David’s research interests include the intersection of policy process, public management, and governance theories. He applies a variety of methodological approaches including quantitative, qualitative, and digital methods. David’s primary research, conducted under the advisement of Chris Weible, involves analysis of U.S. organic policy design and resulting impacts and outputs (NSF grant no. 1124541). His dissertation research looks more specifically at the characteristics and behaviors of the governmental, nonprofit, and private regulatory agents responsible for administering the quasi-voluntary National Organic Program. A related paper, presented at the Midwest Political Science Association 2014 annual meeting, is available here. A second paper, presented at the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management 2014 annual meeting, is available here.
Additional research efforts include:
The development of policy document coding and analysis procedures based on methods and concepts from the Institutional Analysis and Development framework. A related study poster can be found here. Resulting studies include a Public Administration article in which the method is applied to investigate similarities and divergences between an administrative rule and the preceding legislative law (available here), an Urban Affairs Review article which the method is applied to explore institutional diversity in city charters (available here), a Policy Sciences article in which the method is applied to document policy change (available here), and a forthcoming article in the Journal of Theoretical Politics.
Exploration of semi-automated digital methods as an approach to public policy and management research. This includes analysis of online ‘issue networks’ by mapping organizational websites and the hyperlinks that connect them, and automated website content analysis. A resulting sample paper can be found here.
David’s MPA capstone applied common pool resource theory to assess a co-management arrangement of a popular rock climbing destination in Utah. A project description can be found here, a related study poster is available here, and the resulting article, published in the Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning can be found here. A bibliography entry on common pool resources literature, co-authored by David and Tanya Hiekkila, is available here.