No matter what your political views are, I think we are all frustrated with the ineffectiveness of the U.S. Congress and in many cases state legislatures.
Bruce Katz is the Centennial Scholar at the Brookings Institution. He focuses on the challenges and opportunities of global urbanization. He along with his co-author Jeremy Nowak has just released a new book titled The New Localism.
The New Localism, among other things, is a look at the potential effectiveness of a bottom-up approach to infrastructure, economic dynamism, and the power of creating places you want to be in and come back to. It’s a book that says it’s about “power reimagined.”
This isn’t a blueprint or one size fits all approach. In fact, in many ways, Katz and Nowak make the case that a one size fits all approach to governance is part of the problem. This is more about harnessing the power of local public and private and having them work alongside each other in a sustainable ongoing manner. It’s model with possibilities that tap into unseen local wealth in sustainable ways. This is a digestible understandable way forward toward getting things done from the bottom up.
My sense of the book is that it isn’t about disempowering the federal government so much as it’s about local government stepping up and filling the gap in this age of partisanship and long-standing structural limitations.
In many ways that become clear in our conversation, Katz is looking back toward a reimagined future.
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