Doing What Works


How Sunlight Can Improve Federal Contracting Report
With open access to information, genuine competition will increase because the emphasis will be on quality of production and value to taxpayers, which is ultimately key in an era of budget shortfalls. (AP/Aijaz Rahi)

How Sunlight Can Improve Federal Contracting

A single, streamlined database that tracks fraud, waste, and abuse in federal government contracts will help save taxpayers money and reward good companies, writes Pratap Chatterjee.

Pratap Chatterjee

Insourcing Report
Insourcing not only saves money by eliminating the need to pay for the additional layer of corporate bureaucracy that comes with the hiring of a contractor, but it can also improve services to the taxpayer if done wisely. (AP/Bill Waugh)


Pratap Chatterjee explains how insourcing can not only save money but can also improve services to the taxpayer if done wisely.

Pratap Chatterjee

Better Auditing for Better Contracting Report
Defense Contract Audit Agency recruiters Gregory Brooks and Jarolyn Snyder, second from right, talk with job fair participants during a 2009 job fair at Roosevelt University in Chicago.
<br /> (AP/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Better Auditing for Better Contracting

Pratap Chatterjee outlines the different reasons audits by the Defense Contract Audit Agency sometimes fail, what’s been done to correct these failures in the past, and what should be done in the future.

Pratap Chatterjee

Slow Progress Toward a Representative Federal Workforce Article
Lilly Ledbetter is applauded by Vice President Joe Biden and Senior White House Advisor Valerie Jarrett at an event on solutions for families balancing the dual demands of work and caring for family in July 2010. Women have made positive strides in the federal workforce, but much still needs to be done to diversify government employment opportunities.
<br /> (AP/Charles Dharapak)

Slow Progress Toward a Representative Federal Workforce

James Hairston and Vanessa Cárdenas argue that the federal government must do more to increase the number of people of color, particularly Hispanics, throughout its workforce.

James Hairston, Vanessa Cárdenas

Putting Big Oil Subsidies to Work Article
House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), center, accompanied by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), right, and Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), gestures during a news conference to discuss President Barack Obama's decision to halt the Keystone XL pipeline.  (AP/J. Scott Applewhite)

Putting Big Oil Subsidies to Work

Donna Cooper, Richard Caperton, Kate Gordon, and Daniel J. Weiss detail a plan to redirect billions of dollars in giveaways to Big Oil toward building infrastructure to put Americans back on the job.

Donna Cooper, Richard W. Caperton, Kate Gordon, 1 More Daniel J. Weiss

Meeting the Infrastructure Imperative Report
Investing in our freight infrastructure system would not only help  American businesses remain competitive but would also immediately  produce hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the construction and  manufacturing industries, which are among those hardest hit by the  recession. (AP/Rick Bowmer)

Meeting the Infrastructure Imperative

Donna Cooper takes a look at our nation's infrastructure spending needs, and explains how we can pay for them and put Americans back to work.

Donna Cooper

Washington State Shows What Works Article
The Legislative Building at the Washington State Capitol in Olympia. The Washington State Institute for Public Policy, which was created by the state legislature in 1983, provides a proven model for data-driven legislative decision-making. (AP/ Ted S. Warren)

Washington State Shows What Works

Kristina Costa explores the state’s telling investment in an institute that judges the effectiveness of programs for beneficiaries and taxpayers.

Kristina Costa

Finding ‘What Works’ in Education Article
Education Secretary Arne Duncan speaks in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington. There are several

Finding ‘What Works’ in Education

Kristina Costa explores “what works” platforms in education, pointing out their current limitations and also their importance in times of tight budgets.

Kristina Costa

Doing What Doesn’t Work Article
Research shows that Scared Straight programs, which bring at-risk teens to prisons in an effort to deter them from potential criminal behavior, have no positive effect and can actually lead to a greater likelihood of offending actions. (AP/ Ted S. Warren)

Doing What Doesn’t Work

Jitinder Kohli outlines the importance of government agencies focusing resources on programs that work, not ones like this criminal-justice program run amok.

Jitinder Kohli

The State of Our Tax Code Is Weak Article
Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan's analysis that tax expenditures are spending—with the implication that they should be subject to the same level of scrutiny as other federal spending—is correct. (AP/Lawrence Jackson)

The State of Our Tax Code Is Weak

Seth Hanlon argues for trimming wasteful tax expenditures as Congress heads into the 2012 legislative session.

Seth Hanlon

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