Collaborative Public Management

New Strategies for Local Governments

Robert Agranoff and Michael McGuire

"Local and regional administrators will find in Collaborative Public Management a guide to the future of public management."
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Local governments do not stand alone—they find themselves in new relationships not only with state and federal government, but often with a widening spectrum of other public and private organizations as well. The result of this re-forming of local governments calls for new collaborations and managerial responses that occur in addition to governmental and bureaucratic processes-as-usual, bringing locally generated strategies or what the authors call "jurisdiction-based management" into play.

Based on an extensive study of 237 cities within five states, Collaborative Public Management provides an in-depth look at how city officials work with other governments and organizations to develop their city economies and what makes these collaborations work. Exploring the more complex nature of collaboration across jurisdictions, governments, and sectors, Agranoff and McGuire illustrate how public managers address complex problems through strategic partnerships, networks, contractual relationships, alliances, committees, coalitions, consortia, and councils as they function together to meet public demands through other government agencies, nonprofit associations, for-profit entities, and many other types of nongovernmental organizations.

Beyond the "how" and "why," Collaborative Public Management identifies the importance of different managerial approaches by breaking them down into parts and sequences, and describing the many kinds of collaborative activities and processes that allow local governments to function in new ways to address the most nettlesome public challenges.

Table of Contents


1. Collaboration at the Core

2. Managing in an Age of Collaboration

3. Models of Collaborative Management

4. Collaborative Activity and Strategy

5. Linkages in Collaborative Management

6. Policy Design and Collaborative Management

7. Jurisdiction-Based Management

8. The Future of Public Management and the Challenge of Collaboration


A. Survey Design and Administration

B. Economic Characteristics of the Sample Cities




"Local and regional administrators will find in Collaborative Public Management a guide to the future of public management."—Publius

"Managing collaboration across organizational and governmental boundaries presents both tough challenges and also golden opportunities to expand the capacity for effective public action. This book offers plenty of evidence from the front lines and sketches valuable implications for practice as well as research."—Laurence J. O'Toole Jr., professor, School of Public and International Affairs, The University of Georgia

"If collaborative public management is the new direction of public administration, then Agranoff and McGuire's path breaking book points the way. A first-rate study that combines a thoughtfully developed set of models with creative analysis of the way local officials behave. Not only do the authors clearly explain their analytic framework, but they carefully demonstrate how they conducted their research. This important new book will be valuable for scholars and students of city management, intergovernmental relations, and public administration."—Dale Krane, School of Public Administration, University of Nebraska, Omaha

"While collaboration has become a commonplace term in the public management and policy fields, rarely has the term been examined with the skill and facility that Agranoff and McGuire bring to this book. They have captured the richness and complexity of collaborative management and have used the lens of a specific local government policy area to develop models that include an examination of the players, activities, and policy instruments involved in these activities. This volume clearly stirs the intellectual pot!"—Beryl A. Radin, professor of government and public administration, University of Baltimore


Supplemental Materials


Winner of the 2014 Martha Derthick Best Book Award of the American Political Science Association. Co-winner of the 2003 Louis Brownlow Book Award of the National Academy of Public Administration

About the Author

Robert Agranoff is professor emeritus in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University-Bloomington, and since 1990, he has been affiliated with the Instituto Universitario Ortega y Gasset in Madrid. His writings include Dimensions of Human Services Integration, Intergovernmental Management: Human Services Problem Solving in Six Metropolitan Areas, and New Governance for Rural America: Creating Intergovernmental Partnerships.

Michael McGuire is an associate professor, Department of Public Administration, at the University of North Texas and has studied interorganizational and intergovernmental collaboration, rural policy, and economic development strategy. His current work focuses on the skills and behaviors of managers who operate in collaborative settings.

232 pp., 6 x 9

Feb 2003

232 pp., 6 x 9

ISBN: 978-1-58901-018-5
Feb 2003

232 pp.

ISBN: 978-1-58901-298-1
Feb 2003

American Governance and Public Policy series
Gerard W. Boychuk, Karen Mossberger, and Mark C. Rom, Series Editors

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