The Redheaded Stepchild and the Favorite Son Kennedy School Case: C16-92-1165.0
The Redheaded Stepchild and the Favorite Son: Resolving Disparities between Norfolk, Virginia’s Paramedic Rescue Service and Fire Department” (Kennedy School Case: C16-92-1165.0)
You are a consultant to Darlene Burcham, the assistant city manager of the city of Norfolk, Virginia. She is facing an extremely delicate and potentially explosive situation dealing with the competing demands of fire-fighters and paramedics. She asked you for your analysis and advice on this situation. Specifically, you should prepare and submit a clear, concise 2-page memo (single spaced) that addresses the following issues:
Who are the major stakeholders in this situation? What is the nature of their stake (i.e. what do they have to lose and gain)? What is the nature (its source and its strength) of each stakeholder’s power base? Be sure to include Ms. Burcham herself and other city officials in your analysis.
To what extent are external forces critical to the decision(s) that Darlene Burcham has to make? In what direction are those forces going with respect to this situation? How much influence are they likely to have and why?
Identify at least two possible courses of action that Ms. Burcham can take to deal with the complex politics of this situation and make a reasonable decision. What are the advantages of each possible course of action? The disadvantages?
Finally, what do you recommend that she should do next?
To facilitate your analysis, please be creative to come up with a visual way of mapping the political terrain as an appendix.