Managing Local Government: An Essential Guide for Municipal and County Managers offers a practical introduction to the changing structure, forms, and functions of local governments. Taking a metropolitan management perspective, authors Kimberly Nelson and Carl W. Stenberg explain U.S. local government within historical context and provide strategies for effective local government management and problem solving. Real-life scenarios and contemporary issues illustrate the organization and networks of local governments; the roles, responsibilities, and relationships of city and county managers; and the dynamics of the intergovernmental system. Case studies and discussion questions in each chapter encourage critical analysis of the challenges of collaborative governance. Unlike other books on the market, this text’s combined approach of theory and practice encourages students to enter municipal and county management careers and equips them with tools to be successful from day one.

Service Delivery Strategies and Innovation

Service Delivery Strategies and Innovation

The word government is from a Greek word, which means “to steer.” The job of government is to steer, not to row the boat. Delivering services is rowing, and government is not very good at rowing.

—E. S. Savas (Osborne & Gaebler, 1992, p. 25)

Previous chapters have discussed the mismatch between the jurisdictional boundaries of local governments in the United States and the scope of the problems they confront. It is clear that many contemporary problems ignore municipal and county boundary lines and call for intergovernmental and intersectoral collaboration in order to be effectively addressed. The challenge for the local manager is to find ways to develop scale capacity to tackle service needs and challenges while ...

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