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Established in 2005 under the EGPA strategic plan 2004-07, the Transatlantic Dialogues (TADs) is a series of conferences that was initiated to address contemporary issues and challenges in public governance, public administration and public management arising from both sides of the Atlantic and to gather academics and practitioners around the joint investigation of key topics through comparative methods and approaches.
The leading role in conceiving the TADs series and getting it to take off and thrive was performed by Geert Bouckaert, who at the time of the commencement of the series was President of EGPA and Director of the Institute for Public Management (now Institute for Public Governance) at the Catholic University of Leuven - KU Leuven. He was soon joined, on the other side of the Atlantic, by Marc Holzer, at the time Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA) at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, who decisively contributed to make the American Society of Public Administration (ASPA) to join EGPA in this venture. Rutgers has since been the holder of the ASPA Memorandum of Understanding for ASPA and hence in charge for the ASPA side to organize the TADs series. Marc was soon flanked at Rutgers by Norma Riccucci who provided a major contribution throughout. Maria Aristigueta at University of Delaware organized the first TAD held on American soil, in 2007, and massively contributed to the development of the dialogues.
Since then, over thirty Conference Co-Chairs, over 150 Workshop Co-Chairs and fourteen ASPA Presidents from the American side (flanked by the total support of the successive directors of ASPA, currently William - Bill - P. Shields Jr.) and three EGPA Presidents from the European side (with the invaluable support of Fabienne Maron, currently scientific director of IIAS and for fifteen years also executive secretary to EGPA) have enabled and supported the TADs. And, of course, a total of nearly a thousand participants (at the time this book goes to press) have contributed to make the successive TAD conferences a success.
The main purpose of TADs is to bridge the two scholarly communities – American and European - and the respective traditions of research and cognitive paths in such a way that new syntheses may arise, with the ultimate purpose of furthering research and developing a common research agenda across the two sides of the Atlantic. The series is nowadays a mainstay in public administration: it has become an “institutional venue for the entire field of public administration, not just in Europe and the US, but worldwide.
The European Group for Public Administration (EGPA) is the regional group of the International Institute of Administrative Sciences (IIAS). EGPA provides a major contribution to IIAS 'mission: to develop public administration and public service at European and global level. The EGPA aims to be the European platform for public administration by bringing together academics and practitioners. EGPA contributes to the development of science and research (‘PA as Science’) in public administration through its 22 Permanent Study Groups and its specialized seminars on relevant contemporary themes. GEAP also contributes to the development of the profession ('art and craft') by providing a unique platform for exchanging best practices that support the work of public administrations and practitioners.
The American Society for Public Administration is the leading interdisciplinary public service organization that advances the art, science, teaching, and practice of public and non-profit administration, promotes the value of joining and elevating the public service profession, builds bridges among all who pursue public purposes at home and internationally, provides networking and professional development opportunities to those committed to public service values, and achieves innovative solutions to the challenges of governance.
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