Sandford Borins is Professor of Public Management in the Department of Management, University of Toronto-Scarborough, where he was the founding chair, serving in that capacity from 1991 to 2003. He also holds graduate appointments in the Rotman School of Management, School of Public Policy and Governance, and Political Science Department. He has been a visiting professor at the Harvard Kennedy School and the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California at Berkeley, and Scholar-in-Residence in the Ontario Cabinet Office. He is currently a research fellow at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Harvard Kennedy School.
He is the author of numerous articles as well as eleven books. The eleven books include Negotiating Business Narratives: Fables from the Information Technology, Automobile Manufacturing, and Financial Trading Industries, with Beth Herst (Palgrave Pivot, 2018), The Persistence of Innovation in Government (Brookings, 2014), Governing Fables: Learning from Public Sector Narratives (Information Age Publishing, 2011), Innovations in Government: Research, Recognition, and Replication (Brookings, 2008), Digital State at the Leading Edge (University of Toronto Press, 2007), “If you build it . . . ” Business, Government, and Ontario’s Electronic Toll Highway, co-authored with Chandran Mylvaganam (University of Toronto Centre for Public Management, 2004), Political Management in Canada, co-authored with Hon. Allan Blakeney, former premier of Saskatchewan (University of Toronto Press, 1998), Innovating with Integrity: How Local Heroes are Transforming American Government (Georgetown University Press, 1998), and The Language of the Skies: The Bilingual Air Traffic Control Conflict in Canada (McGill-Queens University Press, 1983). The Language of the Skies was recognized as one of the twenty best books in English supported by the Social Science Federation of Canada between 1940 and 1990.
Professor Borins has had a wide range of professional experience. He is a frequent conference speaker on public sector innovation and on narrative. He was a member of the board of directors of the Ontario Transportation Capital Corporation, responsible for developing Ontario’s Highway 407. He was the President of the Canadian Association of Programs in Public Administration from 2003 to 2007.
He did his undergraduate studies at Harvard, where he graduated magna cum laude, was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and received a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship. He then took a Master in Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government, and received his Ph.D. in Economics at Harvard.