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Alliance Created To Link Efforts Seeking To 'Reinvent Government'

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Reformers interested in gaining access to information and ideas on how to "reinvent government'' can now turn to a new organization devoted to making government more entrepreneurial and decentralized.

The formation of the Alliance for Redesigning Government--founded by David Osborne, the co-author of the 1992 best-selling book Reinventing Government, and several other public-policy experts--was to be announced early this week

Among other services designed to link groups seeking to make government entities operate more effectively, the alliance plans to launch a "fax'' newsletter, an electronic bulletin board, and a referral service.

Several prominent politicians have agreed to serve on the alliance's advisory board, including Gov. Barbara Roberts of Oregon, Gov. William F. Weld of Massachusetts, and U.S. Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman of Connecticut. Several leaders in the education-reform movement, including Gov. Roy Romer of Colorado and Albert Shanker, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, will also serve on the board.

Mr. Osborne said in an interview last week that the alliance was created in response to the deluge of requests for information and speech invitations that has flooded his office and that of his co-author, Ted Gaebler, since Reinventing Government was published in February 1992. (See Education Week, Feb. 19, 1992.)

"What became very clear,'' he said, "is that there are thousands, probably hundreds of thousands, of people working around America to reinvent their governments ... but there was no place for them to turn for assistance.''

Creating Prototypes

The alliance plans to establish several "design labs'' each year that will link up government officials with reform advocates to create innovative prototypes, said the alliance's director, Barbara Dyer, the former director of policy studies at the Council of Governor's Policy Advisers, an affiliate of the National Governors' Association.

The "reinventing government'' movement has achieved greater prominence in recent months as the Clinton Administration has moved to publicly embrace many of its ideas. Earlier this month, the President announced that Vice President Gore will direct a six-month "reinventing government'' review in an effort to combat waste and fraud.

"The more you work on these issues, the more you understand there is not a resource available to you to keep you from reinventing the wheel,'' Governor Roberts said of the alliance last week. "Not only do I expect to learn from it, but I also expect to be able to share some of the things that Oregon is doing well.''

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