MPP and PhD students and faculty engage in interdisciplinary research teams that include scientists from a full range of relevant disciplines on pressing policy issues to address the most pressing concerns of the 21st century such as water conflict in a globalized economy, educational reform in the face of shrinking public resources, and the implementation of increasingly contentious technologies such as genetically modified crops, nanotechnology, sustainable rural communities, and renewable energy. 

There are many research opportunities for MPP and PhD students at OSU through our Sun Grant, Sea GrantLand Grant and Space Grant programs and through various research institutes including the Institute for Natural Resources, the Institute for Water and Watersheds, the Rural Studies Program, the Hatfield Marine Science Center, the Pacific Marine Energy Center, and many other opportunities. Here are some examples of recent MPP and Executive MPP Capstone Research Projects.

Faculty Coauthored and Student Publications (Bold=MPP or PhD student):

Cassandra Inman and Michael Jones (2022) "Thinking Outside the Lunchbox: A Narrative Policy Framework Analysis of School Lunch Policies," World Food Policy, pp. 1-23.

Tjorven Sievers, Rebecca Warner (in press) "(In-) Stability of Gender Attitudes in Times of Family Policy Change – A Latent Class Analysis of Germany, Austria, and Sweden," Social Politics: International Studies in Gender, State & Society.

Rafi Najam and Alison Johnston (2022) "Information provision and preferences toward tuition introduction in public universities: evidence from a survey experiment in Afghanistan," Education Economics. 

Tjorven Sievers (2022) Enabled but not transformed – narratives on parental involvement among first-time mothers and fathers in Germany in the context of parental leave policy design, Community, Work & Family, DOI: 10.1080/13668803.2022.2099248

Muhammad Usman Amin Siddiqi, Brent S. Steel, and Erika Allen Wolters, "Situational and Tans-situational Correlates of Public Energy Literacy," Current Alternative Energy 2(2022). [Online and Print Article]

Erika Allen Wolters, Brent S. Steel, Muhammad Usman Amin Siddiqi, and Melissa Symmes, "Public Water Knowledge and Policy Preferences in the American West," International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 19(2022). [Online Article] 

Eirka Allen Wolters, Brent S. Steel, Sydney Anderson, and Heather Moline, "The Future of Food: Understanding Public Preferences for the Management of Agricultural Resources," International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18(2021). [Online Areticle]

Adrian Laufer and Michael D. Jones (2021). "Who Pays for Marine Conservation?: Processes and Narratives that Influences Marine Funding," Ocean and Coastal Management, 203. [Online Article]

Warda Ajaz and David Bernell (2021). “Microgrids and the transition toward decentralized energy systems in the United States: A Multi-Level Perspective,” Energy Policy, 149. [Online Article] 

Boudet, H. S., L. Giordono, C. Zanocco, H. Satein and H. Whitley (2020). Event attribution and partisanship shape local discussion of climate change after extreme weather.  Nature Climate Change 10: 69–76. [Online Article]

Tjorven Sievers (2020). Fieldwork Interrupted: Considering Implications of the COVID-19 Pandemic for Qualitative Family Policy Research. ADVANCE Journal, 2(2)

Tjorven Sievers, Michael Jones (2020) Can power be made an empirically viable concept in policy process theory? Exploring the power potential of the Narrative Policy Framework. International Review of Public Policy, 2(1), 90–114.

Stelmach, G., C. Zanocco, J. Flora, R. Rajagopal and H. S. Boudet (2020). Exploring household energy rules and activities during peak demand to better determine potential responsiveness to time-of-use pricing.  Energy Policy 144: 111608. [Online Article]

Giordono, L., A. Gard-Murray and H. S. Boudet (2020). Local Adaptation Policy Responses to Extreme Weather Events.  Policy Science 53: 609–636. [Online Article]

Spalding, A. K., & de Ycaza, R. (2020). Navigating Shifting Regimes of Ocean Governance: From UNCLOS to Sustainable Development Goal 14. Environment and Society, 11(1), 5-26.

