School of Public Affairs' rankings for public administration research rise to No. 2 in nation, No. 4 in world

July 1, 2020

Arizona State University’s School of Public Affairs has climbed to No. 2 in the U.S. and No. 4 globally for research on public administration, according to the 2020 Shanghai University Academic Rankings announced June 29.

ASU's national ranking places it in front of institutions such as Ohio State University, Harvard and the University of Southern California. headshot of Donald Siegel, Director of ASU's School of Public Affairs Donald Siegel, director of ASU's School of Public Affairs Download Full Image

In 2019, the school held the No. 3 and No. 7 positions, respectively.

“There is no doubt we have key thought leaders and gatekeepers in public administration,” said School of Public Affairs Director and Foundation Professor of public policy and management Donald Siegel. “Our world-class faculty constitute a potent mix of highly productive junior scholars and distinguished senior scholars who helped define the field, including seven fellows of the National Academy of Public Administration. We also serve as the editorial home of the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, edited by Professor Mary Feeney,” Siegel said.

“Our prowess in research complements our programmatic excellence, as evidenced by the school’s seven top 10 rankings in specialized fields of public administration and public policy in the most recent U.S. News & World Report rankings, more than any university in the U.S., except Indiana University. Congratulations to our faculty on this remarkable achievement.”

The school, part of the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions, continues to expand on its reputation as a national and global leader in research and programming, said Watts College Dean Jonathan Koppell.

“I congratulate the faculty of the School of Public Affairs for this remarkable recognition. They are building the already-excellent reputation of ASU as one of country’s and the world’s best schools of public affairs,” Koppell said. “It is really important to also recognize that this achievement is paired with a non-negotiable commitment to a diverse student body and deep community engagement focused on addressing our most vexing problems. This exemplifies the values and mission of Watts College.”

Mark J. Scarp

Media Relations Officer, Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions


ASU professor's new study to show how food retailers work with food banks

Two-year, $500,000 grant seeks to advance understanding of food banks’ role in the food supply chain

July 1, 2020

2020 is the year food banks’ support became more critical than ever. Millions of people have filed unemployment applications since the coronavirus pandemic began to hit the U.S. in mid-March, and long lines at food banks are well-documented.

Even without a pandemic, meeting the needs of hungry U.S. citizens is challenging. In 2019, food banks provided 4.2 billion meals to more than 40 million Americans, thanks to donations from many places, including major food retailers. Despite the economic and social importance of food banks, we know little about food banks’ role in the food supply chain. woman wearing a mask, unloading food from a truck An ASU study will look at the relationship between food retailers, food banks and food security. Photo courtesy Joel Muniz via Unsplash ( Download Full Image

That’s why the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) funded research to study the relationship between food retailers, food banks and food security.

With the $500,000 grant from the USDA NIFA, Timothy Richards, the Morrison Chair of Agribusiness in the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, will lead the grant project with researchers from the University of Illinois, Ohio State University and California Polytechnic State University.

“We want to understand food banks’ relationship with the food retail industry, food waste, and food security, and to provide policy recommendations on how to support and strengthen the interaction between food retailers and food banks,” Richards said.

Richards said food banks get their supplies from various sources — purchasing items such as rice, beans, fruits and vegetables at discounted rates from wholesalers to donations from individuals and major retailers such as Walmart, Fry's (Kroger) or Target.

The grant project will study how food banks are affected by food retailers' decisions to discount, donate or discard perishable food products. The researchers will combine retail scanner data with data on food bank donations and food insecurity data generated by Feeding America through its Map the Meal Gap data initiative.

“Understanding the relationship between the retail food sector and the food banks is especially important during COVID-19,” Richards said. “The pandemic has increased food insecurity and strained food supply chains with occasional shortages of some labor-intensive foods, such as beef, pork, poultry and possibly hand-harvested fruits and vegetables. If retailers are facing shortages, then they have less to donate, exactly at the time when food banks need them most.”

Shay Moser

Managing Editor, W. P. Carey School of Business