PUBLIC SERVICE LEADERSHIP
2018/2019, Semester 1
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (Lee Kuan Yew School Of Public Policy)
Modular Credits: 4
This module will help students to understand the concepts and practice of leadership and develop a better knowledge of public service. Students will be exposed to insights and best practices, with emphasis on the public service and learn the skills to develop into a capable leader. Students will learn to lead, anticipate the future, make decisions, know their bias, build teams, motivate, communicate, understand the public interest and become better leaders.
PP5168 PUBLIC SERVICE LEADERSHIP
2018-2019 Semester 1
Tan Yong Soon
will help the student to better understand the concepts and practice of leadership and develop a better knowledge of public service.
The student will acquire the knowledge and skills to develop as a capable leader.
A leader must be able to lead change, anticipate the future, make good decisions, know his/her bias, build teams, motivate people, communicate, exercise self-leadership and
make a positive difference in the lives of others
We all exercise leadership at every level and position, w
hether we work in the public, private, or people sector. We must
develop a good understanding of leadership and knowledge of public service.
The teaching format will be based on a mix of lectures and discussion.
The student will be exposed to insights and best practices of leadership
Weekly readings will be provided and kept manageable.
Case studies will be drawn from across different countries,
with emphasis on the public service.
Useful supplementary readings will be suggested.
No required book need be purchased.
Students are required to attend class and participate actively in discussion, including presentation of assigned readings and case study materials, and occasionally on assigned topics.
Class participation accounts for 20% of the overall grade
Students are required to submit
three written assignments, which will together account for 80% of the overall grade
, as follows:
a paper on leading change
an exercise on scenarios (25%); and
a paper on exercising leadership (30%).
There will be no written examination in this module.
Week 1 (13 Aug)
A brief outline of the course, followed by Q & A
Change is perpetual and necessary. Organisations that fail to adapt, fail. The leader must be able to drive successful transformation.
How to bring about successful transformation? What are some of the main reasons for failure? The class will discuss John Kotter’s 8-step framework on leading change.
The class will also discuss how Michelle Rhee tried to reform the Washington DC Public Schools in 2007-2010 and analyses her leadership.
Managers and Leaders- Are They Different?
HBR March-Apr 1992 (originally May-June 1977)
What Leaders Really Do?
HBR May-June 1990
, HBR Jan 2007 (originally 1995)
Michelle Rhee and the Washington DC Public Schools (HKS Case 2012)
Week 2 (20 Aug)
Leading Change (cont’d)
Continue discussion on how to drive successful transformation.
Moving from education to crime, the class will discuss how Bill Bratton tackled the crime situation and transformed policing in New York City in 1994-6, as well as issues such as the Broken Window Theory of policing.
, HBR Nov 2012
Assertive Policing, Plummeting Crime: The NYPD Takes on Crime in New York City (HKS Case 1999)
John Kotter and Dan Cohen,
The Heart of Change
, HBS Press 2002
(Assignment 1 on Leading Change will be handed out at the Week 3 Session.)
Week 3 (27 Aug)
Anticipating the Future,
Scenario Planning and Managing Uncertainty
A leader must be able to look ahead and deal with uncertainties. Scenario planning is a structured way for organisations to think about the future. The class will discuss the power of scenarios, its uses and abuses, and how to construct scenarios, using examples from Shell and others.
Scenario Planning: A Tool for Strategic Thinking
, MIT Sloan Management Review Winter 1995
Angela Wilkinson and Roland Kupers,
Living in the Futures
, HBR May 2013
Scenarios: Uncharted Waters Ahead
, HBR Sep/Oct 1985
Scenarios: Shooting the Rapids
, HBR Nov/Dec 1985
Using Scenarios to Plan for Tomorrow
, IESEinsight First Quarter 2012
The Art of the Long View: Planning for the Future in an Uncertain World
, Doubleday 1991
Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner,
Super-Forecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction
, Random House 2016
Week 4 (3 Sep)
Scenario Planning (cont’d)
The class will discuss how scenarios, after they have been developed, can be used to help develop a strategic plan.
The class will also discuss climate change
and take a look at how climate change was being tackled at King County
an exercise in long-term thinking and confrontation with uncertainty.
The Challenge of Adapting to Climate Change: King County Brings Local Action to a Global Threat (2009)
Kees Van der Heijden,
Scenarios: The Art of Strategic Conversation
, John Wiley & sons, 1996
The IPCC’s (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) Nov 2014
(Assignment 2 on Scenarios will be handed out the Week 5 session.)
