Game / Outside Game David Book Review

Pages: 5 (1475 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 2  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Urban Studies

One of the most valuable contributions of Rusk's book is his use of census statistics to illustrate many of his concepts. This adds a great deal of credence to his theories, and is a profound addition to the anecdotal evidence. Despite this, many of his statistical claims are based on correlational, rather than causational, data.

In addition to his scholarly focus on the presentation of data and theory, Rusk is also careful to focus his book closely on personal and human costs of urban malaise. Rusk writes, "successful political reform movements are not about data. They are about real people in real situations: inspired legislators, courageous city and county officials, determined citizen activists. I hope that the success stories told here will inspire some readers to step forward in their own communities."

Rusk's book can make an important contribution to public policy discussions in city planning. The concepts of affordable housing programs, tax bases, and coordinating land use are germane to almost all cities in the United States today. Further, the challenge of improving the quality of life in inner cities is also a widespread problem. Rusk's focus on the connectedness of urban revitalization and the management of suburban growth, tax reform, and fair share housing practices is thus widely applicable. His focus on building coalitions is also germane to discussions of poverty in urban areas, affordability of housing, planning of transportation and sustaining the environment.Buy full Download Microsoft Word File paper
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Book Review on Game / Outside Game David Assignment

Rusk's arguments relate closely to a number of themes that are found in the classic text Managing Urban America, written originally in 1979 by David R. Morgan and Robert E. England. Morgan and England argue that America's cities are falling into decline. They quote Cleveland mayor Michael White, who said, "cities are becoming a codename for crumbling neighborhoods." large part of this decline in urban neighborhoods, note the authors, comes from declines in difficulties in obtaining federal grants, and massive overregulation in administration. Shrinking federal funding for cities has also played a key role in the decline of cities, note the authors. For example, federal aid dropped 55% from 1980 and 1987. Importantly, the authors note that tax bases in cities are shrinking. At the same time, inner city poverty is high and employment is limited.

This decreased tax base in cities relates closely to the concepts discussed by Rusk in Inside Game / Outside Game. Rusk argues that changes in taxation in the "outside game" outside of the urban centers is a key component in improving and reforming metropolitan regions.

Many of the administrative and bureaucratic problems in city governments noted by Morgan and England may impact the types of changes suggested by Rusk.

Discouragingly, Morgan and England note, "Bureaucratic infighting and agency imperialism are complicating the task of government. Personnel conflict is anything but unusual in government. Our cities have enormous problems." If true, this type of bureaucratic inefficiency potentially poses an enormous problem for the collaborative work that Rusk urges must be done in order to revitalize cities.

Further, Morgan and England's assertion that economic interests and corporations exert a powerful influence on local governments also suggests that Rusk's ideas of collaboration for the inner city face some important challenges. Economic and business interests are likely the most interested in furthering their own ends than in revitalizing cities. Note Morgan and England, "Upper-income and business groups seek a political climate favorable to their growth and economic development. They are not true social reformers. They are interested in perpetuating the political agenda of the business community." Further, the authors suggest, "the government is gravitating towards policies with immediate payoffs, avoiding those that produce long-term effects."

In conclusion, Rusk's book is a useful and welcome addition to the literature on urban management and public administration. Rusk makes a persuasive and well documented argument that improving inner city neighborhoods requires a concentrated, coordinated effort with strategies focused on reducing concentrated poverty, urban sprawl, and growing financial disparities. However, Rusk's collaborative emphasis seems to be a difficult tactic, when taken in the larger context of Morgan and England's understanding of the administrative and bureaucratic problems in city governments that are largely controlled by economic considerations. In short, while Rusk's work is useful and insightful, it may be limited by the interests and bureaucracy of city governments.


Morgan, David R. And England, Robert E. 1999. Managing Urban America (Public Administration and Public Policy), 5th edition. Chatham House Publishers.

Rusk, David. 1999. Inside… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Game / Outside Game David" Book Review in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Game / Outside Game David.  (2004, July 1).  Retrieved September 26, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Game / Outside Game David."  1 July 2004.  Web.  26 September 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Game / Outside Game David."  July 1, 2004.  Accessed September 26, 2020.