Former Gov. Tommy Thompson says the Wisconsin Idea was “fundamental to how I would lead and govern,” both in Wisconsin and as U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. In the journal Public Administration Review, Thompson hails partnerships between government officials and university scholars.
The Wisconsin Idea informs how best to identify and frame a public challenge or opportunity. It expects leaders to introduce their solutions and proposals that fix or improve. It encourages leaders to solicit views from all quarters. It uplifts the quality and tone of healthy debate, so vital to our republican democracy. And, it results in the best public policy. It is a powerful principle that relies on all citizens, educators, researchers, and policy makers to engage. And, it is critical to the continued success of our state, our nation, and the society we maintain, build, and pass on.