Aaron Deslatte, Ph.D. Department of Public Administration Northern Illinois University
Across the metropolitan landscape, public managers are engaged in policy design, implementation and performance evaluation. Often behind the scenes, they influence service-levels and play a role in confronting negative 'spillovers' of pollution and infrastructure decline in urban areas.
I work as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Public Administration within the School of Public and Global Affairs at Northern Illinois University. My research explores how local government managers sustainably manage development, protect natural resources and promote socially equitable service-delivery. This requires focusing on the decision-making by local government administrators, the environments they work within, and how their decisions are steered by the fragmented structure of political institutions. One lens for oberving managerial influence is through land-use and the efforts by local governments and regional networks to use “smart growth” policy tools to address problems associated with sprawl, including urban disinvestment, social inequality and pollution. Another project along these lines explores the entrepreneurial orientation of city managers in the Chicago metropolitan area. Social scientists have a lot to offer physical scientists studying the environmental impacts of human development, and I try to engage in inter-disciplinary work. I am a faculty affiliate with the Institute for the Study of the Environment, Sustainability and Energy at NIU. I have worked on a team studying transitions in water management in three U.S. cities, funded by the University of Maryland's National Center for Socio-Environmental Synthesis (SESYNC). I am also part of a Research Collaboration Network on sustainable cities, examining how municipal rules embedded in charters influence policy choices and the effectiveness of those policies.
I have studied Bayesian inference and network analysis at the University of Michigan’s Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR). My research has appeared in the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Urban Affairs Review, the Journal of Urban Affairs, Policy Studies Journal, and other outlets. I have presented papers at conferences for the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM), the American Political Science Association (APSA), the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA), and the Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA), among other conferences and invited workshops,
Prior to changing careers, I worked as a government reporter for 15 years. During that time, I covered city councils, school boards, state legislatures and state and national political campaigns in Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas and Florida for news organizations including The Kansas City Star, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Gannett News Service and the Orlando Sentinel.
At FSU, I was part of a Local Governance Research Lab which investigates questions about why cities and counties collaborate and compete in arenas ranging from energy use to development, environmental resource management and land-use. Research examining the institutional influences on local government sustainability initiatives can be found at the FSU Local Governance Research Lab.Here are some of the collective works examining local government land use and political markets.
Here are the courses I regulary teach:
PSPA 600 - Scope and Dynamics of Public Administration PSPA 605 _ Organizational Theory and Behavior PSPA 630 – Local and Metropolitan Government PSPA 631 – Urban Planning and Zoning PSPA 632 - Local Government Administration