For an archive of the program with viewable papers, click here

The Public Values Consortium 5th Biennial Workshop 2016

 School of Public Affairs and Center for Organization Research and Design

Arizona State University

January 7 & 8, 2016

Since the inaugural Workshop of the Copenhagen Public Values Consortium in 2008 research and theory on public values has advanced considerably. The span of time between then and now has seen economic collapse and partial recovery, growing income inequality in many nations, collapse of housing markets, new forms of warfare, threats to survival of the European Union. In short, threats to various aspects of public values have been witnessed. Nevertheless, there are only limited shifts in the dominant political ordering of public values, i.e. traditional neoliberal economic policies of governing remain dominated by market failure notes of government-as-residual. The need to reflect upon the nexus of economic value and public value and the respective roles of governments and markets has never been greater.

The 5th Biennial Workshop will seek to consolidate knowledge of public values developed up to this point, including but not limited to works specifically presented at the four previous Workshops. To this end, a featured panel will include five participants who have either organized or hosted a previous Workshop or who have attended all or most. The questions for the panel: “What has been learned? What knowledge gaps remain?”

A special panel will be developed to honor Professor Torben Beck Jorgensen, recently deceased .Torben was an originator of the Public Value Workshop, hosting the first one in Copenhagen. During the last half of his long and distinguished career, this work focused on public values and he provided many seminal works on the topic. The panel will be a retrospective on his contributions to public values research and theory.

Otherwise, the panels will be based on the interests of participants as well as three core themes that have not yet been addressed in previous Workshops. These include:

1. The Role of Race, Gender and Ethnicity in Public Values.

This is a particularly useful concern for a Workshop located in multicultural Phoenix. Any of a variety of topics might prove useful, including, for example, the ways in which gender identities in societies mitigate the needs and responses to public value; how race and ethnicity interact with political culture to affect public value; the impact of diversity as a public value. Other issues include, how collective social, cultural, and political capital vary across race and ethnicity and influence the extent to which public values are achieved. How do public values change according to the target racial/ethnic or gender group?

2. Income Inequality, Opportunity and Public Values.

There is an increasing awareness in the academic and political worlds, not to mention among the oppressed, that income inequality often increases even as economies become more productive. The “trickle down” theories of economic productivity are called sharply into question. To what extent is income inequality a “public values failure”? Are there noneconomic, nonmarket approaches or business-government partnership approaches that can enhance opportunity and mitigate social stagnation? Or, is the downfall of social equity collateral damage in the attempt to resolve the economic crisis? How can entrepreneurship (which is a public value) be better realized among lower-income populations?

3. Public Values in Private Organizations

Public values need not be the sole preserve of government. Oftentimes private organizations provide public values, either as part of their missions or as contractors. Some questions to be addressed: Why do some private organizations, including market-based businesses, include public values as part of their missions? What are the effects of doing so for both the organizations and for society? Is there a role for cooperation among private organizations in pursuit of public values? On what points (e.g. sustainability) do public and private values converge?

4. Teaching Public Values.

This is a topic that has been prominent in previous Workshops but since educational innovations in public values continue, it is worthwhile revisiting this topic. Some new topics in this familiar category are particularly welcome including: collaborative teaching modalities and public values, service learning and public values, and can public values be taught in online courses or in MOOCs?

To reiterate, submissions on topics other than the above are quite welcome. All Workshops have had a strong knowledge “supplier,” participative focus.


Participation is open those presenting papers or acting as panelists or discussants. Due to size constraints and a desire for active participation, the workshop will be limited to 35 participants (not including local ASU students and researchers). Submitted abstracts, papers and panel proposals will be reviewed by the program committee. The program committee includes: Barry Bozeman (Chair), Mary Feeney, Tom Catlaw, Marla Parker, Zeger van der Wal and Mark Rutgers.

Abstract Submission

Abstracts (300-500 words) or completed papers that have not been presented elsewhere should be submitted to the Workshop Administrator, Mary O’Brien ( Review of papers and abstracts will be completed one week after submission. Accepted papers should be provided to the Program Committee (directed to Mary O’Brien) by December 30, 2015.

Tentative Program:

  •  Thursday, January 7, Pre-conference Welcome and Reception
  •  Friday, January 8, Sessions, Evening Dinner


The workshop will take place at the Center for Organizational Research and Design, 411 Central Ave., Suite 480, Arizona State University, Phoenix, AZ. Information about lodging and transportation alternatives will be made available with a few weeks and will be posted on the CORD website.

Transportation and Lodging Info are Now Available Here