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Journal of Public Affairs Education

Review

Review of The Trusted Leader of public trust in government. They do take the problem and need as a given. It would have been helpful to include more about the many facets of trust in governing. The unique contribution of The Trusted Leader is that it takes the problem of or need for trust in government as equivalent to the relationship of trusting someone. It endeavors to couple building trust with deliberate building of vertical and horizontal relationships. Even so, building trust is arguably about more than career civil servants building relationships that “make government work.” Certainly, staff leaders in other branches of government might include themselves as key actors in this important work. Newell’s chapter on values-based leadership has numerous citations related to creating an ethical culture and fostering ethical conversations as well as managing the ethics of dissent. A recent JPAE article also relates trust in government to ethical decision making and a pedagogy of ethics in an MPA program (Kennedy & Malatesta, 2010). The concept of values-based leadership is complex, and it is not altogether clear whether it is not simply another name for ethics in public service leadership. This is an example of where it might be conceptually clearer to connect values-based leadership to the philosophy of the FEI leadership development curriculum. The Trusted Leader chapter footnotes refer to a “leadership challenge” activity at FEI, which is a statement program executives prepare to describe how they wish to lead their organization into the future (presumably linked to re-administering the constitutional oath of office). Perhaps the relationship between the FEI and the essays throughout should be much more explicit. This is not a book about decision making, though implicit in each relationshipbuilding essay is a choice about whether to invest in cultivating the relationship as suggested and doing so from a stance of values-based, trusted leadership. It is more a book about cooperative management (NAPA, 1992) or collaborative management (Newell, Reeher, & Ronayne, 2008) occurring within the U.S. constitutional framework. The beauty and the challenge of the book is that it concentrates attention on the nexus of complex and ambiguous concepts: public trust in government, values, relationships, and self-conscious leadership. Use in the MPA Curriculum Schultz (2010) suggests that as the practice of public administration changes, so too must the content and technique of what is taught. In the context of this book, we might say that as governing becomes increasingly fraught with uncertainty and complexity, and as preservation of the public trust in government becomes increasingly important and fragile, so too must the practice, study, teaching, and learning of public administration change. In view of my own earlier work with the National Academy of Public Administration panel that authored Beyond Distrust: Building Bridges between Congress and the Executive, and my involvement extending aspects of that work in Journal of Public Affairs Education 155

Review of The Trusted Leader building the early Stennis Congressional Staff Fellows Program (103rd to 110th Congresses), I was frankly delighted to discover The Trusted Leader earlier this year, and I chose it as one of four books and other articles to frame the conceptual core of an MPA capstone seminar I am teaching at the University of Illinois Springfield. I use The Trusted Leader—along with O’Leary’s Ethics of Dissent (2006), Kingdon’s America the Unusual (1999), and articles addressing evidencebased policy and management) to spark a dialogue among MPA students in their final semester of studies. In the context of the MPA capstone seminar, The Trusted Leader essays have indeed engendered both reflective dialogue and intensive debate, especially around the meaning of values-based leadership and the asserted significance of self-awareness. This has happened in both online and on-ground formats, and I will use The Trusted Leader again next semester. The Trusted Leader is also recommended for use in other MPA courses, especially courses or modules addressing public service values and administrative ethics, leadership and organizational dynamics, public management and organizational theory, internship seminars, and introduction to the profession. As another reviewer put it, “The blend of organizational development, self-help, political science, public administration, international affairs, (and front-line anecdotes) provided by the authors is exceptional” (Hall, 2009). Reeher, Newell, Ronayne, and colleagues offer MPA students a richly integrative public service leadership perspective that invites further inquiry at the same time that it helps students to think critically about the meaning they make of their MPA degree. By stating the central question as “how can we strengthen relationships and instill trust inside and outside our organizations so as to foster agency success and positive public perceptions” (p. 8), The Trusted Leader essays raise awareness of the multiple influences on trust in government and the important role individual public administrators can play in fostering institutional trust. At the same time, the essays collectively make clear the complex and conflicting nature of values-based leadership to foster public trust. References Hall, L. (2009). Book review: The trusted leader: Building the relationships that make government work. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 38, 724–727. Halley, A. (2010). Federal career service leadership: Can we do better? [Review of the book The early years of the Federal Executive Institute (iUniverse, 2010), compiled and edited by Frank P. Sherwood]. Washington, DC: PA Times. Hardin, R. (2002). Trust and trustworthiness. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Kennedy, S. S., & Malatesta, D. (2010). Safeguarding the public trust: Can administrative ethics be taught? Journal of Public Affairs Education, 16 (2), 161–180. Kingdon, J. W. (1999). America the unusual. Boston: Wadsworth. 156 Journal of Public Affairs Education

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