Mission Mystique

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-10-19
  • Publisher: Cq Pr
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In an era filled with mistrust for big government and big business, Charles Goodsell goes against this grain to draw attention to public agencies admired for what they do and how well they do it. In his groundbreaking new book, Goodsell places renewed focus on organizational mission and its potential to be a strong energizing force in government-one that animates a workforce internally and attracts admiration and talent externally.#xA0; He offers a normative template for the mystique that underlies this phenomenon and highlights-in six rich case studies-a driving sense of purpose, a cultural and motivational richness, and a capacity for tolerating dissent while still innovating and learning. Analyzing what works best (and what doesn#x19;t), Goodsell provides a metric through which agency mystique can be evaluated and modeled. Goodsell#x19;s fresh take on public agencies not only defines good public administration in terms of ethical conduct, constitutional accountability, and performance effectiveness, but argues that the field must add the crucial standard of institutional vitality.

Author Biography

Charles T. Goodsell is professor emeritus at the Center for Public Administration and Policy at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. His other books include The American Statehouse: Interpreting Democracy's Temples; Public Administration Illuminated and Inspired by the Arts, coedited with Nancy Murray; The Social Meaning of Civic Space: Studying Political Authority through Architecture; and The Case for Bureaucracy: A Public Administration Polemic, 4th Edition.

Table of Contents

Figures, Tables, and Boxesp. ix
Prefacep. xi
Mission Mystique and a Belief System Templatep. 1
The Idea and Study of Mission Mystiquep. 2
Literature Pertinent to Mission Mystiquep. 5
A Mission Mystique Templatep. 14
U.S. National Park Service: Caretaker of America's Best Ideap. 26
Yosemite, Cradle of the National Park Ideap. 26
The National Park Service: A Capsule Historyp. 30
Today's National Park Servicep. 35
The Park Service Missionp. 38
People of the Park Servicep. 42
Park Service Core Valuesp. 48
The Mission under Stressp. 56
This Instance of Mission Mystiquep. 60
U.S. National Weather Service: Daily Companion and Watchful Guardianp. 64
Katrina, The Perfect Stormp. 64
A Long and Varied Historyp. 68
Today's National Weather Servicep. 73
NOAA as Institutional Supervisorp. 75
Saving Lives and Livelihoodsp. 79
World-Class Weather Forecastingp. 81
Themes in the NWS Belief Systemp. 85
The Perils of a Big Projectp. 91
This Instance of Mission Mystiquep. 93
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Stewards of the Public Healthp. 97
A Bioterrorism Attackp. 97
Wartime Malaria Controlp. 102
Establishing the CDCp. 103
A Mission in Fluxp. 108
The Sencer Erap. 109
The Foege Erap. 114
The Gerberding Erap. 118
The Organisation Todayp. 123
Institutional Commitmentp. 131
This Instance of Mission Mystiquep. 135
Department of Social Services, Mecklenburg Country, N.C.: The Delicate Business of Welfarep. 138
From Welfare to White Housep. 139
The Early Yearsp. 141
Jake Comes to Townp. 143
Giving People a Chancep. 146
Giving People a Lifep. 149
A Department of Social Servicesp. 154
A Delicate Culturep. 159
Building Capacity for Actionp. 164
The Department Todayp. 170
This Instance of Mission Mystiquep. 172
Virginia State Police: The Commonwealth's Finestp. 175
Carnage at Virginia Techp. 175
Predecessor Organizationsp. 181
The Woodson Era and Beyondp. 183
A Paramilitary Organizationp. 187
A Paramilitary Culturep. 193
The Less Public Sidep. 202
Professional Autonomyp. 207
This Instance of Mission Mystiquep. 209
U.S. Peace Corps: An Ethical Enterprisep. 212
JFK Hits a Winning Numberp. 212
The Mythology Unraveledp. 214
Sarge Takes Chargep. 216
Fights for Independence and Survivalp. 221
The Organization Nears 50p. 225
The Volunteers and Their Workp. 233
Evaluation of a Cosmic Missionp. 240
Autonomy behind the Scenesp. 246
This Instance of Mission Mystiquep. 247
The Significance of Mission Mystiquep. 250
Belief Systems Analyzedp. 250
Thematic Mechanisms in Mission Mystiquep. 260
The Substainability of Mission Mystiquep. 266
Implications for Public Administrationp. 268
Notesp. 274
Persons Interviewed or Consultedp. 292
Appendixp. 294
Selected Bibliographyp. 295
Indexp. 297
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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