March 31, 2009

Change for America

This collection of over 60 essays written by policymakers and scholars articulate a new, progressive agenda for President Obama. The call for change is administratively centered around the organization and composition of the White House staff and their functions, economic policy, domestic policy and national security policy. However, the proposed ideas and solutions are based on four core values: democracy, security through diplomatic means, economic opportunity, and a greener world. The goal is to make changes to "repair" the aspects of government that the writers assert are "broken," and to create an enduring progressive era. This book is the result of a collaboration between the Center for American Progress Action fund, the advocacy arm of a Washington-based progressive think tank led by John Podesta, and the New Democracy Project.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Change for America: A Progressive Blueprint for the 44th President
edited by Mark Green and Michele Jolin
JK 468 .P64 C43 2009

The Great Warming

This book presents a history of global warming. Fagan explains how climate change from the 10th to the 15th centuries has been viewed in a largely positive light. In Western Europe, a longer growing season in the summers led to bountiful harvests and population growth. With these necessities of life more assured, people had time for leisure, cultural activities, and greater emphasis on education. In Southeast Asia, new wind patterns enabled people to sail further from the continent, settling permanently on remote islands. In the Arctic regions, the appearance of new waterways enabled the Norse to make contact with the Inuit, trading precious metals. Warming trends were not universally positive, however. Along the equator, desert regions such as the Sahara, expanded bringing drout and famine to the inhabitants of the border regions. In the Americas, native civilizations such as the Mayans, collapsed, leaving behind archaeological relics of their culture's zenith. In writing this history, Fagan demonstrates the great power of climate to both boost and destroy societies, and sends a caution that we should not underestimate the warming trend that we are observing today.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

The Great Warming: Climate Change and the Rise and Fall of Civilizations
Brian Fagan
QC 981.8 .G56 F34 2009

Disaster Response and Homeland Security

Hurricane Katrina was the most recent in a series of natural disasters that were not well managed. Miskel, a former official at FEMA, observes that when an emergency situation is managed poorly, people tend to blame the individuals or organizations involved. Instead, he asserts that what is needed instead is a broad analysis of disaster response, one that examines the system, network of involved organizations and processes that are used. Miskel offers this kind of analysis by examining large-scale disasters occurring from the 1970's to the present. He points out operational failures that occurred during each and showed the effects that these had on the system, processes, and principles that are in place today. To respond successfully to a disaster, Miskel asserts that three factors must occur: timely and effective coordination between state and federal governments, similar coordination between federal agencies, and coordination between state and local agencies. He suggests that reforms be implemented to bring about that coordination and cooperation, impacting the system, rather than simply initiating change within one of the system participants.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Disaster Response and Homeland Security: What Works, What Doesn't
James F. Miskel
UA 927 .M55 2006

March 25, 2009


One of the most frequently studied British political figures, Winston Churchill is rarely considered strictly through the framework of his military leadership. D'Este uses archival materials from the family of Lord Marlborough to illustrate the childhood lifestyle and military ambitions of Churchill. He explores the strategies that Churchill employed during major military campaigns in World War I and World War II, some of which brought him tremendous success and others of which brought disastrous failures. He characterizes the relationships that Churchill had with the Generals who served him as Prime Minister as well as with other Allied commanders such as Dwight D. Eisenhower. This is a fascinating read that provides a personal example of the overlap between political and military leadership during wartime.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Warlord: A Life of Winston Churchill at War, 1874-1945
Carlo D'Este
DA 566.9 .C5 D47 2008

Value Stream Management for the Lean Office

Office functions, often called "administrative overhead," can represent up to 80% of the cost of doing business. By making these processes as lean as possible and cutting out wasted time and expense, your organization can increase both its efficiency and its profit margin. Using the concepts of Lean Six Sigma, this book works through a series of case studies that demonstrate how to map existing processes and how to make changes that will make them leaner. The book introduces a wide variety of visualization tools, charts, diagrams, and symbols for representing people, processes and physical space and explains how simple changes may produce drastically improved flow throughout the office.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Value Stream Management for the Lean Office: Eight Steps to Planning, Mapping, and Sustaining Lean Improvements in Administrative Areas
Don Tapping and Tom Shuker
HF 5547 .T35 2003

March 20, 2009


This is a treatise on sand--in all of its aspects. Written by a geologist, Welland details the physics of granular materials, sendimentology, sand's role in paleontology and archeology, and the rich history of human interaction with sand. In addition to the science, Welland weaves in stories of artists, explorers, storytellers, showing how sand has been involved in the creation and destruction of civilizations. His vivid writing show how intertwined human lives are with sand and illustrate, both visually and linguistically, the role it has played in our history.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Sand: The Never-ending Story
Michael Welland
QE 471.15 .S25 W455 2009

