Posted Oct. 11/08
by Lucianne Poole
|Katherine Graham, dean of the Faculty of Public Affairs, believes we can learn from the Australian model of local government. |
Katherine Graham knows Canadian local government inside and out. Graham is professor and dean of the Faculty of Public Affairs and is a renowned researcher in public policy and management, with an expertise in urban government and Aboriginal northern policy and development. Due to her mastery of the art, Graham is in demand as a commentator on public policy issues, and has served as an advisor to all three levels of government in Canada, as well as to governments worldwide.
The prolific author is once again sharing her expert knowledge in a new book, Local Governments in a Globalizing World: A Comparative Perspective on Recent Reforms in Canada and Australia. It is being published by the University of Toronto Press, and is co-edited by Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly of the University of Victoria and John Martin of Australia.
It pairs scholars from Canada and Australia to write about aspects of local government in their respective countries. Graham is analyzing intergovernmental relations in Canada. Another Carleton contributor to the book is Susan Phillips, director of the School of Public Policy and Administration, who is writing about citizen engagement and local government in Canada.
The book highlights similarities, differences and trends between local governments in Canada and Australia.
“You understand government and politics by looking around you, not just domestically, but comparatively,” explains Graham, who hopes the book will interest scholars, teachers and those within local government. “Cities are pretty complex to run. And both people who work in city government and people who study city government are interested in literally looking around the world to find out what is going on, what the trends are, what best practices might be and perhaps to do some experimentation based on that.”
Graham, who once visited Australia to present a paper on urban Aboriginal people, says the commonalities between both countries make for a good comparison because they are both federations, heavily urbanized and have gone through cycles of reform.
As a result, Graham believes Canadians can learn from aspects of the Australian model of local government.