About This Project

Operational Excellence in Government is led by Stephen Goldsmith, Director of the Innovations in American Government Awards program and Professor at Harvard Kennedy School. The project identifies operational efficiency themes across state and local governments. 

The project analyzes recommendations across 30 state and local government studies, highlighting trends and challenges across jurisdictions. By pinpointing opportunities for cost savings, recommending proven efficiencies, and providing implementation guidance, Operational Excellence in Government positions itself as a central resource for public-sector excellence.

The project’s research increases the capacity of state and local governments to induce organizational change. The project will help transform how state and local governments collaborate and implement best practices to achieve efficiency improvements. Overall, the project encourages government process optimization across all public-sector entities. 

The project seeks to promote government transformation through an open-access website outlining efficiency and cost savings examples. As a free resource, the Operational Excellence project eliminates common financial and functional barriers to attaining, analyzing, and implementing proven practices. The project positively impacts the ability of individual governments to share ideas and build momentum across jurisdictions to achieve operational goals.

By providing a free resource to inform and support government transformation, Operational Excellence in Government promotes the attainability of effective governance across all jurisdictions, ultimately leading to a more effective, efficient, and accountable government for all.

As the project develops we will populate the website with additional resources, case studies, and tools highlighting efficiency initiatives and successful government implementation projects.  

This website is housed on the Government Innovators Network, a marketplace of ideas and examples of government innovation for policymakers, policy advisors, and practitioners. Operational Excellence in Government and the Government Innovators Network are both initiatives of Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, the preeminent voice for innovation in government. From 2016-2017, this research project was supported by the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and conducted in partnership with United States Common Sense, a nonpartisan nonprofit policy group dedicated to opening government data and resources to the public, and the Institute for Excellence in Government


For questions about this project or if you are interested in learning more, please contact us.

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