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

October 25, 2023

ASPANet.org | PA TIMES.org

ASPA Annual Awards Program Nominations Period Closes This Friday, October 27

ASPA’s annual awards program is a once-a-year opportunity to nominate someone to be recognized as one of public administration's most dedicated public servants. This year's nomination period ends this Friday, October 27. Who will you nominate?

Do you know: a current or former city official who has dedicated themselves to the public good; an unsung scholar who produces excellent research; a public official who has stood up for equity and integrity in government; or someone who has bridged the academic/practitioner divide and encouraged best practices as a result?

Of course you do! Nominate them for an award by this Friday!

Each award we present is a tremendous honor bestowed on those exhibiting excellence in public service, given out at the Annual Conference. And remember: While some awards require the honoree to be an ASPA member, not all of them do. City managers, local government service providers, public health advocates, nonprofit executives, organizations and more are eligible and our committees look forward to considering a wide range of nominees.

Every year more than 30 public servants and scholars are recognized by ASPA across 20 awards categories as exemplifying the best of public administration, but only those who are nominated can be considered! Review ASPA's awards program details and get to work on your nomination/submission now.

There are only two days left to submit your nomination. Contact ASPA Governance and Program Associate Jordan Thomas with any questions or for more information.

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 Student and New Professional series programming.

KeepingCurrent: Making the Most of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law
October 31 | 1 p.m. EDT
Sponsored by the Center for Accountability and Performance

Robert Blaine, Senior Executive and Director, Center for Leadership, Education, Advancement, and Development (LEAD), National League of Cities
Toni Samuel, Moderator, CAP Board Member and Special Projects Director, National League of Cities

Marking the three-year anniversary of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, this session will focus on how cities and towns have performed, and how they addressed accountability for the funds in their local infrastructure projects. The panelists also will discuss what the National League of Cities has accomplished through initiatives, training and resources to support performance and accountability for the infrastructure funding. Key to this work has been the development of the Local Infrastructure Hub (LIH), a national program that aims to bring resources and expert advice to the nation's cities and towns in order to help them access infrastructure funding and use it to help residents get optimal results from these federal dollars. Specific areas that will be addressed during the webinar include the structure of the LIH, LIH program goals, LIH’s alignment with efforts to ensure that 40 percent of these investments help with the environment and benefit disadvantaged communities—dubbed Justice 40—and a demonstration of LIH's Equity Dashboard.

Students and New Professionals: Resumes, Resumes, Resumes
November 2 | 1 p.m. EST

Bill Shields, Jr., Executive Director and CEO, ASPA and Adjunct Faculty, American University

A well-developed resume makes the critical first impression when trying to land a job. It introduces you to a potential employer, highlights your qualifications and—hopefully—gets you to the next step of the hiring process. The challenge? You are competing against a pool of candidates with background and experiences exactly like yours…and resumes that look, and read, the same. In this interactive professional development workshop, ASPA Executive Director and CEO Bill Shields will share the rights and wrongs of resumes, both in terms of their format and substance. What are employers looking for? How can you craft effective resumes and describe your accomplishments in compelling ways? Bill will cover these topics and more. Plenty of time will be reserved for Q&A.

From the Archives
KeepingCurrent: The Evidence Act and Performance
The Foundations for Evidence-based Policy Making Act of 2018 was an unprecedented law with bipartisan support that drew heavily upon the recommendations of the Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking to require federal agencies to build capacity for both generating and using evidence to inform decisionmaking. Speakers Nick Hart and Kathryn Newcomer joined us for this webinar earlier this year, sponsored by the Center for Accountability and Performance, to discuss current challenges to evidence-building efforts in federal agencies. (Members Only)

ASPA Student and New Professionals Webinar Series Scheduled for Fall/Winter

ASPA is pleased to announce a series of webinars geared toward our student and new professionals is on the calendar beginning next week. Taking place through February 2024, these 90-minute events—free to attend, whether you're a member or not—are planned to help students and recent graduates with career development, job search fundamentals and more.

The following webinars are scheduled between now and December 14. Find complete details on our website.

