The Rise of Sublocal Governance

Nov 11, 2009Nov 12, 2009

 Click to hear Dr. Nelson's podcast or to watch the lecture.

The Social Change Project at the Mercatus Center presented a lecture by Robert Nelson, Professor of Public Policy at the University of Maryland, College Park.
Professor Nelson discussed the growing importance of sublocal forms of governance. The rise of private community associations, in which 20 percent of Americans now live, is a leading example.  The spread of Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) is another important case.  Sublocal governments can specialize and otherwise more effectively address urban problems that have defied the efforts of conventional city governments. Professor Nelson will explore what this means for city and urban governance and the provision of public goods at various levels of government.

Robert Nelson is a Professor at the University of Maryland's School of Public Policy and a Senior Scholar at the Mercatus Center. Prior to joining the University of Maryland, Dr. Nelson worked in a variety of government posts addressing public policy in the areas of the environment, industry, and land use policy. He has been a visiting scholar at several universities and public policy institutions, including the Brookings Institution, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Political Economy Research Center, and the Center for Applied Social Sciences of The University of Zimbabwe. Dr. Nelson is the author of many journal articles and seven books, the latest of which is Private Neighborhoods and the Transformation of Local Government (Urban Institute Press, 2005). He has written widely in publications for broader audiences, including the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Forbes, The Weekly Standard, Reason, Society, and Technology Review.