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2017 Commissioner’s Award
Off and Running
The Prospects and Pitfalls of Government Transitions in Canada
Author: David Zussman
Publication Date: 2013
One of the most pivotal events in the electoral cycle is the transition of a newly elected political party from opposition to government. The incoming prime minister or premier must assemble a team of ministers, advisors, and staff that is competent and ready to govern, without disrupting the day-to-day functioning of their country or province.
Off and Running sets the stage for successful transitions by describing the best practices from Canadian federal government transitions from 1984 to the present day. It draws on a number of sources: the author's own career in public affairs, including his significant role in the transitions of both Chrétien governments in 1993 and 1997; extensive interviews with more than forty key individuals in the last eleven federal government transitions; and the international literature on government transitions, public administration, and management.
Zussman goes step-by-step through the transition process from the pre-election stage to transition planning all the way to implementation and consolidation of the new government. This book is ideally suited to those seeking an understanding of how government works during one of the most crucial points in its life cycle.
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