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Alan Ehrenhalt

Alan Ehrenhalt

Senior 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.

He can be reached at ehrenhalt@yahoo.com.

Over the past couple of decades, coffeehouses became centers of sociability and community life. In the wake of the virus, many of them are switching to a grab-and-go model. Can anything replace these vital “third places”?
People love to be close to a lake, a river or an ocean, and waterfronts can be a major urban achievement. Why have so many cities done a poor job of cultivating this amenity?
You can make the case that it is, and not just in size. Every city is distinctive in some way, but nothing comes close to New York in the breadth and depth of its demographics, neighborhoods and culture.
We’ve tried several approaches, and all have their strengths and weaknesses. But one relic of the Progressive Era is on the way out.
The way we deal with it says a lot about our national and local cultures. Reforming it may not be so much about formal government action as about humans’ willingness to change their habits.
They’re happening in gentrifying neighborhoods, creating a flashpoint of ethnic and racial conflict. Some cities are trying to deal with the problem, but there are no easy solutions.
A term that once referred only to housing now encompasses everything from politics to economic life to the disappearance of community. But the center is still out there somewhere.
Bill Leighty served Virginia in a variety of ways, including as chief of staff to two governors. He knew the rules of management — and he knew when to stretch or break them.
As Prince of Wales, Charles had a lot to say about architecture and planning. But there are things that princes can do that monarchs might not be able to.
They have a long history, and they have been our "public living room." Some cities and towns that have lost their central gathering places are trying to re-create them.