  • Resumes, Resumes, Resumes
    November 2, 1 p.m. EDT

  • A CV for Success
    November 14, 1 p.m. EST

  • The Cover Letter Conundrum
    December 5, 1 p.m. EST

  • So, You Want to Work in State or Local Government
    December 14, 1 p.m. EST
Future events still being scheduled for early 2024 include:
  • The Nonprofit Compensation Equation
  • Careers in Federal Government: Searching for a Job, Succeeding in It
  • Hot Jobs in Government
These events are geared toward current students and recent graduates but anyone may attend. As is the case with ASPA's entire webinar program, all events are free for live participation; members automatically receive access to our webinar archive to view the programs after the events have concluded. Details for the Winter 2024 events will be added to our website as they are available. Keep your eyes peeled and register for any of the events that are of interest.

We hope you share these details widely and look forward to seeing our student and new professional members online for one of these webinars soon!


ASPA Slate of Nominees Announced

ASPA's 2023 Nominating Committee has nominated the following members to stand for election to the ASPA National Council:

District 1

  • Hillary J. Knepper
District 2
  • Phillip Carlisle
  • Alan Kennedy
  • Matthew S. Mingus
  • Eloisa Thring
District 3
  • Shaoming Cheng
  • Paige Moore
District 4
  • Aline Alves da Costa
  • Alexander Trembley
District 5
  • Kiersten Farmer
  • Edgar Ramirez de la Cruz
  • Alejandro Rodriguez
Student Representative
  • Collin D. Cox
  • Jamie Bristow Lavoie
  • Kathleen Ann Vincent
Voting will begin the first week of November. If you have questions about ASPA’s elections process, please consult ASPA’s website for more information. Members wishing to petition to have their names added to this year's ballot may contact Jordan Thomas, ASPA's governance and program associate, for details on the process and requirements. The petition period will remain open through next Thursday, November 2.


ASPA's Conference Website Is Live; Early-Bird Registration Rate Available

ASPA is excited to welcome everyone to Minneapolis, Minnesota, next April. Our website has launched and many, many more details will be added to it in the coming weeks.

Our early-bird registration rates are available—just $439 for members, $539 for nonmembers—and will be in effect through midnight eastern time on December 21. Student and new professional members may register for only $259 any time between now and when the conference ends. View all registration details online here.

We look forward to seeing you in Minneapolis!

*ASPA registration rates do not include any extra fees that apply for special events. Individual registrants may pay increased rates to add on programing to their basic registration.

Public Administration Review Call for Practitioners

Beginning January 2, 2024, Public Administration Review (PAR) will feature a new section entitled “Practically Speaking” (PS) that seeks to strengthen ties between scholarly research—a traditional focus of PAR—and its more practical implications for those in public service. Ron Sanders, a long-time practitioner as well as an academic, is serving as associate editor of PS and is looking for reviewers to help him out.

If you are currently a PAR academic reviewer with any experience as a practitioner and are willing to serve as a PS reviewer, please log in to the PAR system and, under the Areas of Interest or Expertise category, annotate your personal profile with the key word "practitioner." That way, PAR editorial team members can search for you and reach out to see if you are willing to help us review a particular PS submission.

If you are not currently a PAR reviewer but (a) have experience as a public administration practitioner and (b) are willing to serve as a reviewer for PS submissions, please use the same website, add your name and profile to the PAR reviewer roster and annotate it with the same key word (“practitioner”).

Note that whether you are a current PAR reviewer or wish to be, the workload will be minimal. You might see one PS manuscript a year for review, with most of the work to be done by the manuscript authors and our editorial team.

Public Integrity Call for Proposals

In 1990, the federal government passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which prevents discrimination against individuals with disabilities in public spaces; it would not be until well into the 2010s before many changes could be seen to take effect. Public administration as a field has been slow to write about and research disabilities through the years since the act's passage, a fact easily observed by reviewing many of the leading journals in public administration and professional conference offerings in recent years. This omission could be viewed as an ethical issue by virtue of not attending to a significant marginalized community. This Public Integrity symposium takes up the topic of disabilities by inviting authors to submit a proposal for consideration looking at issue areas including mental health awareness/physical disabilities and invisible disabilities. This symposium particularly is interested in authors who can speak to the ethics of intersectionality focusing on identities linked with a person’s disability(ies) such as race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, gender expression, social class and more. Interested persons should email their 500-word proposal to Richard Greggory Johnson, III by November 1, 2023. All papers will be vetted via Public Integrity’s peer review process.

October's PMM Is Free to View

Taylor and Francis is proud to announce that the October edition of Public Money and Management is free to view for three months—through the end of the year. This is the third of the PMM/CIGAR collaborations and can be found online here. Including topics such as AI, the commodification of the public good, social media and more, this is a packed edition. Download your copy today.

