Arguing that too many studies focus on president's personalities, and not their relationships with advisers and the machinery of the office, Campbell describes the institutional development of the presidency and assesses the Carter and Regan administrations within a historical context. Interviews with senior members of the White House staff and other high-ranking officials add color and depth to his study.
"Managing the Presidency addresses one of the most central problems facing the Presidency today: How can the President effectively manage an increasingly large, 'institutional' Presidency? [Campbell's] scholarship is impressive, his topic timely and his discussion is worthy of considerable attention."
Unlike many studies of the American presidency which focus on character and style, Campbell's text analyzes both the personal and administrative roles of America's recent chief executives . . . Presidents Reagan and Carter are impartially scrutinized, and their records used to illustrate how the policy and personal behaviors of the chief executive assist in defining both the political agenda and the effectiveness of the institutional presidency.
[Campbell] has brought new data and important analytical perspectives to bear on the most pressing and enduring issues of the modern presidency. This book ought to be read carefully by all students of the presidency.