The School offers the following books relating to performance measurement and benchmarking.


Municipal Benchmarks: Assessing Local Performance and Establishing Community Standards, Third Edition
David N. Ammons
Thursday, March 15, 2012


View inside the book or buy the book from the publisher, Routledge.

Completely updated with new listings and statistics throughout, this comprehensive resource gives urban experts, municipal leaders, management analysts, and pre-professionals essential practical tools to establish and assess a municipality's performance in all areas of operation. It goes beyond the current literature on local government performance measurement and offers benchmarks on more than 40 key topics against which performance can be assessed.

The book includes relevant national standards developed by professional associations and actual performance targets, as well as performance results from a large selection of respected city governments. This edition provides new or expanded listings of professional standards across the full array of municipal functions. Two all-new chapters cover economic development and benchmarks for municipal airports, call centers, mail centers, print shops, and public information offices. Performance statistics for more than 250 city governments help public management professionals keep abreast of the most current information available. Originally published by M.E. Sharpe, Inc., the book is now available from Routledge.

"David Ammons has assembled a remarkable volume of benchmark data for a comprehensive range of municipal government services. Municipal Benchmarks will be of considerable help for municipalities in laying the groundwork for an accountable government."

Harry Hatry
Director, Public Management Program
The Urban Institute

"As a long time practitioner of progressive management in local government, I am delighted to see that ideas for advancing our industry are alive and thriving. David Ammons' collection of municipal benchmarks does an incredible service to every municipal manager in the country, and perhaps the world. These benchmarks clearly set standardized ways of looking at measuring the performance of municipal service delivery."

Ted Gaebler
City Manager, Rancho Cordoba, California
(co-author of Reinventing Government)

Performance Budgeting for State and Local Government, Second Edition
William C. Rivenbark, Janet M. Kelly
Wednesday, September 22, 2010

This book describes performance budgeting as the integration of performance management components (planning, performance measurement, and benchmarking) into the three phases of the budget cycle used by state and local governments: budget development, budget implementation, and budget evaluation. The result is a comprehensive theoretical and practical framework for informing budget decisions. Janet M. Kelly and William C. Rivenbark enliven the text with frequent references to their original research and personal experiences with performance measurement, citizen satisfaction surveys, and financial management practices. The book also includes several case studies in performance budgeting and interviews with managers and practitioners.

Changes in the Second Edition include:

  • increased coverage of cost accounting procedures,
  • more attention to the role of citizen participation in performance management,
  • expanded focus to encompass budget implementation and evaluation, not just budget development, and
  • enhanced coverage of the management tools used to support performance budgeting, including long-term planning and the “balanced scorecard.”

Designed for use in undergraduate and graduate level courses in public budgeting/financial management, this book is equally useful for any student or practitioner involved in performance-based management.

“Kelly and Rivenbark’s thoughtful and well-written book on performance budgeting at the state and local level offers a combination of advocacy and technical assistance, providing historical context, real examples, and provocative discussions.”

Irene S. Rubin 
Northern Illinois University

“This book offers a refreshing approach to the topic by setting aside unconditional optimism and cheerleading for performance budgeting in exchange for a realistic, cautionary, and practical approach. Expanding beyond the parameters of a traditional textbook, the authors have truly integrated theory and practice to educate academics, students, and practitioners about what actually works for public organizations—and why.”

Deborah A. Carroll
University of Georgia
A Performance Management Framework for State and Local Government: From Measurement and Reporting to Management and Improving
Friday, January 1, 2010

The National Performance Management Advisory Commission, which includes School of Government faculty member David Ammons, has released this report to help governments move beyond measuring—and reporting those measures—to managing performance toward improved results. The commission created the framework expressly for public managers and public officials, who must provide leadership for initiating and sustaining performance management. The report was produced and distributed by the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA).

Tools for Decision Making: A Practical Guide for Local Government, Second Edition
David N. Ammons
Thursday, October 23, 2008

Buy this book from the publisher, Sage Publications

Here is a helpful assortment of analytical tools to help local government officials make decisions daily in order to maximize efficiency and equity. Whether utilizing performance standards, making adjustments for inflation, or choosing to contract out a service, decision makers will use this book to employ field-tested techniques when dealing with politically charged situations.

"Tools for Decision Making is a very 'user-friendly' book that can be used in policy analysis or financial management courses in upper-division or graduate instruction. Ammons uses excellent examples that place tools in realistic and appropriate context for typical public administration students."  Howard Frank, Florida International University

"David Ammons' Tools for Decision Making gives readers a practical (and necessary) discussion of analytical techniques that are useful in real-life governmental decision making. Managers will find that these 'tools' provide a sound basis for making decisions under practical working conditions. Students will greatly benefit from it as well: learning how today's managers make quality decisions within short time frames, with limited resources is a crucial lesson. Further, in contrast to many books on similar topics, Tools for Decision Making is extremely readable and easy to understand." 
 Frank Fairbanks, City Manager, Phoenix, Arizona

"David Ammons has written a book that every public administration student and administrator should review. Tools for Decision Making is a goldmine of ideas for improving services. It makes difficult-sounding management techniques very understandable. I caution owners of the book to be leery of those who seek to borrow it; else it may go the same way as the trusty hammer and saw." 
 W. Bartley Hildreth, Wichita State University