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John C. Morris

John C. Morris


Political Science

John C. Morris

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8030-B Haley Center

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PhD, Auburn University

MA, Auburn University

BA, Auburn University

About Me

John C. Morris is a professor in the Department of Political Science at Auburn University. He has been a member of the faculty at Auburn since 2019. Prior to that time, Dr. Morris served as a faculty member at Old Dominion University from 2002-2019, and at Mississippi State University from 1994-2002. He received his Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration from Auburn University in 1994. He has also served as Research Coordinator at the Center for Governmental Services at Auburn University, and as a Research Associate with Policy Studies Associates, Inc., in Washington, DC.

Dr. Morris teaches courses in collaboration, public policy, organization theory, privatization, and policy evaluation in both the Master of Public Administration program and PhD in Public Administration and Public Policy programs. He has won numerous teaching awards over the course of his career. He also serves on the editorial boards of two journals, has served on the program committee for three national conferences, and is a member of several professional organizations and honoraries.

His research interests include collaboration, public-private partnerships, water policy, federalism, and organization theory. He has published in journals such as Public Administration ReviewPolicy Studies Journal, the Journal of Politics, the American Review of Public Administration, Publius, VoluntasPolitics and PolicyState and Local Government Review, and Environmental Politics, among others. To date he has published twelve books, over 120 scholarly articles and book chapters, and delivered more than one hundred conference papers. Dr. Morris currently has two book manuscripts in various stages of development, as well as several journal manuscripts.

Research Interests

collaboration, public-private partnerships, water policy, federalism, organization theory


Recent Books

  • Clean Water Policy and State Choice: Promise and Performance in the Water Quality Act. New York:  Cambridge University Press (2022). ISBN 978-1-108-83912-9.
  • The Effects of Technology and Institutions on E-Participation: A Cross-National Analysis. New York: Routledge Press (2022). With Pragati Rawat. ISBN 978-0-367-75549-2.
  • Policy Making and Southern Distinctiveness.  New York:  Routledge Press (2022).  With Martin K. Mayer, Robert C. Kenter, and R. Bruce Anderson. ISBN 978-0-367-67733-6.
  • Multiorganizational Arrangements for Watershed Protection: Working Better Together.  New York: Routledge (2021). With Madeleine McNamara. ISBN 978-0-367-48641-9.
  • Organizational Motivation for Collaboration: Theory and Evidence.  Lanham, MD: Lexington Press (2019).  With Luisa Diaz-Kope. ISBN 978-1-49857852-3.
  • State Politics and the Affordable Care Act: Choices and Decisions.  New York: Routledge (2019).  With Martin Mayer, Robert Kenter, and Luisa Lucero.  ISBN 978-1-138-62409-2.
  • Advancing Collaboration Theory: Models, Typologies, and Evidence.  New York: Routledge (2016).  Co-edited with Katrina Miller-Stevens.  ISBN 978-1-138-81149-2.

