Thursday, December 13, 2018

Grand Challenges Opportunity

The National Academy of Public Administration, an independent, non-profit, and non-partisan organization assisting government leaders in building more effective, efficient, accountable, and transparent organizations, is launching a new campaign to identify the Grand Challenges in Public Administration. This initiative is designed to identify both what is challenging our government and how our government can address those challenges.

APPAM President-elect Angela Evans
© Univ of Texas at Austin

Introducing the 2013 Fall Research Conference: Knowledge Sharing and Policy Perspectives

Greetings APPAM members and welcome to the transforming APPAM website!

As you will see throughout this year, the Program Committee is committed to offering you a challenging and dynamic 2013 Fall Research Conference. The theme for the conference is Power of the Past—Force for the Future. In support of this theme:

  • We want to provide a safe place to question our past research approaches, methods, and focus to strengthen our role in the development and implementation of policy.
  • We want the conference to provide opportunities for our members to explore new ways of thinking about our work and how it relates to the policy challenges of today.
  • We want to share insights, experiences, and fresh ideas on how we can strengthen and grow our contributions to policy making.

We also believe the conference is critical to achieving several of APAM’s strategic goals, namely

  • to promote greater integration across disciplines, methods, topics, and perspectives, and
  • to increase the policy relevance of our work.

We want to offer an environment to explore relationships and foster collaborations. Over the next few months, I'll be introducing several innovations we will be unveiling on the website through a series of blogs. I'd like to share a few with you now.

For the fall 2013 conference, we consolidated the 20 traditional APPAM policy areas into 10 broad policy areas. This new structure will better facilitate knowledge-sharing and the exchange of different perspectives among researchers and policy makers.

The broad new policy areas, with reference to antecedent categories, are as follows:

New Policy Area Original Categories
Category transition for APPAM's 2013 Fall Research Conference
Environmental Policy and Natural Resource Security Environment & Energy

Fragile, At-Risk Families and Youth

Social and Family Policy, Child Policy, Crime and Drugs, Welfare, Asset Building
Global Policy Challenges International
The Impact of Politics on the Policy Process Political Processes
Methods and Empirical Design DataWatch, Methods, Policy Informatics

Poverty and Social Policy

Health (public and community), Social Policy (welfare), Housing (non Section 8) Asset Building
Public and Non-Profit Management and Finance Public and Non-Profit Management, Public Finance
Science & Technology will be treated as a cross-cutting panel theme

Science and Technology

Social Equity Social Equity
Social Insurance and Income Maintenance Aging and Retirement, Disability, Health (Medicare/Medicaid), Housing
Social Investment Employment and Training, Education, Immigration


This new approach should further facilitate new thinking and deepen cross-fertilization around broad issue categories and enhance interdisciplinary dialogue at the conference.

Another innovation building upon last year’s conference is to offer panels that attempt to address increasingly complex cross-disciplinary issues. We look forward to receiving complete panel proposals on issues shown below, but any policy areas where a panel can present an aggregate view are welcome.

Cross-Cutting Policy Area Key Policy Challenges
The Fall of the Middle Class Implications for social and economic policy
Immigration Challenges of selecting and integrating new entrants into the population’s mainstream
Lost Youth Who are they, how have they changed, why have we failed them?
Science and Technology Their role in informing, developing and analyzing policy options
Veterans Challenges of integrating returning veterans: health, housing, income transfer, mental health, job placement, etc.


As you can see, we have an exciting start!!!!

Visit  the 2013 Fall Research Conference information page to read more about the conference theme and our goals.

Watch this space for a series of blog postings that will open up more of the “behind the scenes” workings of APPAM in the lead up to the fall conference.

Angela Evans

2013 APPAM President-elect


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