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Do As You Say

June 25, 2008 Air Force contracting officials have reaped both pity and condemnation this month for their missteps in setting up a $35 billion tanker program. On June 18, the Government Accountability Office criticized the military service for failing to adhere to its own rules when it awarded the contract in February to...

Better Choices

June 4, 2008 People make bad decisions all the time. They make unhealthy food selections, choices that hurt their wallets and actions that not only aren't in their own interest, but are not in the public's interest either. A new book by University of Chicago professors Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein suggests, however,...

Better Choices

June 1, 2008 Here's a new way of thinking about government programs. People make bad decisions all the time. They make unhealthy food selections, choices that hurt their wallets and actions that not only aren't in their own interest, but are not in the public's interest either. A new book by University of...

Expect Less

May 21, 2008 FROM NEXTGOV arrow This piece was originally written for GovernmentExecutive.com Get a grain of salt for all that Web-based hoopla and handheld whiz-bang and all that talk of solutions for the enterprise. We're now several decades into the information technology era, but the safest bet for a large-scale IT project -- in government...

Expect Less

May 21, 2008 Get a grain of salt for all that Web-based hoopla and handheld whiz-bang and all that talk of solutions for the enterprise. We're now several decades into the information technology era, but the safest bet for a large-scale IT project -- in government or in the private sector -- is...

Intelligent Design

May 7, 2008 The importance of designing workplaces with both efficiency and an agency's mission in mind was driven home at a recent congressional hearing featuring, of all people, the director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Harley Lappin, who rose through the prison system's ranks to become director in 2003, explained how...

Intelligent Design

May 1, 2008 How your workplace is designed can have a big impact on how things get done. The importance of designing workplaces with both efficiency and an agency's mission in mind was driven home at a recent congressional hearing featuring, of all people, the director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Harley...

Blast From the Past

April 16, 2008 The phrase "pay for performance" gets civil servants hot under the collar these days, as government leaders grapple with the perception that all members of the federal workforce receive the same treatment, regardless of their level of effort. The 1883 Pendleton Act launched the current civil service system. That law's...

Employer of Choice

April 2, 2008 Here's a pop quiz on federal hiring: How old would you guess the average entry-level federal hire is? What's the most common way entry-level employees find out about federal jobs? How long do most new employees plan to work for the federal government? One might imagine the typical applicant to...

Employer of Choice

April 1, 2008 New workers have good things to say about federal employment. Here's a pop quiz on federal hiring: How old would you guess the average entry-level federal hire is? What's the most common way entry-level employees find out about federal jobs? How long do most new employees plan to work for...