Insight By Business Of Government Hour

Conversations with Authors Series with Trevor Brown & David Van Slyke

This content is provided by the IBM Center for the Business  of Government.

Mondays at 11:00 a.m. & Fridays at 1:00 p.m.

The Business of Government Radio Hour, hosted by Michael J. Keegan, features a conversation with a federal executive who is changing the way government does business. The executives discuss their careers and the management challenges facing their organizations. Guests include administrators, chief financial officers, chief information officers, chief operating officers, commissioners, controllers, directors, and undersecretaries.


What are the challenges of acquiring complex products? What lessons can be learned from the Coast Guard’s Deepwater program? How can government executives most effectively manage complex acquisitions? Join host Michael Keegan as he explores these questions through the works of Trevor Brown and David Van Slyke, authors of several IBM Center reports on federal acquisition.


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Trevor L. Brown is an Associate Professor and the Interim Director at the John Glenn School of Public Affairs at the Ohio State University. He teaches courses on public management, public sector strategy, and organizational theory.

Over the past 20 years, Dr. Brown has served in a management role for a contractor of the U.S. federal government, in a cooperative
agreement between Indiana University and the U.S. Agency for International Development. In addition, he has testified before the House Committee on Small Business about the contracting practices of the Small Business Administration.

Dr. Brown’s research examines why governments elect to make some products internally, while contracting for others. His research has examined how governments design contracts to govern the exchange, and the investments governments make in contract management capacity to deliver the desired outcomes. This research has been published in such journals as the Public Administration Review, the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, and the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management. In collaboration with Matthew Potoski and David Van Slyke, Dr. Brown is the author of the Cambridge University Press book Complex Contracting: Government Purchasing in the Wake of the US Coast Guard’s Deepwater Program.

Dr. Brown received a bachelor’s degree in public policy from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in public policy and political science from Indiana University.

David M. Van Slyke is a tenured full professor in the department of public administration and international affairs and the Louis A. Bantle Chair in Business-Government Policy at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University. He also serves as a non-resident faculty member at the Maastricht Graduate School of Governance, University of Maastricht, Netherlands. Dr. Van Slyke is an elected Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, a recipient of the Birkhead-Burkhead Professorship for Teaching Excellence Award, the Beryl Radin Award for Best Article published in the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, and several other international research awards.

His research and teaching focuses on government contracting, public-private partnerships, and strategic management in public and nonprofit organizations. Specifically he is interested in government’s use of policy instruments, such as contracts, partnerships and grants, in both intergovernmental and interorganizational relationships and how they shape each institutional actors strategic behavior and decision making.  He has published on these topics in a range of domestic and international journal and practitioner outlets and serves on several editorial boards. His most recent book, Complex Contracting: Government Purchasing in the Wake of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Deepwater Program is published by Cambridge University Press.

Dr. Van Slyke is actively engaged in executive education and has conducted trainings around the world including in China, India, Singapore, and Thailand. He has worked in Russia with the World Bank on issues of corruption in government contracting and partnerships. He served from 2008-2010 as the Research Director for the Smith Bucklin Institute for Association Research. Prior to becoming an academic, David worked in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors.  He holds a Ph.D. in public administration and policy from the University at Albany’s Rockefeller College and a B.S. in Economics.


The Business Of Government Hour

MONDAYS at 11:00 A.M. and FRIDAYS at 1:00 P.M.

Michael J. Keegan, Leadership Fellow, IBM Center for The Business of Government

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