Joseph Hafer

Assistant Professor

(901) 678-3349
223 Browning Hall
Office Hours
Email for Appointment Information
Joseph Hafer, Assistant Professor

About Dr. Hafer

Joseph Hafer, Ph.D. joined the faculty as an assistant professor in the Department of Public and Nonprofit Administration in 2020. He received his Ph.D. in public administration from the Pennsylvania State University and his M.S. in psychology from Villanova University. He has over fifteen years of public service experience in state and county government and public management consulting. His research focuses broadly on producing public value via public policy implementation in an era of interorganizational collaboration and cross-sector governance, particularly in state and local contexts. His research has been published in the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Perspectives on Public Management & Governance, and American Review of Public Administration, among others.


  • 2014-2019 Ph.D., Public Administration, Pennsylvania State University Harrisburg
    Dissertation title: The Theory of Pragmatic Governance: A Classic Grounded
    Theory Study of Pennsylvania's State Forest Management Practices
  • 2006-2009 M.S., Psychology, Villanova University; Villanova, Pennsylvania
    Thesis title: The Role of Self-Schema Status in Moderating Cognitive Dissonance
  • 2000-2004 B.A., Psychology, Millersville University of Pennsylvania; Millersville, Pennsylvania

Research Interest

  • Collaborative governance
  • State and local government
  • Public value
  • Policy implementation
  • Public management consulting
  • Organization theory
  • Self-consistency theories in social psychology