Advocacy of neighborhood government should be based on a careful assessment of possible dangers and deficiencies, as well as merits. The obstacles to increasing neighborhood power include the costs of community organizing in terms of time and effort, community conflict, city-neighborhood conflict, and general political conflict. To persuade individuals to engage in collective action, it is necessary that the rewards of such action be greater than the personal costs. Serious participation is likely to occur only when neighborhood government programs offer visible rewards and work to solve concrete problems. There is a specific awareness that many unions and politicians will fight neighborhood government and that they have the power to damage or destroy it. There is also the sense that, whereas there has been success in developing community structures, it has been difficult to move government toward decentralization, toward more flexible administrative procedures. 13 pp. Ref.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.
Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.