MPA@UNC Blog


Our 10 Favorite Public Servants from Pop Culture

Heroes and villains get all the press coverage, but it is the humble public servant, patiently toiling away at paperwork, tackling administrative duties, and ferociously juggling the minutiae most of us never see that keep our communities (both real and fictional) running smoothly...

David Bismark: E-Voting Without Fraud

Headlines around the world testify to the fraud and human error often associated with elections. From missing ballot boxes and corrupt pollsters to dangling chads and computer hackers, it is no secret that voting is not a perfect system. David Bismarck designs voting systems. He has never run for office, nor is he a public official. Bismarck simply recognized the flaws with current democratic voting systems and worked with colleagues to develop a new one...

The Power of Visionary Leadership

United States Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus presented the 2012 Deil S. Wright Lecture, “Leadership in Service,” on November 1, 2012. The 75th leader of America’s Navy and Marine Corps, Secretary Mabus is responsible for an annual budget of $160 billion and a workforce of approximately 900,000 people...

10 Innovative Transportation Infrastructure Projects

Transportation infrastructure projects have a history of innovation in the United States. Engineers and urban designers often find themselves looking for new ways to reconstruct aging systems that are no longer able to handle the capacity of the people using them, or they need to create a new structure around an existing one. While these kinds of challenges breed innovation, so do the challenges of finding funding...

Happy 50th Birthday, ZIP Codes!

The ZIP code is 50 years old, which means today is the day to take some time to learn about those five little digits we all take for granted. We’ll start with the basics: learning what this acronym means. ZIP stands for Zoning Improvement Plan, and it was put into place in July of 1963 as a way to manage the extreme increase in the amount of mail being sent around the country...

The Marketplace Fairness Act and State Tax Revenue

Since e-commerce first blossomed, hundreds, possibly thousands, of brick-and-mortar stores have disappeared. Some were mom-and-pop operations, but the big names have not been exempt. For example, who would have foreseen the disappearance of Borders Books?...