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The Synoptic Model of Strategic Planning and the GPRA: Lacking a Good Fit with the Political Context

Nancy Roberts
Public Productivity & Management Review
Vol. 23, No. 3 (Mar., 2000), pp. 297-311
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
DOI: 10.2307/3380721
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3380721
Page Count: 15
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The Synoptic Model of Strategic Planning and the GPRA: Lacking a Good Fit with the Political Context
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Abstract

Embedded in the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) is one model of strategic planning--the synoptic approach--and the assumption that the synoptic model of strategic planning fits all situations and bureaus no matter what their context or situation. This article documents the many challenges and problems that agencies have experienced as they attempt to implement the GPRA and posits that many of these difficulties can be linked to the strategic planning model that is being used. To sustain the GPRA and prevent erosion of its basic intent, the article recommends that policy makers consider the use of alternative models of strategic planning, in particular, the strategic issues approach. The article summarizes the advantages of the model and recommends that the GPRA allow executives some flexibility in choosing strategic planning approaches that fit their situations.

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