Week 5 (10 Sep)
Framing the issue
Knowing our bias and
The leader must know how to frame the issue correctly. If we frame it wrongly, are unaware of our bias and do not know what we don’t know, then we will not be able to derive the solutions to make the right decision.
John Hammond, Ralph Keeney and Howard Raiffa,
The Hidden Traps in Decision Making
, Jan 2006 (originally 1998)
Thinking, Fast and Slow
, FSG 2011
Week 6 (17 Sep
): Team Decision Making and Working across agencies
Often we don’t work alone. None of us is as smart as all of us. We need teams. How does a leader ensure the team makes good decisions?
The class will study and discuss the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis incidents.
David Garvin and Michael Roberto,
What you don’t know
about making decisions
, HBR Sep 2001
, Norton 1969
Recess Week (24 Sep)
7 (1 Oct)
Motivating People and Team Building
A leader has to communicate his/her vision and motivate people. Communications is as important if not more than the substance itself.
The class will discuss how a leader communicates effectively and
how to motivate people to get the best from them.
, HBR Oct 2013
(Deadline for submitting Written Assignment 1 by 1 Oct 1pm)
7A (3 Oct 6-9pm)
A leader must know how to manage a crisis. He/she must be present; be able to engender confidence, demonstrate responsibility and accountability and thereby authority.
The class will look at the examples of NYC 9/11, SARS and the BP Oil Spill 2010.
Five Leadership Lessons from the BP Oil Spill
, HBR June 28 2010
The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: The Politics of Crisis Response (A) (HKS Case 2013)
The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: The Politics of Crisis Response (B) (HKS Case 2013)
Hong Kong Copes with SARS, 2003: The Amoy Gardens (HKS Case 2004)
(Assignment 3 on Leadership will be handed out at the Week 8 session.)
Week 8 (8 Oct)
Innovation, Bureaucracy, Privatization and Regulation
Cancun, Mexico: Water System Privatization (HKS Case 2000)
Taking a Therapeutic Approach to Juvenile Offenders: The “Missouri” Model (HKS case 2009)
Koen Frenken, Toon Meelen, Martijn Arets and Pieter van de Glind,
Smarter regulation for the sharing economy
, The Guardian 20 May 2015
Week 9 (15 Oct)
Understanding Ourselves and Self-Leadership
A leader must know how to manage oneself
To succeed at work, we need to know ourselves – our strengths, our values and how we best perform. We need to know
how to manage relationships, both work (our boss, peers and subordinates) and personal.
Peter Drucker, Managing Oneself, HBR Jan 2005 Reprint (Best of HBR 1999)
John Gabarro and John Kotter, Managing Your Boss, HBR Jan 2005 Reprint
Clayton Christensen, How Will you measure your life, HBR July-Aug 2010
Stephen Covey, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
(Deadline for submitting Written Assignment 2 by 15 Oct 1pm)
Week 10 (22 Oct): No class. Made up on 3 Oct
Week 11 (29 Oct)
A leader must be an active citizen.
What are our roles, responsibilities and obligations as citizens? What do we expect from our government? What are good principles of governance?
Public Service and the Public Interest
Tan YS, Lee TJ, Karen Tan,
Clean, Green and Blue: Singapore’s Journey Towards Environmental and Water Sustainability
, ISEAS Publishing 2009 Chapter One
Justice: What’s the Right Thing to do?
FSG 2010, Chapter One (Doing the Right Thing) and Chapter Ten (Justice and the Common Good)
Week 12 (5 Nov)
Working Towards Better Public Services and Leadership
General Discussion and Presentation
The Authencity Paradox
, HBR Jan-Feb 2015
Diane L Coutu, How Resilience Works, HBR May 2002
Week 13 (12 Nov)
Summary and class discussion
(Deadline for submitting Written Assignment 3 on by 12 Nov 1pm)
About the Instructor:
Prof Tan Yong Soon has, over 35 years with the Singapore Public Service, held appointments of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, Permanent Secretary (National Climate Change) in the Prime Minister’s Office, Deputy Secretary (Revenue) and Deputy Secretary (Policy) in the Ministry of Finance, Deputy Secretary (Policy) in the Ministry of Defence, CEO of the Urban Redevelopment Authority and Principal Private Secretary to the Prime Minister.
He holds a BA(Hons) and MA in Engineering from Cambridge University, an MBA from the National University of Singapore and an MPA from Harvard University. He has completed the Advanced Management Programme at Harvard Business School.
Workload Components : A-B-C-D-E
A: no. of lecture hours per week
B: no. of tutorial hours per week
C: no. of lab hours per week
D: no. of hours for projects, assignments, fieldwork etc per week
E: no. of hours for preparatory work by a student per week