And, follow their LinkedIn page for future updates like this!

UN DESA and IASIA Regional Workshop Available

The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) and the International Association of Schools and Institutes of Administration (IASIA) are organizing a Regional Workshop for the Review of the Standards of Excellence for Public Administration Education and Training in the Americas. The purpose of the event is to gather inputs from the Americas on the review and/or update of the Standards of Excellence for Public Administration Education and Training and align them to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals. All stakeholders of schools of public administration, professional networks and representatives of international and regional organizations are welcome to attend. For more information on the review process, please see UN DESA/DPIDG’s webpage and the dedicated booklet.

Public Administration Today Highlight

Public Administration Today features white papers, research and blogs from across the profession. If you're interested in more—especially your own curated news feed in your inbox every week—visit the website, create an account and check off your interest areas so you can stay up to date about the latest research being released!

How El Paso’s Streetcars Rose Again
Via Next State: Thanks to a guerilla art campaign and the tenacity of several city officials, El Paso’s iconic streetcars are a core part of the city’s downtown revitalization effort. In 2010, El Paso native and photographer Peter Svarzbein had a vision for bringing El Paso’s streetcars back to life. For his graduate thesis at the New York City School of Visual Arts, Svarzbein created The El Paso Transnational Trolley Project, a conceptual advertising campaign imagining the return of the iconic streetcar running between El Paso and its sister city in Mexico, Juarez, as it used to throughout most of the 20th century.

Tips, Resources and the Fun Stuff

The Science of Forest Bathing: Five Ways It Can Boost Health and Lower Stress
There is a moment of awe that washes over you when you step into a forest. Century-old trees tower above, sunlight twinkling through them. Birds tweet. Spiders weave their elaborate webs. The smell of pine needles fill the air.

Can You Pass the Flexibility Test?
Having a good range of motion is essential for athletics as well as everyday life.

Zinc? Honey? Ginger? What Actually Helps When You Have a Cold or the Flu?
Here’s what we know about some of the most popular remedies that show at least a little promise.

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

The Daunting Dilemma of Disaster Insurance
Will an Attack on Federal Employees Swing the Election? Probably No
By Don Kettl

Engaging with China Despite Rising Tensions
By Andrew Podger

Tell Me Something Good...

Need some good news in your world? Check this out:

Park Opens on Staten Island's Freshkills, Former Site of World's Largest Landfill
Staten Island’s Freshkills was once the site of the world's largest landfill—but it’s now home to what will become one of the biggest parks in the city. City officials cut the ribbon on the first 21-acre section of the North Park section of the new Freshkills park, complete with walking and biking lanes, a lookout deck and access to William T. Davis Wildlife Refuge. The North Park section is designed to cover 233 acres and officials said the remainder of the area is still under construction.


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:
  • JPNA Call for Editor
    The Midwest Public Affairs Conference (MPAC) Board of Trustees has opened nominations for the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Public and Nonprofit Affairs for the years 2024-2026. JPNA is a peer-reviewed, open source journal that is sponsored by the Center for Public Affairs Research at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and published by MPAC. The journal is focused on providing a connection between the practice and research of public affairs. This is accomplished with scholarly research, practical applications of the research and no fees for publishing or journal access. JPNA publishes research from diverse theoretical, methodological and disciplinary backgrounds that addresses topics related to the affairs and management of public and nonprofit organizations. The content of the journal spans the spectrum from public finance and organizational behavior to health administration and veterans’ affairs. Applicants should submit a vita and a letter of application describing relevant experience as a researcher of public administration or a related field, editorial work and managerial aspects of running a journal. Applications should be submitted to interim MPAC president Michael Ford at [email protected] ASAP. Applicants should be prepared to work with the current editor-in-chief Deborah A. Carroll on the final 2023 issue to be published December 1, 2023.

  • 32nd NISPAcee Annual Conference Call for Proposals
    The Network of Institutes and Schools of Public Administration in Central and Eastern Europe (NISPAcee) invites interested parties to submit applications with abstract proposals for the 32nd NISPAcee Annual Conference, which includes activities and research on various topics of public administration. The conference will take place May 23-25, 2024, in Tbilisi, Georgia, and is organized in cooperation with the Caucasus University, Tbilisi, Georgia. You can find calls for application with abstract proposal online here. The deadline for application with abstract proposals is November 10, 2023.