Zehra Gardezi, Brent S. Steel, and Angela Lavado (2020). “The Impact of Efficacy, Values and Knowledge on Public Preferences Concerning Food-Energy-Environment Policy Tradeoffs,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17. [Online Article] 

Alexandra Buylova, Brent S. Steel and Christopher A. Simon (2020). “Public Perceptions of Energy Scarcity and Support for New Energy Technologies: A Western U.S. Case Study,”  Energies. [Online Article]  

Sievers, T., & Jones, M. D. (2020). Can power be made an empirically viable concept in policy process theory? Exploring the power potential of the Narrative Policy Framework. International Review of Public Policy, 2(1), 90–114.

Anna Karmazina and Brent S. Steel (2019). “Public Familiarity with Geothermal Energy on the North American West Coast,” Journal of Energy and Power Technology, 20. [Online Article] 

Zanocco, C., H. S. Boudet, R. Nilson and J. Flora (2019). Personal harm and support for climate change mitigation policies: Evidence from 10 U.S. communities impacted by extreme weather. Global Environmental Change 59: 101984. 

Zanocco, C., H. S. Boudet, C. E. Clarke and P. Howe. (2019). Spatial discontinuities in support for hydraulic fracturing: searching for a “Goldilocks Zone.” Society & Natural Resources 32(9): 1065-1072. 

Clarke, C. E., D. Bugden, D. T. N. Evensen, R. C. Stedman, H. S. Boudet and J. B. Jacquet (2019). Communicating about climate change, natural gas development, and ‘fracking’. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Climate Science, Encyclopedia of Climate Communication. Ed. M. Nisbet, S. S. Ho, E. Markowitz, S. O’Neill, M. S. Schafer and J. Thaker. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. 

Mauriello, M., C. Zanocco, G. Stelmach, J. Flora, H. S. Boudet and R. Rajagopal (2019). An Energy Lifestyles Program for Tweens: A Pilot Study. CHI 2019 

Tran, T., C. L. Taylor, H. S. Boudet, K. Baker and H. Peterson (2019). Using concepts from the study of social movements to understand community response to liquefied natural gas development in Clatsop County, Oregon. Case Studies in the Environment. 

Boudet, H. S., L. Giordono, C. Zanocco, H. Satein and H. Whitley (2019). Event attribution and partisanship shape local discussion of climate change after extreme weather. Nature Climate Change. 

Boudet, H. S., S. Shepard, C. Zanocco, L. A. Cramer and B. Tilt (2018). Community climate change beliefs, awareness and actions in the wake of the September 2013 flooding in Boulder County, Colorado. Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences 8(3): 312-325. 

Boudet, H. S., C. Zanocco, C. E. Clarke and P. Howe (2018). The effect of geographic proximity to unconventional oil and gas development on public support for hydraulic fracturing. Risk Analysis 149(3-4): 349-365. 

Giordono, L. S., H. S. Boudet, A. Karmazina, C. L. Taylor and B. Steel (2018). Opposition “overblown”? Community response to wind energy siting in the Western United States. Energy Research & Social Science 43: 119-131. 

Pierce, J. J., H. S. Boudet, C. Zanocco and M. Hillyard (2018). Analyzing the factors that influence U.S. public support for exporting natural gas. Energy Policy 120: 666-674. 

Brett Burkhardt, Scott Akins, Jon Sassaman, Scott Jackson, Ken Elwer, Charles Lanfear, Mariana Amorim and Katelyn Stevens (2017). “University Researcher and Law Enforcement Collaboration: Results and Lessons from a Study of Justice-Involved Mentally Ill Individuals in Benton County, Oregon.” International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, 61(5):508-525. 

Erika Allen Wolters, Brent S. Steel, Daniel Weston and Mark Brunson (2017). “Determinants of Residential Firewise Behaviors in Central Oregon,” Social Science Journal 54: 168-178 

Precious, Cheryl, Keith Baker, and Mark Edwards (2017). “Coping with Compassion: Role Transformation among Oregon Food Pantry Directors.” Voluntas 28(5):2011-2031. 

Tanner, A. and Johnston, AL. (2017). “The Impact of Rural Electric Access on Deforestation Rates”, World Development. 94(June): 174-185. 

Hauser, D. and Johnston, AL (2016) “Public Costs, Relative Subsidies, and Repayment Burdens of Federal U.S. Student Loan Plans: Lessons for Reform” Higher Education Policy. 29: 89-107. 

