trust of scientists. These realities have become a permanent element of the contemporary political discourse affecting minority public administrators and the levels of citizens' trust in the administration of public services. The current social, political and economic climate around bureaucracies, national and global, create a deluge of opportunities and challenges for the field of public administration. Minority public administrators are called upon to rethink our role as mitigators working amidst a rising sense of injustice and helplessness, the lack of hope and confidence in the present system, and a desire for radical change. This conference offers opportunities for public administration practitioners, academicians, independent scholars and students to expand the discourse through intellectual forums, research considerations and collaborative partnerships which tackle these challenges and restore public service values and meaningful governance. The conference program committee welcomes proposals to the conference's 15 tracks from academics, practitioners, independent scholars and students. Email your proposals to [email protected]. Proposals should include the title, abstract and presenter(s') name, institutional affiliation, address, email address and contact number. All papers are due by December 15, 2022. Click here for more information.

  • Journal of African Transformation Special Edition Call for Papers
    The journal invites papers and submissions for its special edition on the theme “Challenges and opportunities for curbing illicit financial flows to boost domestic resource mobilization for financing sustainable development in Africa." The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development identifies the reduction of illicit financial flows (IFFs) as a priority area to build peaceful societies around the world. Combating IFFs is a crucial component of global efforts to promote peace, justice and strong institutions, as reflected in target 16.4 of the Sustainable Development Goals; “By 2030, significantly reduce illicit financial and arms flows, strengthen the recovery and return of stolen assets and combat all forms of organized crime”. Key research questions for this special edition include: What is the nature of IFFs in different African countries?; How do IFFs impact the state and society in Africa?; What are the main challenges African countries are facing in effectively curbing IFFs?; What kind of reforms can African countries undertake in curbing IFFs?; How can digitalization and technological transformation create opportunities for curbing IFFs?; How can Africa take advantage of developments on the international stage with various initiatives aimed at curbing aspect of IFFs?; How can Africa overcome the challenges it is confronted with in recovering assets lost through IFFs?; and How can global coalition on addressing IFFs be foisted and strengthened in addressing the problem? All manuscripts are due by December 15, 2021. Click here for more information.

  • NFBPA 2022 National Awards
    The National Forum for Black Public Administrators (NFBPA) is accepting nominations for its 2022 National Awards and Recognition Program. Each year, a distinguished few are recognized at NFBPA's FORUM for their outstanding achievements and dedication to NFBPA, the communities they serve and the field of public administration. Now is your opportunity to nominate a worthy candidate for any of their national awards. All nominations are due by December 15, 2021. Click here for more information.

  • SASPA Mini-Symposium on Public Policy, Public and Nonprofit Administration
    The South Asian Section for Public Administration (SASPA) is partnering with the Bengal Institute of Political Studies and the Institute of Social Sciences (New Delhi) to assembly a mini symposium: Capacity Building for Effective Governance and Administration: Perspectives from South Asia. The online event will feature perspectives of South Asia scholars and practitioners on capacity building to revitalize administration, civil society and governance in that region. SASPA invites reflections on how systems of institutions, civil society groups and nonprofits can be revitalized and reconstituted, given new challenges. Papers may address capacity building in the context of institutional development, innovation, human resource management, organizational learning, strategic planning, public finance and budgeting and beyond. Please send a 200-word proposal to [email protected] by January 7, 2022. The symposium will take place via Zoom February 19-20. Click here to view more information.

  • NFBPA Annual Scholarship Program and Poster Contest Call for Applicants
    In 2022, the National Forum for Black Public Administrators (NFBPA) will continue its prestigious scholarship program, recognizing African American or other minority students who are currently enrolled full-time at an accredited, traditional four-year college or university, preferably an HBCU, who show outstanding scholarship and leadership, particularly as related to public service. NFBPA provides several scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students through its partnerships with corporate supporters, public sector organizations and individual contributors. The scholarship program is an integral part of NFBPA’s goal of lending support to African American and other minority students interested in leadership roles in public service. All applications are due by January 17, 2022. Click here for more information.

