Brookings Institution. April 15, 2014.
It isn’t easy to innovate in governance. Bureaucracy can be hidebound. The private sector’s lean startup model, with its “fail forward” ethos, is antithetical to government as we know it. Electorates are not tolerant of failure, and voter confidence in government is at an all time low. In a 2013, more people listed government dysfunction as the problem they believe is the country’s most serious challenge. Given these headwinds, it’s not surprising that many officials resist the experimentation and risk necessary to innovate.
However, partly in response to this same citizen disaffection, a new wave of participatory policy reforms is springing up across the United States. This includes New Urban Mechanics in Boston and Philadelphia piloting experiments to engage citizens with City Hall to Participatory Budgeting, a process to enlist citizens as decision makers on public budgets. While the civic experiments differ in form, they reflect common principles in action that offer lessons for policy makers considering their own civic innovations. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
Center for Strategic & International Studies. April 2014.
This report evaluates the energy and geopolitical shifts that have arisen from the production of shale gas and light tight oil in the United States. It begins by assessing how much the unconventional energy trend has already impacted energy, geopolitics, and national security. It then posits several possible energy futures that could emerge from the unconventionals revolution. Finally, it offers views on the major geostrategic question: how will the United States seek to utilize this, so far, domestic resource trend, and given the range of potential future energy outcomes, what might the geopolitical and national security implications be. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
http://csis.org/files/publication/140409_Ladislaw_NewEnergyNewGeopolitics_WEB.pdf [PDF format, 66pages].