Claire Clark and Sally Gallagher (2016).The Influence of State Maternity Leave Policies on U.S. Mothers’ Employment. Community, Work & Family, 19 (4). [Online Article] 

Mark Edwards, Colleen Heflin, Peter Mueser, Suzanne Porter & Bruce Weber (2016). “The Great Recession and SNAP Caseloads: A Tale of Two States.” Journal of Poverty, 20:3, 261-277, DOI: 10.1080/10875549.2015.1094770 

Scott Akins, Brett Burkhardt, and Charles Lanfear (2016). “Law Enforcement Response to “Frequent Fliers”: An Examination of High-Frequency Contacts between Police and Justice-Involved Persons with Mental Illness.” Criminal Justice Policy Review 27(1):1-18. 

Clarke, C. E., D. Bugden, P. S. Hart, R. C. Stedman, J. B. Jacquet, D. T. N. Evensen and H. S. Boudet (2016). How geographic distance and political ideology interact to influence public perception of unconventional oil/natural gas development. Energy Policy 97: 301-309. 

Boudet, H. S., D. Bugden, C. Zanocco and E. Maibach (2016). The effect of industry activity on public support for “fracking”. Environmental Politics 25(4): 593-612.

Mark Henkels, Brent S. Steel and Yohanna Gultom (2016). “Oregon 2015-17: A Politically Blue State with Economically Red Problems,” California Journal of Politics and Policy 9: 1-14. 

Erika Allen Wolters, Brent S. Steel, Denise Lach and Daniel Kloepfer (2016). “What is the Best Available Science: A Comparison of Marine Scientists, Managers and Interest Groups,” Ocean and Coastal Management. 122: 95-122. 

Boudet, H. S., C. Clarke, D. Bugden, E. Maibach, C. Roser-Renouf and A. Leiserowitz (2014). “Fracking” controversy and communication: Using national survey data to understand public perceptions of hydraulic fracturing. Energy Policy 65: 57-67.

Porter, Suzanne and Mark Edwards (2014). “Household and Economic Factors Associated with Geographic and School Mobility Among Low-Income Children.” Journal of Children and Poverty 20(2):111-130. 

Johnston AL, Hancké, R, and Pant, S. (2014). “Comparative Institutional Advantage in Europe’s Sovereign Debt Crisis”. Comparative Political Studies. 47(13) 1771-1800.

Torgerson, Melissa and Mark Evan Edwards (2013). “Demographic Determinants of Perceived Barriers to Community Involvement: Examining Rural/Urban Differences.” Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly 42(2):369 – 388. 

Edwards, Mark Evan, Melissa Torgerson, and Jennifer Sattem (2009). “Paradoxes of Providing Rural Social Services: The Case of Homeless Youth.” Rural Sociology 74(3):330-355.

Brent S. Steel, Rebecca L. Warner and Alex Johnson (2008). Environmental NGOs and Science Policy: A Comparative Analysis of Bulgaria and the U.S., Journal of Environmental Systems 31: 141-157. 

Brent S. Steel, Court Smith, Laura Opsommer, Sara Curiel and Ryan-Warner-Steel (2005). “Public Ocean Literacy in the United States,” Ocean and Coastal Management 48: 97-114.

Scott Akins, Brett Burkhardt and Charles Lanfear. 2016. “Law Enforcement Response to Persons with Mental Illness: Challenges and Recommendations for Policy.” London School of Economics American Politics and Policy Blog. 

Stansfield, Richard, Scott Akins, Rubén Rumbaut and Roger Hammer. 2013. “Assessing the effects of recent immigration on serious property crime in Austin, Texas.” Sociological Perspectives 56:647-672. 

Akins, Scott, Charles Lanfear, Sarah Cline and Clay Mosher. 2013. “Patterns and Correlates of Adult American Indian Substance Use.” Journal of Drug Issues 43: 497-516. 

Lanfear, Charles, Scott Akins and Clay Mosher. 2013. “Examining the Relationship of Substance Use and Sexual Orientation.” Deviant Behavior 34: 586-597. 

Akins, Scott, Rubén Rumbaut and Richard Stansfield. 2009. “Immigration, Economic Disadvantage and Homicide: An analysis of communities in Austin, Texas.” Homicide Studies 13: 307-314.