  • SPAR Best Book Award 2024
    ASPA's Section on Public Administration Research (SPAR) invites your nominations for the SPAR Best Book Award. The Section welcomes nominations for books on public administration published in 2022 and 2023. The criterion for the award is a book that significantly contributes to research in public administration. All research methods are welcomed, as are books across the wide range of public administration research. Books primarily written as textbooks will not be considered. The Section welcomes international publications written in English. Only books that contribute to public administration research and theory will be considered. This recognition will be awarded at ASPA's 2024 Annual Conference. A nominating committee comprised of SPAR members will review each nomination and choose the award winners. All nominations for books published prior to October 15, 2023 must be received by November 15; all nominations for books published after October 15, 2023 must be received by December 15. Nominations should list the book title, author and publisher, and include at least a one-page summary outlining the unique contributions of the book. The nomination documents should be sent to the review committee chairperson by email. A copy of the book (hard copy or electronic version) must be sent to each member of the review committee by the dates listed above. Contact the review committee for more details.

  • SAPA Call for Paper Proposals
    Aligned with ASPA's 2024 Annual Conference theme, “Building Resilient Communities,” the Section on African Public Administration (SAPA) invites members in the United States, the African continent and globally to submit their paper proposals on the concept and task of resilience building in the African context. As recognized by the ASPA community in the conference theme, the definition of resilience is driven by local stakeholders as they take charge of the identification of local needs and the formulation of local solutions. The concept of resilience has attracted policymakers, public administrators, practitioners and academics since the 1960s with roots in Paulo Freire's work on the effects of colonial oppression and the ensuring loss of land and community traditional practices. Robert Chambers 1980s action research on rural development further expanded the concept of resilient livelihoods in the face of external shocks and crises and ways to build resiliency in the face of chronic vulnerability and unexpected external shocks and crises, both internal and external. Edward Carr further conceptualizes resilience as “not the mere response to specific impacts as much as the ability to respond over time, recover and return to normality after confronting abnormal, alarming, and often unexpected threats.” In attempting “to address the questions of resilience of what and resilience to what.” Raymond Tutu and Janice Busingye point out the need to further investigate the resilience attributes like “stressors driving change,” “anticipatory learning,” and “social capital.” This call for papers invites scholars and practitioners to debate, within the African continent context, effective and innovative strategies to enhance communities’ ability to prepare for, cope with, rebound from and adapt as needed to unexpected events and threats facing their local systems and livelihoods. SAPA's academic affairs committee welcomes the submission of proposals for individual papers and fully formed panels in alignment with the symposium theme. Please submit your proposal to Shin Kue Ryu, SAPA academic affairs committee chair by November 30, 2023. Click here for more information.

  • 2024 SICA Call for Awards
    ASPA's Section on International and Comparative Administration (SICA) is seeking nominations for its awards program. All nominations must be received by December 15.

    The 2024 Fred Riggs Award for Lifetime Achievement in International and Comparative Public Administration: The Fred Riggs Award was established by SICA in 1985 to recognize scholars who made significant and widely recognized contributions to the conceptual, theoretical and/or operational progress in the fields of international, comparative and/or development administration. This award is named in honor of Fred W. Riggs, a pioneer in these fields and a leading founder of SICA. The award is made annually at the SICA Business Meeting held in conjunction with ASPA's Annual Conference. Each letter of nomination should indicate in some depth the person's intellectual achievements and relevant qualifications for the Fred Riggs Award. You should include the nominee's CV, as well as any other supporting documents. There should be at least two letters of recommendation with at least one letter from a SICA member. All nomination materials should be sent directly to Aroon Manoharan.

    The 2024 David Gould Scholarship: The David Gould Scholarship offers talented graduate students in the fields of public administration, public policy or international development some support to facilitate their participation in the ASPA Annual Conference. This scholarship is named in honor of David Gould, an active SICA member and long-time professor of public administration at the University of Pittsburgh. He was among those killed in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, December 21, 1988. Each year one or two students receive a nominal stipend ($500) to attend ASPA's Annual Conference and SICA’s Riggs Symposium. For the 2024 conference, the stipend will help students defray registration costs. In order to nominate a graduate student for a Gould Scholarship, please send a letter of nomination by a faculty member and the student’s CV to Charlene M. L. Roach.

