Linda Bilmes' "The People Factor: Strengthening America by Investing in Public Service"

The People Factor: Strengthening America by Investing in Public Service

Linda J. Bilmes, Lecturer in Public Policy

W. Scott Gould, Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs


Facing its greatest domestic challenges since the Great Depression, America is waking up to the realization that government is still important. In their new book, The People Factor: Strengthening America by Investing in Public Service, Harvard professor Linda J. Bilmes and IBM Vice President W. Scott Gould argue that the country cannot prosper without a strong, highly functioning federal work force to manage the government. The authors call for an investment of $10 billion to improve recruiting, training and management of the federal workforce predicting that investment will yield $300-$600 billion in productivity gains. Packed with cost and performance data as well as new research on what motivates applicants for government jobs, these former government executives provide a compelling business case for investing in the civil service so that it may better serve the nation. A must read for policy makers, civil servants and citizens who demand more from government.

Notable Quotes

"Ultimately our welfare as a nation depends on the quality of our government, and government in turn cannot be better than the people who staff it. Government staffing rarely makes the front pages but it is profoundly important to our future. This important book shows how we as a country can do much better."-Lawrence H. Summers

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