Gray, Daniel, and David Bernell, (2020), “Tree-hugging Utilities? The Politics of Phasing Out Coal and the Unusual Alliance that Passed Oregon's Clean Energy Transition Law,” Energy Research and Social Science, Volume 59. 

Gunther, Stephen, and David Bernell, (2019), “Challenging the System: The Role of Community Choice Aggregation in California’s Transition to a Renewable Energy Future,” The Electricity Journal, 32(10). 

Amin, Mohsin, and David Bernell, (2018), “Power Sector Reform in Afghanistan: Barriers to Achieving Universal Access to Electricity,” Energy Policy, Volume 123, December, pp. 72-82. 

Wang, Hua, and David Bernell, (2013), “Environmental Disclosure in China: An Examination of the Green Securities Policy,” Journal of Environment and Development, December, Vol. 22 (4).

Jacobs, D.B. and L.A. Cramer. 2020. Social capital in forested communities: Adapting to climate change and increasing wildfire risks in rural communities in central Oregon. Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences [Appearing online January 3, 2020, forthcoming Volume XX.] 

Buylova, A., C. Chen, L.A. Cramer, H. Wang, and D. Cox. 2020. Household risk perceptions and evacuation intentions in earthquake and tsunami in a Cascadia Subduction Zone. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction [Appearing online December 15, 2019, forthcoming Volume 44, April 2020.]

Cramer, L.A., Flathers, C., Caracciolo, D., Russell, S. and F. Conway, F. 2018. Graying of the fleet: Perceived impacts on community resilience. Marine Policy 96 (October):27-35. 

Utami, A., Cramer, L.A. and N. Rosenberger. 2018. Staple food diversification versus rice subsidy: Developing climate change resilience in rural Indonesia. Human Ecology 77(4):359-370. 

Shephard, S., Boudet, H., Zanocco, C., Cramer, L.A. and B. Tilt. 2018. Community climate change beliefs, awareness, and actions in the wake of the September 2013 flooding in Boulder County. Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences 1-14. 

Jacobs, D.B. and L.A. Cramer. 2017. Applying social network analysis to fire-prone landscapes: implications for community resilience. Ecology and Society 22(1): 52.

Burkhardt, Brett C., Scott Akins, Jon Sassaman, Scott Jackson, Ken Elwer, Charles Lanfear, Mariana Amorim, and Katelyn Stevens. 2017. “University Researcher and Law Enforcement Collaboration: Lessons from a Study of Justice-Involved Persons with Suspected Mental Illness.” International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, 61(5): 508-525. 

Burkhardt, Brett C. and Alisha Jones. 2016. “Judicial Intervention into Prisons: Comparing Private and Public Prisons from 1990 to 2005.” Justice System Journal, 37(1): 39-52. 

Akins, Scott, Brett C. Burkhardt, and Charles Lanfear. 2016. “Law Enforcement Response to ‘Frequent Fliers’: An Examination of High-Frequency Contacts between Police and Justice-Involved Persons with Mental Illness.” Criminal Justice Policy Review, 27(1): 97-114.

Leanne Giordono and Todd Pugatch, Non-tuition Costs, School Access and Student Performance: Evidence from the Gambia Journal of African Economies, Volume 26, Issue 2, March 2017, Pages 140–168,

Thompson, P. N. and St. John, M., “The Effects of Performance Audits on School District Financial Behavior,” Public Finance Review, 47(6), 1042-1075. 2. 

Khan, M. S., Thompson, P. N., & Tremblay, V. (2019). “Marijuana Tax Incidence, Stockpiling, and Cross Border Substitution,” International Tax and Public Finance, 3. 

Thompson, P. N. & Whitley, J. (2017) “The Effect of School District and Municipal Government Financial Health Information on Local Tax Election Outcomes: Evidence from Fiscal Stress Labels in Ohio,” Public Choice, 170(3), 265-288.

Coauthored Book Chapters

Alexandra Buylova, Erika Allen Wolters and Brent S. Steel (forthcoming). “Public Climate Change Beliefs and Support for Wave Energy in the Pacific Coast Collaborative: The Case of British Columbia and the U.S. Pacific Coast States,” N. Columbus ed., British Columbia: Environmental, Political and Social Issues (Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers). 