    The 2024 Jeanne-Marie Col Leadership Award: Established by SICA in 2016, the Jeanne-Marie Col Leadership Award recognizes individual members who have made significant contributions to the development of the Section. Send all nominations to Jeanne-Marie Col Leadership Award Chair Aroon Manoharan. Letters of nomination should indicate detailed contributions of nominees to, and leadership roles within, SICA. You should include an explanation about how the nominee’s contributions have helped to transform and enrich SICA and how SICA will continue to benefit in the future from the nominee’s work. Include relevant supporting documents as well. Each nominee will require at least two letters of nomination from SICA members. The Jeanne-Marie Col Leadership Award committee will give due consideration to all nominations and related materials after the submission deadline. The committee will announce the winner in January 2024 and present the award at the SICA Business Meeting at ASPA's 2024 Annual Conference.

  • Public Budgeting & Finance Call for Papers
    Since 1981 scholars and practitioners of applied government finance have turned to Public Budgeting & Finance to find understandable, reliable, thoughtful and critical analyses of the issues and practices important to the field. In this spirit, Public Budgeting & Finance invites contributions to a special issue focused on property tax administration and policy. Editors are seeking two types of contributions in the special issue: (1) full manuscripts containing original research; (2) proposals providing commentary on policy and/or practice. Completed manuscripts containing original research will be peer-reviewed on an expedited basis. Full manuscripts should be sent no later than December 31, 2023. Editors are especially interested in high-quality empirical manuscripts that explore and provide evidence relevant to policy and/or practice. The papers can intersect with property tax administration in any way. Editors are interested in all aspects of property tax administration, as well as topics that focus on the intersection of the property tax and public policy issues of enduring societal importance. Major considerations will be high-credibility research and topics of broad importance with the potential to influence subsequent policy and research. Manuscripts should be submitted via the PB&F submission website as a new submission toward a special issue. Editors also invite commentary proposals that will undergo editorial review (not peer review). These submissions can be commentaries on current policies or the state of research. Editors also would welcome teams proposing “point and counterpoint” essays that respond to one another. Proposals should include a working title and an abstract or thesis statement not to exceed 250 words. Editors will invite authors of selected proposals to submit full essays not to exceed 5,000 words. Send proposals to [email protected] no later than December 31, 2023. For questions, please reach out to co-editors Craig Johnson and Justin Ross. Click here for more information.

  • Public Money and Management Call for Manuscripts
    Public Money and Management will publish a theme issue in 2024 that comparatively explores the recruitment, training and retention of senior public officials. There have been many changes in approach to the recruitment, training and retention of senior public officials in different regions across the globe, including a general trend away from purely merit-based recruitment toward the focus on and acquisition of definable skills. This has occurred alongside a more nuanced recognition of the need to reflect greater diversity in the background of public officials in many countries. In the drive to gain more efficient and effective delivery of public services, and to overcome the wicked problems often grappled within the public sector, the move to skills-based recruitment and training alongside attention to equality and diversity concerns frequently coincide in modernization drives. This theme seeks to solicit articles from an international range of sources to address the question: How should we recruit and retain a public service fit for purpose and what will it look like? All research articles are due November 20; debate and ND articles are due January 31, 2024. Click here for more information.

  • 2024 COMPA Conference Call for Proposals
    The COMPA 2024 conference will take place February 25-28 in New Orleans. The theme is "Reshaping Public Administration: A Search for Self-Determined, Participatory and Sustainable Governments." The conference serves as a call to all public servants—scholars, public and nonprofit practitioners, and community advocates and stakeholders—who seek to rethink the future of local communities by revisiting past and present experiences as the foundation for engaging debate on reshaping self-determined, participatory and sustainable local community initiatives. COMPA 2024 challenges public administrators, researchers, scholars, policy wonks, think tanks, nonprofits, faculty, students and both scholars and practitioners across multiple fields and professions to rethink the future of local communities by revisiting past and present experiences as the foundation for engaging debate and reshaping self-determined, participatory and sustainable local community initiatives. We will examine the future of local government and tackle those issues that most directly impact each of us. We welcome research and praxis from different backgrounds and methodological orientations, current updates to traditional models and frameworks, and other emergent perspectives on all issues of public service related to the theme. All proposals are due December 15. 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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Please send inquiries to Managing Editor Karen E. T. Garrett.