Public Management and Leadership

Course Number
GAFL 732 001
Course Code
Course Key
Course Description
This is a required course for the MPA students in the Fels Institute of Government. The purpose of this course is to provide aspiring public managers with the tools necessary to work with and within organizations. Students will be introduced to public management concepts and gain the competencies required to address the unique challenges in the public sector. Public managers must have technical expertise in planning, staffing, and budgeting; however, technical skills alone are not sufficient to become an effective public manager. Effective public managers must learn to lead inclusive organizations that leverage diversity and defuse tensions among heterogeneous constituents and stakeholders. You must understand the socio-political context of your organization and your success will be dependent on your ability to analyze policy options and persuade stakeholders and supervisors, through effective communications, to pursue the policy options you recommend. 

Students will explore big questions related to managing and leading public sector organizations, such as: (1) What makes for an effective public manager? (2) Who does a public organization serve? (3) What is the internal and external operating environment of public organizations? (4) How do we know if public organizations are effective? This is accomplished through exploration of theory, concepts, and applications. We will use multiple learning methods including lectures, case studies, and group exercises, to provide students with a robust understanding of public management.