    The NFBPA student research poster contest will be held in conjunction with its Forum 2022. The competition recognizes research conducted by the students at all undergraduate, masters and doctorate levels. All students are encouraged to submit for this competition. All poster submissions are due by January 17, 2022. Click here for more information.

  • Flemming Awards Call for Nominations
    Please consider nominating a deserving federal employee for the 73rd annual Arthur S. Flemming Awards. The Arthur S. Flemming Award recognizes outstanding and meritorious achievement in working for the federal government; encourages the highest standards of performance in the federal service; enhances appreciation of our form of government and the opportunities and responsibilities it presents; and attracts outstanding individuals to a career in federal service. More than 500 people have received the awards to date. Eligibility is restricted to individuals currently engaged in federal government service and who have served 3-15 years. Similar employees of the Library of Congress, Government Accountability Office, Office of the Capitol Architect, Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, Government Printing Office and Botanical Gardens also are eligible. Only years directly on the federal payroll are considered service. Nominations will be accepted through January 31, 2022. Click here for more information.

  • STPA Student Paper Competition Call for Nominations
    ASPA's Section on Transportation Policy and Administration (STPA) invites undergraduate and graduate students who have written research papers related to transportation policy and administration to submit their papers for consideration. The review committee encourages students to submit copies of previously prepared research papers, conference papers and journal article manuscripts. Literature reviews and review essays are not eligible for consideration; papers co-authored with faculty members are not eligible. The best paper will receive a cash award of $250 and STPA will pay the conference registration fee for the awardee to attend ASPA's 2022 Annual Conference. The deadline for receiving papers is February 1, 2022. Please send papers or questions regarding this call to Jiseul Kim.

  • 2022 MPAC Call for Proposals
    The MPAC trustees invite all in the profession to submit a proposal for the 2022 Midwest Public Affairs Conference (MPAC). Individual paper, panel, roundtable and workshop proposals are welcome on all topics in public affairs; MPAC actively encourages submissions from faculty, students and practitioners. This year's theme is "Designing and Running the Innovative Public Service Agency." They invite proposals that explore public sector innovation, with an emphasis on connecting research insights to agency practice. MPAC prides itself on its diversity: In addition to theme-related papers they welcome proposals from a variety of PA-related fields such as urban affairs, public policy, nonprofit management and planning. Reviewers will accept proposals that entail research in progress, though they should have enough content to facilitate substantial participant discussion. The submission period opens immediately; acceptances are sent a rolling basis. All proposals are due by February 15, 2022. Click here for more information.

  • SPCM Best Paper Award
    The Section on Procurement and Contract Management (SPCM) has issued a Best Paper Award for ASPA's 2022 Annual Conference. Do you conduct research in public procurement, government contracting or contract management? Are you submitting a proposal for the conference? If so, submit your paper to SPCM for an award. First place will receive $500; second place will receive $250. Please send your full paper to Sawsan Abutabenjeh by March 1, 2022 for consideration. Click here for more information.

  • 2022 Annual E-PARCC Teaching Case and Simulation Competition
    The Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration (PARCC) at the Syracuse University Maxwell School invites submissions for its 16th annual E-PARCC competition to further stimulate the creation of effective and innovative teaching cases and simulations. E-PARCC, a project of the "Collaborative Governance Initiative," provides free online resources for those who teach conflict and collaboration around the world. More than 3,000 visitors per month from more than 40 different countries take advantage of E-PARCC teaching materials. The E-PARCC competition consists of two tracks: (1) collaborative problem solving, collaborative governance, and network governance and analysis, and (2) collaborative methods in international development. All entries are due by March 15, 2022. Click here for more information.



Here's a selection of current pieces on PA TIMES Online, covering a range of issues within the profession. We accept individual articles on a rolling basis; if you have a piece you think would fit our publication, submit it to [email protected] for consideration. (Please review our submission guidelines in advance!)


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