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North Castle Books

Government Is Us 2.0
Edited by: Cheryl Simrell King

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Cloth ISBN: 978-0-7656-2501-4 Paper ISBN: 978-0-7656-2502-1
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Information: 256pp. Tables, figures, boxes, bibliographical references, index.
Publication Date: April 2011.  


Description: When this seminal work was originally published, the focus was on whether or not citizens should be involved in administrative governance. Today that question has been replaced by concerns about how and how much they should be involved. Currently relationships between citizens and their governments remain as, or more, complicated as they were then.

Government Is Us 2.0 picks up where the previous edition left off. It addresses the bigger questions that are being asked and discussed about the relationships among and between citizens and their governments, how individuals and agencies govern, and the institutional elements that keep us from engendering long-term, socially just participatory change.

The central argument of Government Is Us 2.0 is that much can be done to bridge the gulf between citizens and their governments. The chapter authors offer practical suggestions on how public administrators can productively involve citizens in government work, with steps that will increase citizens' trust in government through opportunities for direct connection and collaboration.

Selected Contents:


Part I. Introduction

1. The Context: Citizens, Administrators, and Their Discontents, Cheryl Simrell King and Renee Nank

2. Citizens and Administrators: The Possibilities and Dilemmas, Cheryl Simrell King

Part II. Democracy and Engagement Through Different Lenses

3. Democracy as a Way of Life: Rethinking the Places and Practices of Public Administration, Kelly Campbell Rawlings and Thomas Catlaw

4. The Citizenship Role of the Public Professional: Imagining Private Lives and Alternative Futures, Richard C.Box

5. Cultivating and Sustaining Empathy as a Normative Value in Public Administration, Lisa A. Zanetti

6. Models of Citizen Participation: Measuring Engagement and Collaboration, Mary M. Timney

7. Democratic Governance through Public-Nonprofit Partnerships: Reclaiming "A Usable Past" from the Settlement House Movement, Jennifer K. Alexander

8. The EPA Seeks Its Role in Communities: Evolutionary Engagement Walter W. Kovalick Jr., Alan Walts, and Suzanne Wells

8. The EPA Seeks Its Role in Communities: Evolutionary Engagement, Walter W. Kovalick Jr., Alan Walts, and Suzanne Wells

9. Obituary: Team Metro, Claire Mostel

10. Eliminating Institutional Racism within Local Government: The City of Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative, Elliott Bronstein, Glenn Harris, Ron Harris-White, and Julie Nelson

11. A Case of Transformational Change: Making Sustainability Real in the City of Olympia, Michael Mucha

12. Think Global, Act Local? A Short Story, Larry S. Luton

13. Imagining the Possibilities Cheryl Simrell King and Ryan K. Warner

13. Imagining the Possibilities, Cheryl Simrell King and Ryan K. Warner

About the Editors and Contributors

Comment(s): " Government is Us 2.0, edited by Cheryl Simrell King, is a welcome extension of the first edition and includes thoughtful examination of government-citizen relations from both original and new contributors. This volume brings us closer to understanding the nuances of enhancing government-citizen relations in public administration and informs scholars, administrators and citizens of both the challenges and possibilities of citizen-based transformations in public administration." -- Jack W. Meek, University of La Verne

" Government is Us 2.0 is the most inspiring textbook that I have ever read. For the most part this book was very engaging and reader-friendly. I enjoyed the multi-author format as it provides the reader with a dynamic point of view. The text placed the reader in the roles of the citizens, and administrators, and the stories compelled me to reflect on my own personal and professional experiences regarding civic engagement." -- Stephanie R. Smith, student reader, University of Missouri

Review(s): " Government Is Us 2.0 picks up where the original left off, considering how citizens should be involved in administrative governance and analyzing relationships between citizens and their governments. From ideas on how public administrators can involve citizens in government work to influences that keep us from participatory change, this provides a powerful political survey perfect for any college-level social or political issues collection." -- The Midwest Book Review

"Overall, the book addresses an important, often-overlooked theme in public policy formation: the inclusion of citizenry in decision-making. Although solving the problem is more complex than the suggestions laid out in the text, the book can serve as a good starting point for debate." -- Government Information Quarterly

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