Advice for the New Mayor
Savas, E. S.
Heinemann, H. Erich
Wriston, Walter B.
Margaret Mahoney President, Commonwealth Fund
Select what you want to do for the next four years, and narrow the list down to what you think is doable and most needs to be done.
Improving the public schools would be first on my list. Organizational expert Peter Drucker says the future of the United States lies in the knowledge industry-the ability to generate knowledge and the ability to use it. New York City's schools are not now up to the task of properly preparing future generations of knowledge producers and users.
My second priority would be to make government a facilitator, not a roadblock, to improving how things are done. Our industries, businesses, and social agencies should be encouraged to innovate-- what the Japanese call , a concept that is embodied in the daily life and work of Japanese organizations. New York's city and state governments often make it impossible to improve how things work--whether it's getting contracts to build or renovate approved, introducing new services, or changing systemwide processes or procedures.
Third, even marginal but measurable progress in daily city life would be heralded: better traffic controls, definitive efforts to control begging by helping nonprofit agencies that work with street people, protecting our vast parkland, and putting more cops on the beat would all be steps in the right direction.