Recent Refereed Journal Publications

  • “Why Collaborate? Exploring the Role of Organizational Motivations in Cross-Sector Watershed Collaboration.” Accepted for publication in Politics & Policy (forthcoming 2022). With Luisa M. Diaz-Kope.
  • “Expanding the Utility of Cross-Sectoral Collaboration in Policy Studies: Present and Future.” Policy Studies Yearbook, 12,1: 53-70 (2022). With Madeleine W. McNamara. doi: 10.18278/psy.12.1.3.
  • “Buying Innovation: An Examination of Public-Private Partnerships and the Decision Process for Contracting Out Innovation.” Accepted for publication in Politics & Policy, (forthcoming 2022). With Dolores Kuchina-Musina.
  • “Explaining State Differences in Firearm Legislation: A South/Non-South Analysis.” Social Science Quarterly, (forthcoming 2022).  With Robert C. Kenter and Martin K. Mayer.
  • “Contours of a National Infrastructure Policy for the New Millennium.” Public Works Management & Policy, 26,3: 200-209. (July 2021). With Ryan D. Williamson and A. Stanley Meiburg.
  • “Institutional Variation, Professionalization, and State Implementation Choices: An Examination of Investment in Water Quality Across the Fifty States.” American Review of Public Administration, 51,6: 436-448 (2021). With Ryan D. Williamson and Jonathan M. Fisk.
  • “Introduction to the Symposium: A Reexamination of Southern Distinctiveness Through the Lens of Firearm Policy.” Social Science Quarterly, (2021). With James T. LaPlant and Todd G. Shields. Available at
  • “Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic for Federalism and Infrastructure: A Call to Action.” Public Works Management & Policy, 26,1: 6-12 (January 2021). With Ryan D. Williamson.
  • “Toward the Roux: Explaining the Adoption of Inclusionary Practices in Local Government.” State & Local Government Review, 52,2: 89-102 (2021).  With Jonathan M. Fisk, Geoffrey Silvera, Xiaofeng Chen, Jan Hume, and Xi Chen.
  • “Reconsidering State Variation in Incarceration Rates.” Politics & Policy, 48,6: 1029-1061 (2020).  With Robert C. Kenter, Martin Mayer, and Jacob Newton.
  • “Seeking Patterns in Chaos: Transactional Federalism in the Trump Administration’s Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.” American Review of Public Administration, 50, 6-7: 512-518 (July 2020).  With Cynthia J. Bowling and Jonathan M. Fisk.
  • “Drivers and Differentiators: A Grounded Theory Study of Procurement in Public and Private Organizations.”  Journal of Public Procurement, 20,3: 265-285 (2020). With Dolores Kuchina-Musina and Joshua Steinfeld.
  • “The Global and the Local: Tracing the Trajectory of the Largest Biometric Identity Program.” Politics & Policy 47,6: 1066-1094 (2019). With Pragati Rawat.
  • “Exploring the Determinants of Collaboration Failure.”  International Journal of Public Administration, 43,1: 49-59 (2019). With Madeleine W. McNamara and Katrina Miller-Stevens.
  • “Climate Change and Infrastructure: The Coming Challenge.” Public Works Management & Policy, 24,1: 3-5 (Winter 2019).  With Richard G. Little.
  • “Building Resilience Through Collaboration Between Grassroots Citizen Groups and Governments: A Case Study.” Public Works Management & Policy, 24,1: 50-62 (Winter 2019).  With Madeleine W. McNamara and Amy Belcher.
  • “Deepwater or Troubled Water?  Principal-Agent Theory and the Coast Guard’s Deepwater Modernization Program.” International Journal of Public Administration. 42,4: 298-309 (2019).  With Mark D. Gordon and Joshua Steinfeld.
  • “State Implementation of the Affordable Care Act: Four Case Studies.” Politics & Policy, 46,2: 295-319 (2018).  With Martin Mayer, Robert C. Kenter, and Luisa Lucero.
  • “Assessing Value Differences Between Leaders of Two Social Venture Types: Benefit Corporations and Nonprofit Organizations.” Voluntas: The International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit, 29,5: 938-950 (2018). With Katrina Miller-Stevens, Steven Lanivich, and Jennifer A. Taylor.
  • “The Consent Order as Mandated Collaboration: The Case of the Hampton Roads Sanitation District.” Public Works Management & Policy, 23,2: 168-185 (2018). With Robert J. Martz and William McCarthy.
  • “’Grass’Roots in Texas: A Multiple Streams Approach to Understanding the Marijuana Movement’s Policy Impact.” World Affairs Journal, 180,1: 93-126 (March 2017).  With Katharine Neill-Harris.
  • “Planning for Water Infrastructure: Challenges and Opportunities.” Public Works Management & Policy, 22,1: 24-30 (Winter 2017).

Recent Book Chapters

  • “Accountability in the Context of Private Policy Implementation.”  In Eleanor Gaffney, ed., The Palgrave Handbook of the Public Servant, Palgrave, 2020.  With Lien Nguyen and Pragati Rawat.
  • “The Case of the ‘TWICing’ Time Bomb:  Privatization in the Transportation Worker Identification Card Program.”  In Yoram Shiftan and Gila Albert, eds., Handbook on Securing Transportation Systems (2015). John Wiley and Sons. With Benjamin R. Inman.