At the MGMT Lab, we are using both experimental designs and field work to explore ways for measuring and managing sustainability performance. Part of this challenge of urban sustainability is that we only dimly understand public perceptions of the appropriate role of local governments in pursuing these policy objectives. To better understand citizen perceptions, we are exploring how public managers frame performance information to communicate successes and failures in a way which overcomes politicization of the topic. One of the goals of this ongoing research program is to help managers make evidence-based decisions as they try to improve the sustainability of services and resources.
Measuring and Managing Sustainability Performance
'Positivity and Negativity Dominance in Citizen Assessments of Intergovernmental Sustainability Performance.' A. Deslatte. - Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 2020.
'Elucidating the Linkages Between Entrepreneurial Orientation and Local Government Sustainability Performance.' A. Deslatte, W. Swann. - The American Review of Public Administration, 2019.
'Citizen Assessments of Local Government Sustainability Performance: A Bayesian Approach,' A. Deslatte - Journal of Behavioral Public Administration, 2019.
Citizens are increasingly critical information-processors, and government performance information has become ubiquitous to the tenants of democratic anchorage and support for public programs. Partisan motivated reasoning can lead to inaccurate or biased assessments of both the merit of specific policies and governmental performance. This article presents a case for the use of Bayesian inference for experimental work on information-processing. It examines whether provision of performance information on local government implementation of federally initiated sustainability efforts ameliorates the partisan motivated reasoning of citizens. Contrary to expectations, the study finds evidence of attitude-strengthening in the face of disconfirming performance as well as suggesting partisan cues may help citizens calibrate their evaluations.
'Handing over the Keys: Nonprofit Economic Development Corporations and Their Implications for Accountability and Inclusion,' A. Deslatte, A. Schatteman, E. Stokan - Public Performance & Management Review, 2018.
Public organizations have explored service-delivery with nonprofit organizations to help alleviate the strain on their long-term fiscal sustainability. This interdependence has ramifications for fairness and responsiveness in service-delivery that are poorly understood. This study utilizes surveys of U.S. cities at multiple time periods to examine the comparative use of nonprofit economic development corporations and their performance on smart-growth and social equity policy activities. This study first explores the roles played by the two most common types of local nonprofit organizations—nonprofit Local Development Corporations (LDCs) and Community-Based Development Organizations (CBDOs)—in use of performance information and accountability mechanisms. Use of LDCs is also negatively associated with land use policies intended to advance social inclusion.