John A. Hoornbeek

Kent State University
Health Policy and Management, College of Public Health

311 Moulton Hall
Kent State University
Kent, OH
44242 |  Visit Personal Website

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My current research agenda focuses on the design and implementation of public policies, particularly in intergovernmental settings. While I often focus on environmental and public health policies and issues, I also have a continuing interest in issues of public management and administration. My current and recent work focuses on water resource management, the integration of environmental policies across policy sectors, as well as on public management issues associated with horizontal governance and public health service delivery.

Hoornbeek, John and Joshua Filla, Anisha Akella Naga Venkata, Saurabh Kalla, and Edward Chiyaka. 2016. Addressing Harmful Algal Blooms: Nutrient Reduction Policies in Ohio's Lake Erie Basin and Other American Water Basins, Center for Public Policy and Health, College of Public Health, Kent State University, August 31.
Abstract: Since a harmful algal bloom (HAB) contaminated the City of Toledo water supply in Ohio in 2014, policymakers and natural resource administrators have been seeking ways to reduce nutrient flows in the Ohio Lake Erie basin. This report assesses policy tools currently used in efforts to reduce nutrient flows in the Ohio Lake Erie water basin and compares them to policy tools used by other water basin protection programs in the United States. The report uses Hood's (1984) policy tools framework to guide its assessment of nutrient reduction policy tools. It also compares the policy tools identified with policy tools used in the Chesapeake Bay, the Long Island Sound, and the Tampa Bay in Florida. Based on the comparisons made across these water basin programs, the report offers ideas regarding additional nutrient reduction efforts that could be implemented to combat HABs and excess nutrient enrichment problems in Lake Erie.
Hoornbeek, John A, and Michael Morris, Matthew Stefanak, Joshua Filla, Rohit Prodhan, & Sharla Smith. 2015. The Impacts of Local Health Department Consolidation on Public Health Expenditures: Evidence from Ohio, American Journal of Public Health, Vol. 105, No. S2, S174-S180, April.
Abstract: This study examines the effects of Local Health Department (LHD) consolidations on the total and administrative expenditures of LHDs in Ohio during the period from 2001 to 2011. We identified a total of 20 consolidations of LHDs occurring during this time period in Ohio, and obtained our data from annual records maintained by the state and through interviews conducted with senior local health officials. Our findings indicate that consolidating health departments experienced a reduction in total expenditures of approximately 16% (p=0.017), while we found no statistically significant change in administrative expenses. County health officials interviewed concurred that their consolidations yielded financial benefits, and they also asserted that their consolidations yielded public health service improvements.
Hoornbeek, John and Evan Hansen, Evan Ringquist, and Robert Carlson. 2013. "Implementing Water Pollution Policy in the United States: Total Maximum Daily Loads and Collaborative Watershed Management". Society and Natural Resources: An International Journal, 26 (4),April, pages 420-436.
Abstract: This article builds on a growing literature about collaborative environmental policymaking and assesses its use in relation to a major element of American water pollution policy—the total maximum daily load (TMDL) program. It extends current literature by tying collaborative policymaking to a key element of the federal Clean Water Act and by compiling information on the implementation of actions recommended in TMDL reports. We find that recommendations contained in TMDL reports are being implemented in many—but not all—of the TMDL-limited watersheds in Ohio and West Virginia. In addition, we find that the presence of a collaborative watershed group is positively associated with perceived progress in TMDL implementation. However, we also find that current efforts are far from sufficient, and we suggest that future efforts to understand collaborative watershed management should take account of TMDL processes and the federal policy structures in which they are embedded.
Hoornbeek, John. 2011. Water Pollution Policies and the American States: Runaway Bureaucracies or Congressional Control? State University of New York Press, Albany NY.
Abstract: In this volume, John A. Hoornbeek provides a comprehensive treatment of American water pollution policy, including its history and implementation, as well as ideas for policy reform. Focusing on Congress’s statutory directions in the Federal Water Pollution Control Act since 1948 and state compliance, he throws into relief the complex and often troubled relationship between the laws enacted by Congress and the public policies produced by state governments that implement them. Compliance at the state level can be affected and sometimes disturbed by national policymaking processes, state politics, and the effects of federal oversight practices. As convincingly demonstrated in these pages, American water pollution policy reflects neither runaway bureaucracies nor congressional control, but rather a complex intergovernmental process that is structured around Congress’s statutory directions.
Hoornbeek, John A., and Aimee Budnik, Tegan Beechey, and Josh Filla. Consolidating Health Departments in Summit County, Ohio: A One Year Retrospective, Center for Public Administration and Public Policy and the College of Public Health, Kent State University, June, 2012.
Abstract: In January 2011, three health agencies in Summit County, Ohio -- the Summit County Health District (SCHD), the Akron Health Department (AHD), and the Barberton Health Department (BHD) – began implementing a consolidation of their operations into one county-wide health agency. Since that time, the new organization -- Summit County Public Health -- has addressed a number of challenges. This study identifies those challenges and describes how the new organization has addressed them. It also addresses the likely impacts of the consolidation on public health capacities, services, and the costs of publiic health service provision in Summit County, Ohio.

Substantive Focus:
Law and Policy
Energy and Natural Resource Policy
Environmental Policy PRIMARY
Health Policy SECONDARY
Comparative Public Policy

Theoretical Focus:
Policy Process Theory
Agenda-Setting, Adoption, and Implementation SECONDARY
Policy Analysis and Evaluation PRIMARY