Jeremiah Program

This case explores the national scaling efforts of Jeremiah Program, a Minneapolis-based nonprofit. Jeremiah Program is a nationally recognized nonprofit organization whose proven, holistic approach transforms families from poverty to prosperity two generations at a time. The program provides single mothers and their children with a safe, affordable place to live, quality early childhood education, life skills and empowerment training, and support for career-track education. The Program to Scale Worksheet (see associated tools) was created by Julia Jackson with assistance from Anika Walz.    See full post

IRS Targeting of Conservative Groups

This case concerns IRS (Internal Revenue Service) targeting of conservative organizations for special scrutiny. The curated materials include a timeline of the case, an auditor’s report on the IRS, opinion pieces published in national media, and two video clips from national news outlets. Together the materials present factual information and opinions about what actions were taken by the IRS, how the scandal emerged and was handled, and the subsequent repercussions for the operations and legitimacy of executive and legislative branches of the U.S. government. This is recommended as a case study in the management of public organizations.    See full post

Rural Traffic Safety

More than half of the 37,261 fatal crashes in the United States occur on rural roads. This e-study draws on the work of the National Center for Excellence in Rural Safety (CERS), established by the 2005 federal transportation act. The program is a joint effort between the University of Minnesota's Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs’ CERS and the Center for Transportation Studies. Materials gathered explore the role of the media, data sources on crash facts, of academic and transportation safety agencies, of federal, state and local communities in reducing rural traffic fatalities. The case uses the work of the Toward Zero Deaths program which has identified four major focus areas (engineering, enforcement, education, an... Continue reading

Rural Broadband

This e-study pulls together materials about an important infrastructure development in rural American at the beginning of the 21st Century. The materials gathered span diverse contexts to map to various learning needs; a few sources provide global framing, some highlight recent federal policy actions including 2010 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and recommendations by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and still others highlight state policy or local impact of policy implementation. Crafted in this way, this case provides introductory material for students so that they can engage in this policy issue that raises important questions about public and private roles, citizen access, and market and government failure.    See full post

Asset Development

This e-study pulls together materials about an important social problem, the significant disparities in assets among various people in the U.S. In the last few years, more public attention has focused on the growing challenge of income inequality in the United States and its consequence on a range of outcomes, including social mobility and citizen engagement.    See full post

Understanding Community Engagement: The Case of the Detroit Works Project

This e-study explores the concepts and core principles of community engagement, drawing from the unique story of the Detroit Works Project (DWP). The Detroit Works Project was an ambitious citywide project launched in September of 2010 by Detroit Mayor Dave Bing. The goal of the project, which completed its planning phase in January 2013, was to develop a new blueprint—called a Strategic Framework Plan—to improve the physical, social, and economic landscape of Detroit, and to engage Detroiters in the process of its development. This case offers lessons about the challenges and successes of the Detroit Works Project’s community engagement processes, as well as strategies, tactics, and tools to address such challenges. All photos and di... Continue reading

Aspire: Building Partnerships through Social Entrepreneurship and Empowerment

Aspire started in the basement of a church in the western suburbs of Chicago in 1960. Concerned parents of children with developmental disabilities were brought together by the challenges of providing adequate support to help their children live independently and thrive as other children did. These parents were discouraged by medical professionals who at the time suggested their children would not lead normal lives, and therefore, parents were counseled to send their children to homes that would keep them isolated from the rest of society. Refusing to believe this was their only option, these parents pooled their resources to start what we know today as Aspire. Fifty years later, Aspire has helped thousands of children and families througho... Continue reading

Office of Economic Opportunity: Capitalizing on a Nonprofit Network

This three part e-case highlights collaborative public management practices used with a nonprofit network seen as partners in public services rather than mere vendors. Part One focuses on how monitoring and performance manage is accomplished. Part Two highlights how the network was activated in creating a new statewide program for asset development. Part Three describes how the network implemented federal stimulus programs.    See full post

Culture Change at Life's WORC

Life’s WORC is an unusual social service agency that has created a culture of empowerment supported by strong performance management practices. Agency leaders realized in the late 90s that the agency culture was an impediment to improving the quality of services and recognized the need to create a different work environment for front line staff. In 2000, they began to build a values-based culture and to create metrics to assess progress. The change process is described in three cases: Case A: Involving Staff in Culture Change (2000 – 2003); Case B: Accelerating Change (2004 – 2007); and Case C: Visible Progress and New Challenges (2008 – 2013).    See full post

Reforming Children's Mental Health

This e-case tells the story of a cross-sector coalition of consumer advocacy organizations, mental health providers, health plans, hospitals and public agency representatives that formed in 2001 to address the disparate implementation and lack of appropriated state funds since the 1989 MN Children’s Mental Health Act. Over the course of a decade (2002 – 2013), this effort combined with other broad collaborative efforts to successfully coalesce support for the expansion of Minnesota’s children’s mental health system.    See full post