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North Dakota’s Legacy Fund: Saving for the Future


BY BRYAN CORTES States with booming economies have the opportunity to set up tax revenue funds with interest that will provide for future generations. This summer in North Dakota, I learned this firsthand. As a Dukakis Fellow in office of the Governor of North Dakota, I was charged with conducting a balance sheet assessment for […]

North Carolina’s Grants Help Students Get to the Finish Line


BY WILL LINDSEY As a proud North Carolinian, I’ve frequently found myself explaining the state’s policies and politics to critics. For citizens of our state, it feels like we can’t catch a break. I don’t think the country will soon forget the stain of NC House Bill 2 in 2016. The bill removed anti-discrimination protections […]

Reimagining Transportation in Massachusetts


Agile, iterative, pilot, scrum—these phrases may be common in the world of software development, but one would hardly expect to hear them tossed around the austere marble corridors of state government.  Yet they are common parlance in the Massachusetts Governor’s Office, where a nimble squad of problem-solvers is using every cutting-edge tool in the toolbox […]

Cities and Communities

Closing the Jobs Gap from Behind Prison Walls in Pennsylvania


BY LAURA WHITE Workforce development had been a frequent news topic in the months preceding my summer at the Governor’s Office in Pennsylvania—from announcements about an executive order on apprenticeships, to predictions about the automation of large swaths of the workforce. Yet I rarely saw in the media the one place where I would find […]

Energy Dependence and Environmental Conservation in Alaska


BY MICHELLE LIU The placards are subtle. I missed the first small signs with dates on the Exit Glacier Trail. I was rushing to hike the Harding Ice Field and I was preoccupied anticipating Alaska’s unpredictable weather and my next eight miles. However, even I noticed placards with random numbers 1891, 1899, 1917…along the rainforest […]

Conservation is a Winning Strategy for Montana


BY CHUCK ARRSAUYAQ HERMAN Montana is home to the world’s first national park and also home to a toxic man-made lake, a mile-long and 1,800 feet deep, created by a now defunct copper mine. The state is well-acquainted with the traditional clash between resource-extraction and conservation. But that may be changing. I spent the summer […]

Marijuana in Maine: A Case Study in Bipartisanship


Paul LePage (R-ME) is America’s most conservative governor, and a reliable headline. For ten weeks this summer, he was also my boss. After years of talking the bipartisan talk, I was ready to walk the bipartisan walk as Maine’s inaugural Dukakis Fellow. Beyond building a résumé that joins Michael Dukakis (D-MA) and Paul LePage in […]


Designing Opioid Strategies in Rhode Island


BY MAGGIE SALINGER The morning seemed like any other in the Rhode Island State House until my team received a chilling email. It was a note from a local father, whom I’ll call John, still reeling from the loss of his son. Days before his son died of an opioid overdose, John had dragged him […]

The Key to Reducing Carbon Emissions: Revolutionizing Mobility


BY AMY ZHOU Even non-Californians took notice of what Governor Jerry Brown has been up to this summer. Following through on his public denouncement of President Trump’s stance on climate change, Brown traveled to China for a high-profile meeting with Xi Jinping and signed an extension of his landmark cap-and-trade program to 2030 into law. […]

Interview with Governor Michael Dukakis: Shifting Racial Attitudes, Grassroots Organizing, and Public Service


BY JAMES PAGANO To kick off the Kennedy School Review’s special series In the Statehouse, Governor Dukakis spoke with me about what drew him to politics, how racial attitudes in Massachusetts have changed over time, his own advice for policy students interested in state government, and his aspirations for a more united Democratic Party. Michael […]

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