Leanne Giordono, Brent S. Steel and Claire McMorris (forthcoming) “State Economic Inequality and Incivility,” Chapter 7 in N.P. Lovrich, F. Benjamin, W. Schreckhise, and J.C. Pierce, eds., Outside Looking In: Lobbyists’ Views on Civil Discourse in U.S. State Legislatures. Pullman, WA: Washington State University Press.

Claire McMorris, Brent S. Steel and Leanne Giordono (forthcoming). “The Rural-Urban Divide and Political Incivility in State Legislatures,” Chapter 8 in N.P. Lovrich, F. Benjamin, W. Schreckhise, and J.C. Pierce, eds., Outside Looking In: Lobbyists’ Views on Civil Discourse in U.S. State Legislatures. Pullman, WA: Washington State University Press.

Suman Pant, Casey Taylor and Brent S. Steel (2020). “Policy Process Theory for Rural Policy,” in M. Vittuari, J. Devlin, M. Pagani, J.L. Stallmann, and T.G. Johnson (eds), Handbook of International Comparative Rural Policy. Routledge Press (2020). Leanne Giordono and Mark Edwards (2018). Chapter 15 “Oregon Social Policy: The Safety Net,” in Clucas, Richard, Mark Henkels, Priscilla Southwell, Edward P. Weber (eds.). Governing Oregon: Continuity and Change.

Weber, E., D. Bernell, H. S. Boudet and P. Fernandez (2019). Energy policy: Fracking, coal and the water-energy nexus. Environmental Policy: New Directions for the Twenty-First Century, 10th Edition. Ed. N.J. Vig and M.E. Kraft. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage/CQ Press. 

Alexandra Buylova, Rebecca L. Warner, and Brent S. Steel (2018). “The Oregon Context,” pp. 19-38 in E. Weber, P. Southwell, R. Clucas and M. Henkels (eds.) Oregon State and Local Politics: Innovation and Change, Oregon State University Press (2018). 

Skolovska, I., E. Wolters and B.S. Steel (2018). “When Science Does Not Have a Seat at the Vaccine Decision Making Table,” How and Why Political Ideology Interferes with Science Series, Understanding Controversy and Society. Brighton, MI: ABC-CLIO (2018).

Bernell, David, Warda Ajaz, and Daniel Gray (2018). “Oregon Energy Policy,” in Clucas, Henkels, Soutwell and Weber, eds., Governing Oregon: Continuity and Change, Oregon State University Press.

Boudet, H. S., T. Trang and B. Gaustad (2017). The long shadow of unconventional hydrocarbon development: Contentious politics in liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility siting in Oregon. Fractured Communities: Risks, Impact, and Protest Against Hydraulic Fracking in U.S. Shale Regions. Ed. A. E. Ladd. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press. 

Boudet, H. S. and J. Grandolfo (2016). Strategic environmental assessment and public participation in infrastructure siting: Klickitat County, Washington’s wind energy overlay zone. The Governance of Infrastructure. Ed. K. Wegrich, G. Kostka and G. Hammerschmid. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Brent S. Steel (ed.), Science and Politics: An A to Z Guide to Issues and Controversies (Sage/CQ Press, 2014) student authored chapters:  

  • Dylan Bugden, “Animals in Scientific Research” and “PCBs” 
  • Lawrence Ruiz, “Big Science” and HIV/AIDS
  • Ashley Parker, “Birth Control” 
  • Jeremiah Osborne-Gowey, “BP Oil Spill” and “Wildlife Management” 
  • Andrew Spaeth, “Deforestation and Forest Degradation” and “Public Funding” 
  • Rebecca Arce, “Drug Trials” and “Whistleblower Protection”
  • Joseph O. Clark, “Educational Certification” 
  • Jarrod Olson, “Food Safety” • Snehalatha Gantla, “Genetic Testing” 
  • Daniel Hauser, “H1N1 Pandemic” and “Influenza” 
  • Elise Korejwa, “Intellectual Property” 
  • Jeremy Eckstein, “Keystone XL Pipeline” 
  • Tamas Golya, “Stem Cell Research” Bren