Working with a City Government

RAND's Experience in New York

by Peter L. Szanton


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A look at the evolution of RAND research on urban problems in New York City. Since initial contracts for a handful of studies were signed in January 1968, involvement with substantive city problems has led to creation of The New York City-RAND Institute, a nonprofit corporation with its own board of trustees and 85 professional analysts at work on more than 40 separate studies for nine city agencies. In this Memorandum, originally delivered as an address before the National Academy of Engineering, the author examines the link between researcher and decisionmaker — the intricate process of involving municipal administrators as participants in the research effort to enable them to make the best, most creative use of modern analytic techniques. The results: the first attempt by a major city government and a research institution to establish a center for the continuing application of science and analytic techniques to problems of urban life and local government.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation research memorandum series. The Research Memorandum was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1973 that represented working papers meant to report current results of RAND research to appropriate audiences.

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