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While various descriptive and prescriptive citizen participation models suggest ways to improve citizen participation, none has been subjected to large-scale empirical tests. This article develops and tests an organizational theory model that explores the conditions under which citizen involvement as a general strategy can improve administrative decision making. The new model focuses on organizational variables that are more directly subject to managerial influence, such as political support, leadership, red tape, and hierarchical authority, as well as variables related to participant competence and representativeness. Hypotheses are tested with data collected from a national survey of local government managers. The results suggest that public management matters for citizen participation. The conclusion calls for integrating quantitative designs with normative and qualitative citizen participation research.