Beyond Policy Diffusion: Spatial Econometric Models of Public Administration

Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Forthcoming. DOI: doi.org/10.1093/jopart/muy050.

American University School of Public Affairs Research Paper No. 3354114

51 Pages Posted: 9 Apr 2019

See all articles by Scott Cook

Scott Cook

Texas A&M University

Seung-Ho An

University of Arizona - School of Government and Public Policy

Nathan Favero

American University - School of Public Affairs

Date Written: 2018

Abstract

Interdependence in the decision making or behaviors of various organizations and administrators is often neglected in the study of public administration. Failing to account for such interdependence risks an incomplete understanding of the choices made by these actors and agencies. As such, we show how researchers analyzing cross-sectional or time-series-cross-sectional (TSCS) data can utilize spatial econometric methods to improve inference on existing questions, and, more interestingly, engage a new set of theoretical questions. Specifically, we articulate several general mechanisms for spatial dependence that are likely to appear in research on public administration (isomorphism, competition, benchmarking, and common exposure). We then demonstrate how these mechanisms can be tested using spatial econometric models in two applications: first, a cross-sectional study of district-level bilingual education spending and, second, a TSCS analysis on state-level health care administration. In our presentation, we also briefly discuss many of the practical challenges confronted in estimating spatial models (e.g., weights specification, model selection, effects calculation) and offer some guidance on each.

Suggested Citation

Cook, Scott and An, Seung-Ho and Favero, Nathan, Beyond Policy Diffusion: Spatial Econometric Models of Public Administration (2018). Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Forthcoming. DOI: doi.org/10.1093/jopart/muy050. ; American University School of Public Affairs Research Paper No. 3354114. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3354114 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3354114

Scott Cook (Contact Author)

Texas A&M University ( email )

Langford Building A
798 Ross St.
College Station, TX 77843-3137
United States

Seung-Ho An

University of Arizona - School of Government and Public Policy

315 Social Science Building
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States

Nathan Favero

American University - School of Public Affairs ( email )

Washington, DC 20016
United States

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