Citizens first. Stewards concurrently.
As stewards of the public fisc, and citizens in their own rights, public procurement professionals straddle both the public and private spheres of civil society in a way unmatched by any other group of people in modern civilization.
Often under-resourced and over-obligated, they are tasked with exercising their professional discretion to achieve the lowest price – or, increasingly, "best value" – for the goods, services, and infrastructure projects required to fulfill their missions, while also advancing the public policy goals of their political officials through the political power of public procurement.
To exercise such discretion in an effective, efficient, and economic manner, public procurement professionals must understand public procurement as a complex system. A complex system best defined as the governance, methods, and processes utilized by a governmental institution to identify, secure, and monitor the external provision of the goods, services, and infrastructure projects necessary to fulfill its publicly-stated mission in a manner consistent with its publicly-held values.
As such, we believe public procurement professionals must call upon an interdisciplinary body of knowledge based on the established fields of business, law, political science, and public administration to inform its practice.