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John Kamensky

Senior Fellow, IBM Center for the Business of Government John M. Kamensky is a Senior Research Fellow for the IBM Center for the Business of Government. He previously served as deputy director of Vice President Gore's National Partnership for Reinventing Government, a special assistant at the Office of Management and Budget, and as an assistant director at the Government Accountability Office. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and received a Masters in Public Affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.
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Government Is Data Rich, But Information Poor

June 12, 2018 Agencies today have access to more data than ever before. In fact, data is a new strategic asset for organizations, like oil. But like oil, it isn’t useful until it is refined. That means turning it into information and insight. “We are data rich and information poor,” says Shelley Metzenbaum,...

The Future of Civic Engagement

May 25, 2018 From its earliest days, American democracy has been rooted in vigorous civic engagement. More recently, there have been fears that increasing distrust in institutions will lead to large scale disengagement in civic life. However, some optimistic observers are hopeful that the millennial generation will create new momentum for civic involvement....

Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Government

May 7, 2018 A goal of many public administrators—to create reliable, repeatable administrative processes—parallels nicely with the promise of artificial intelligence in that AI can improve performance and consistency of public services. But as Tom Davenport and Julia Kirby observe about AI in their recent book, Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers...

Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Government

May 1, 2018 A goal of many public administrators—to create reliable, repeatable administrative processes—parallels nicely with the promise of artificial intelligence in that AI can improve performance and consistency of public services. But as Tom Davenport and Julia Kirby observe about AI in their recent book, Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers...

Agencies Reveal New Priority Goals

February 28, 2018 As required by the GPRA Modernization Act, the Trump administration earlier this month posted its first set of agency strategic plans and priority goals. But the goals, which were described on the performance.gov website, haven’t received the same attention as the White House’s 2019 budget proposal released the same day....

Next Steps in Improving Government Performance

January 29, 2018 Have government reformers been putting the chicken before the egg? For years, their attention has been on improving performance by focusing on program results. But a new study released today by the National Academy of Public Administration says a key step has been missing in that approach. The Academy’s study...

If You Want Engaged Employees, You Need Engaged Leaders

January 18, 2018 In a 2016 review of more than 82,000 work units across 230 organizations covering nearly 2 million employees, the Gallup Organization found that “the relationship between engagement and performance at the business/work unit level is substantial and highly generalizable across organizations.” It’s no wonder that the Office of Personnel Management,...

How Agility Is Driving Government Transformation

November 24, 2017 Government has a notoriously difficult time adapting to rapid advances in technology and the shifting expectations of citizens. But agency leaders can tap an approach from the field of software development—agile method—to improve program management and achieve better mission outcomes. Agility refers to the ability to act quickly and easily....

How Data-Driven Insight Is Transforming Government

November 15, 2017 The IBM Center recently released Seven Drivers Transforming Government, a series of essays exploring key drivers of change in government. It is based on our research and insights shared by current and former government officials. What follows is an excerpt from that report. The language around performance-related data in government...

Proponents of Evidence-Based Policy Face a Critical Challenge

November 1, 2017 The recommendations by the recent Evidence-Based Policymaking Commission are a significant step towards creating a better supply of data for researchers and policymakers. But the next step is huge—getting people to use the data. The “use of data” step is complicated by two elements: Who will use it and for...