Redefining “Local” Government

 John M. Eger – Huffington Post

Lionel Van Deerlin Professor of Communications and Public Policy, San Diego State University

Posted:  04/ 7/11 03:41

The new global knowledge based economy, not to mention our current fiscal crisis, demands that government rethink how to organize itself to be most competitive. That might mean cutting out a city council or two, a few mayors of other top administrative posts in the name of efficiency.

The idea of stimulating economic prosperity by reorganizing government, as Neil Pierce syndicated columnist has been writing for years, is that regions, or “citistates” as he calls them, should be looking to develop synergies with nearby cities or counties. “Cities and towns that have a shared identification,” he argues, “function as a single zone for trade commerce and communication and are characterized by social, economic and environmental inter-dependence.”

Most people already live in one jurisdiction, work in other, and play or dine in a third. They have no idea that this is so and that the cost to them is enormous because of the duplication and waste. Moreover, they do not realize that the new creative economy demands consolidation to save money of course. But more is at stake than simply, dollars, or even turf or power.

According to Bruce Katz, a founding director of the Metropolitan Economy Initiative at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C., “There is a fundamental disconnect between how we live and work in large portions all over America and how we govern.”

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Join us for the first-ever Right-Brainers in Business Video Summit hosted by Jennifer Lee, author of The Right-Brain Business Plan: A Creative, Visual Map for Success. The summit features 10 leading creative entrepreneurs who will share their insider secrets on running a successful business on...

Left Brain, Right Brain: Creating a New Business Model

Author by Ted Mininni Published on July 11, 2006

An interviewer once asked Albert Einstein how he developed his complex scientific theories. In reply, Einstein reportedly pointed to his head and said that he used a pencil and a piece of paper to develop his ideas. This clearly demonstrates the perfect union of analytics and creativity in problem-solving. Out of Einstein’s working process came many famous scientific theories, including the theory of relativity. Nothing could better illustrate the integration of left brain and right brain: logic and reasoning coupled with imagination and creativity.

Einstein’s interesting quote (above) points to a current, fundamental shift in business thinking. In fact, business leaders are embracing, with great impact, the concept of integrating analytical abilities and creativity. And this is where our left brain-right brain discussion takes us.

Stephen J. Adler, Editor-in-Chief of Business Week, has dubbed today’s business environment “the Creativity Economy.” In a memorable editorial, “Ready. Set. Innovate,” from August 2005, he states:

The creativity economy may sound like another over-hyped catch-phrase, but companies that have embraced the concept are gaining a bottom-line edge over those who haven’t…innovation and design point the way out of a lot of the difficulties U.S. companies face as high-paying jobs in tech and manufacturing shift overseas. But the smartest U.S. companies are learning that they can still lead the way if they listen closely to their customers and rethink product design. That’s how Starbucks can charge so much for a cappuccino and why the Swiffer is eclipsing the mop.

While innovation and creative design in products and services seem to point the way to future business success, we should expand on Adler’s idea. We could argue that innovation and creativity should be employed to revamp companies’ entire organizational structures—not merely their R&D, sales, and marketing departments—as they endeavor to bring successful new products and services to market. 

The Right Brain Initiative (Manifesto)

The Right Brain Initiative, serving the Portland, Oregon metropolitan region, seeks to achieve a measurable impact on learning by integrating the community's arts and cultural resources into the education of every K-8 student in the region's school districts. This collaboration among artists, educators, parents, business...

There Is a Serious Flaw in College Admissions – John M. Eger

John M. Eger – Huffington Post

Lionel Van Deerlin Professor of Communications and Public Policy,
San Diego State University

Posted: 03/28/11 10:42 AM ET


Is who gets admitted to one of America’s coveted universities each year mostly a numbers process that is badly flawed? You are more likely to have success at LOTTO.

Depending on the college, admissions people like to think that they have set the bar at the right level to screen out only those applicants that meet the colleges’ requirements. Some look closely at the personal letter, if required, to find the young man or woman who offers the creativity the college demands, or the empathy or the passion. But this only comes after the combined scores are tailed and the cut offs are applied.

The truth is that most schools, particularly given the sheer number of applications, rely on GPA and SAT scores. According to the New York Times, Harvard received a record 27,278 applicants “for its next freshman class, a 19 percent increase over last year. Other campuses reporting double-digit increases included the University of Chicago (18 percent), Amherst College (17 percent), Northwestern (14 percent) and Dartmouth (10 percent).”

The problem is that GPAs vary school to school. The SAT, formerly known as the Scholastic Aptitude Test, is a standardized test for college admissions in the United States. It doesn’t vary as much, but is increasingly being discounted by colleges because, many critics have accused, has a cultural bias toward the white and wealthy kids.

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