Putting our Differences to Work

Kennedy asserts that if people who are naturally different are able to work together effectively, their synergy drives creativity, innovation, problem solving, and enhances leadership and performance for the entire team. This book illustrates how to look beyond traditional diversities such as race, gender, and ethnicity to identify thinking styles, perspectives, experiences, and work styles. She identifies five qualities that leaders must add to their toolboxes in order to capitalize on diversity: they must make diversity in all of its aspects a priority, get to know their people and the differences that the bring into play, enable communication, hold each individual personally responsible, and to make dependence on each other the primary value for the team. She provides step-by-step processes for putting differences to work in the workplace using personal anecdotes, strategic and tactical ideas for putting the theories into practice.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Putting Our Differences to Work: The Fastest Way to Innovation, Leadership and High Performance
Debbe Kennedy
HF 5549 .M5 K46 2008

March 13, 2009

The Trophy Kids Grow Up

Those born between 1980 and 2001 are often called the Millennial Generation. The first of this group are now entering the workforce, creating some of the biggest management challenges for employers that have been seen since the baby-boom. Told from the perspective of the millennials themselves, as well as through the voices of their parents teachers, and workplace recruiters and supervisors, this book paints a picture of what this generation is like. They are described as hard working and achievement oriented, but lacking in independence. They like the flexibility of working virtually, but want rules and responsibilities to be stated explicitly. They are demanding and believe that everything is all about them, yet, they are philanthropic, giving, and civic minded. This book helps employers to understand these new workers. It suggests how to recruit and retain their skills to the workplace. It also discusses their home life and relationship to their parents, who unlike previous generations, remain an active component of their adult children's lives.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

The Trophy Kids Grow Up: How the Millenial Generation is Shaking Up the Workplace
Ron Alsop
HD 6270 .A44 2008

Sustainability Indicators

This book recommends that sustainability be assessed holistically, including qualitative measures, rather than by taking a strictly quantitative approach. In this second edition, that perspective is shown to be well grounded in evidence. Bell and Morse examine the origins and development of Systemic Sustainability Analysis. They describe how this primarily theoretical approach to analyzing climate change has developed into a practical approach and how participatory methods have been adapted to work with it. They also provide an assessment of strengths and weaknesses of projects in the field of sustainable development.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Sustainability Indicators: Measuring the Immeasurable?
Simon Bell & Stephen Morse
2nd ed
GE 140 .B45 2008

March 11, 2009

Divide of Conquer

Great teams don't assume that people get along. In fact, they anticipate that there will be some conflict and use it to strengthen the relationship between the individuals. Using stories from many corporate examples, McLain Smith illustrates how to understand relationships, to recognize what works and what doesn't in them, and change your own behavior to reduce conflicts and reframe how you see your co-workers. It also makes practical suggestions on how you can change your behaviors and rsponses to others and motivate others to change as well.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Divide or Conquer: How Great Teams Turn Conflict into Strength
Diana McLain Smith
HD 66 .S625 2008

Ready-to-Use Performance Appraisals

This book is designed for managers who dread writing performance reviews. It provides language to describe what an employee is doing right and wrong, trying to strike a balance between praise and criticism. It includes worksheets and customizable statements to describe employee skills such as communication, teamwork, initiative, and professionalism. It also describes supervisory skills such as leadership, managing others, and thinking strategically. This is a useful guide for supervisors of employees at all levels.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Ready-to-Use Performance Appraisals: Downloadable, Customizable Tools for Better, Faster Reviews!
William S. Swan with Leslie E. Wilson
HF 5549.5.R3 S8122 2007

March 6, 2009

Kosovo and the Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention

The conflict over Kosovo has the potential to prompt significant changes in international politics. It has involved major world powers as both agressors and peacekeepers. Regional organizations have been drawn in to the conflict, and many participants have raised this issue to the United Nations . Considerable questions remain surrounding how this conflict can be resolved while enforcing international resolutions, protecting the humanitarian interests of the population, and respecting the sovereignty of the nations involved. This book offers a complex analysis from many perspectives, both those immediately involved in the conflict as well as those futher from it. This case study is framed by discussions of how this situation may have lasting effects on international relations and world politics.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Kosovo and the Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention: Selective Indignation, Collective Action, and International Citizenship
Edited by Albrecht Schnabel and Ramesh Thakur
DR 2007 .K665 2000

March 4, 2009

Drive Business Performance

Aziza and Fitts build on the work of Robert Kaplan and David Norton, developers of the Balanced Scorecard method for measuring business performance. In this book, they describe how to align technology with business performance so that it can effectively be measured. Chapters describe the six stages of performance management. The first of these describes the six stages and explains the relationship between them. Chapters that follow focus on the stages: managing performance, monitoring, analyzing, planning, and pulling the data together.

This book can be found in HECSA Library:

Drive Business Performance: Enabling a Culture of Intelligent Execution
Bruno Aziza and Joey Fitts
HD 31 .A984 2008

Journal Alerts Delivered to your Email

Do you have paper journals routed to you? Now you can receive an email alert instead when new issues are published. It is the perfect way to keep up-to-date on research topics, and you won't have to wait for the paper copy to reach your desk.