We’ve recently been reading an advance copy of a book by Bill Leighty, former chief of staff under Governors Tim Kaine and Mark Warner of Virginia. It’s terrific, full of anecdotes from his many years in government service and we look forward to being able to give copies to our friends when it’s published.
This has provoked a conversation between the two of us about some of the best books we’ve read that we think would be fun, instructive or thought-provoking for people in state and local government. Top on our list was The Power Broker by Robert Caro. We’re also very fond of The Lost City, by our friend and colleague Alan Ehrenhalt. And then there’s Machiavelli’s The Prince, which may have been written in the sixteenth century, but certainly resonates with the world in which we live today.
About a dozen years ago, while we were writing columns for Governing magazine, we asked our readers to “submit suggestions for reading materials that are useful for government managers.” We featured a number of them in a column we dubbed “Managers Reading List.” We’ve just taken another look at that list and found that it included many that were about the federal government (like Confessions of a Civil Servant by Bob Stone, which was recommended by the Urban Institute’s Harry Hatry).
So now we’d like to refine our request for readers of the B&G Report, and ask you to please send recommendations for any readers at all (not just government managers) who are interested in state and local government specifically.
You can make submissions, which we’ll feature, with full credit if desired, in a future B&G Report by writing to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, subject lined "B&G Reading List".
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