Beyond the Border
(4 pages of text)
In February 2011, the senior associate deputy minister of Industry Canada was appointed as the Canadian prime minister’s personal representative to the bi-national team charged with developing the “Beyond the Border Action Plan” to both improve security and streamline cross-border commerce and travel between Canada and the United States. He was immediately faced with a range of decisions on how to proceed — whom to consult, which Canadian team members to hire, which of many possible priorities to pursue in discussions with his U.S. counterparts and which steps to take to manage a complex process involving a multiplicity of large and powerful Canadian government departments and agencies as well as private sector interests. While he didn’t yet have strategies to address these issues, he knew that he would have to formulate them rapidly. Both the prime minister and the U.S. president had made clear their desire to move quickly — ideally, an action plan was to be in place within six months.
- To illustrate the fundamental conundrum of accountability without full authority -- a common public sector management scenario.
- To understand the range of organizational challenges faced by a bi-national working group.
- To give students practice in developing strategies to address these types of challenges.
Canada, Large, 2011
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