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Alan Ehrenhalt

Alan Ehrenhalt

Contributing Editor

Alan Ehrenhalt served for 19 years as executive editor of Governing Magazine, and is currently one of its contributing editors. He has been a frequent contributor to The New York Times Book Review and op-ed page, the Washington Post Book World, New Republic and The Wall Street Journal. He is the author of four books: The United States of Ambition, The Lost City, Democracy in the Mirror, and The Great Inversion. He was also the creator and editor of the first four editions of Politics in America, a biennial reference book profiling all 535 members of Congress. Alan Ehrenhalt is a 1968 graduate of Brandeis University and holds an MS in journalism from Columbia. He was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard from 1977-1978; a Visiting Scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1987-1988; a Regents’ Lecturer at UCLA in 2006; an adjunct faculty member at the Jepson School of Leadership Studies, at the University of Richmond, from 2004 through 2008; and an adjunct faculty member at the University of Maryland Graduate School of Public Policy in 2009. In 2000 he received the American Political Science Association’s McWilliams award for distinguished contributions to the field of political science by a journalist. He is married, has two daughters, and lives in Arlington, Virginia.

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Absurd occupational licensing requirements are costly for the economy and harmful to the workforce, but we don't seem to be able to do much about them.
Seattle’s mayor wants to revive the city center by opening much of it to businesses that have long been forbidden. It’s a move toward more lenient zoning that has been gathering steam in other places.
There’s a movement toward cracking down again on minor offenses. It raises larger questions about what transgressions we should be punishing — and why we should.
Many center-city downtowns continue to struggle, but Americans, especially younger adults, still want walkability.
Their inventor wanted them to be centers of social life. They never really achieved that goal, but the ones that remain are more than just places to spend money.
Modular houses assembled from factory-built components are cheaper to build and the governor of Colorado is all in on them. They won't solve the housing problem but can be part of the solution.
Just not many that pay much.
It’s been a topic for decades. Some blame cars. Some blame uninviting public spaces. Maybe there are some small things communities could do that would help.
No longer isolated by a freeway, San Francisco’s Ferry Building doesn’t have the worldwide fame of the Eiffel Tower or Big Ben. But a new book argues that it has shaped both its own city and the built environment in many others.
Chicago is pondering city-owned grocery stores in its poor neighborhoods. It might be a worthwhile experiment.