Stuart Kasdin

Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Public Administration
Address: Media and Public Affairs Building
805 21st St. NW
Washington, DC, 20052
Phone: 202-994-6274
Fax: 202-994-6792

Areas of Expertise

Public budgeting
Performance measurement
Bureaucratic politics
Institutional theory
Political behavior and governance


Professor Kasdin’s research focuses on governance questions, including public institutions’ design and management, and governmental budgeting. He came upon these interests through his work. Before returning to graduate school, Professor Kasdin worked at the White House Office of Management and Budget for over 11 years, focusing on the agencies in the Department of Agriculture. His primary responsibility in OMB was in overseeing the agencies’ budget requests and subsequently, assessing program implementation and administration. Accordingly, he conducted on-going policy analyses of government programs in agriculture and the environment. Moreover, as a senior program examiner, he was extensively involved in preparing policy recommendations and in drafting legislation.

As a result, his recent research has examined the federal budget. For example, he has examined why some federal programs are structured as entitlements, while others are appropriated annually. The analysis tested different possible explanations for the type of budget design used. Additionally, the analysis considers the implications of the budget design choice: do we see differences in the performance of these programs? In other on-going research (with Steve Haptonstahl of University of California, Davis), he is working to classify government programs, based on the observability of program outputs or outcomes. At the TSPPPA, he will be teaching classes on public budgeting and finance.

Professor Kasdin received a PhD in Political Science from University of California, Santa Barbara. For his dissertation, supported by the National Science Foundation, he used survey experiments to examine how voter decision-making changes, as candidate characteristics are varied. The research has implications for understanding both vote choices and political accountability. Previously, he obtained Masters Degrees in Agricultural and Resource Economics, as well as International Agricultural Development, with a focus on Project Design and Management, from University of California, Davis.

Finally, Professor Kasdin has an interest in international development. A former Peace Corps Volunteer (Ecuador), he has worked at the Freedom from Hunger Foundation and World Bank, gaining extended residences in India, Ecuador, Costa Rica and Mexico.


PhD, Political Science, University of California, Santa Barbara
MA, Political Science, University of California, Santa Barbara,
MS, Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California, Davis
MS, International Agricultural Development (Project Design and Management), University of California, Davis)
BA, History, State University of NY, Binghamton (SUNY)



“Recipes for Pork and Other Delicious Offerings for the New Administration,” Public Administration Review, 70(3) Spring 2010, p. 401-411

“California's Once and Future Budget Crisis: No Country for Old Men or Young Mothers, Sick Children, or Even Otters," California Journal of Politics and Policy, 2 (2), Article 7 Winter 2010, p. 1-10

"Reinventing Reforms: How to Improve Program Management Using Performance Measures. Really." Journal of Public Budgeting and Finance, 30 (1) Summer 2010, p. 50-77.

“The Quest for Results: Opportunities for Using Performance Measurement in Chinese Public Administration,” Chinese Public Administration Review, forthcoming


Daiwa Soken (1992), Dawn of a New Era: U.S. Policy Directions and the Presidential Campaign, Washington, DC: Daiwa Institute of Research; (chapter on agro-industrial sector).


“A Better Way to Steer Private Insurers,” The Washington Post. Thursday, September 17, 2009.


ASSOCIATION OF PUBLIC POLICY ANALYSIS AND MANAGEMENT - “Budgeting During Recessions: The Role for Innovation and Public Engagement” 

ASSOCIATION FOR BUDGET AND FINANCE MANAGEMENT - “Why Do Programs Die? The Role of Institutions”

AMERICAN POLITICAL SCIENCE ASSOCIATION - “The Role of Identity in the Assessment of Public Figures”

PUBLIC CHOICE CONFERENCE – Paper delivered, “Budgeting with Fire: Evaluating the Program Design of Entitlement and Discretionary Programs;” Discussant, “Budgeting,” and “Tax Compliance,” March, 2010

MIDWEST POLITICAL SCIENCE ASSOCIATION -- Paper presentation: "Winning a Mandate: What Elections Tell Us about Voter Preferences," (with Joseph Cooper); Panel Chair, “Public Preferences, Elections, and Policy Responsiveness,” and "Performance Management" April, 2009

AMERICAN POLITICAL SCIENCE ASSOCIATION – Poster session, “Voter Decisionmaking in Primaries and Non-Partisan Elections,” August 2008

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR PUBLIC OPINION RESEARCH – Paper delivered, "Voter Decisionmaking, Issues, and Uncertainty," May 2008

PUBLIC CHOICE CONFERENCE – Paper delivered, “Voter Decisionmaking, Uncertainty, and Political Accountability;” Panel Chair, “Ideology and Institutions,” March 2008

CONFERENCE ON PUBLIC GOVERNANCE IN URBAN COMMUNITIES, Shenzhen University, China -- Paper Delivered, “Effective Public Management through the Improved Design and Use of Performance Measures,” August 2005

ASSOCIATION FOR PUBLIC POLICY ANALYSIS AND MANAGEMENT (APPAM) CONFERENCE -- Paper delivered, “Using Budget Systems to Enhance Program Performance and Agency Management,” October 2004

PUBLIC CHOICE CONFERENCE – Paper delivered, “Campaign Contributions, Public Goods, and Government Accountability and Representativeness,” March 2004

POLITICAL SCIENCE DEPARTMENT, UCSB – Works-in-Progress, November 27, 2007; May 1, 2008

Classes Taught

PPPA 6005  Public Budgeting, Revenue, and Expenditure Analysis
PPPA 6051  Governmental Budgeting