Beginning with my doctoral dissertation, I have been interested in sustainable local development. I devoted much of the early part of my career to research on development-related issues in Africa (particularly Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Eritrea). In 1995/1996, I served as lead consultant to UNICEF on decentralization for social/health planning in Eritrea. In the late 1990s, my career-long interest in local public management expanded to include urban China and Hong Kong. My research devotes special attention to the role of NGOs, individual citizen networks, and indigenous needs/approaches in transnational development partnerships. Work in this area has especially informed the courses and training programs I offer in international development and The University of Montana’s minor in International Development Studies. Major authored and co-authored publications include Ethiopian Provincial and Municipal Government (Michigan State University); Afocha: A Link Between Community and Administration in Harar, Ethiopia (Syracuse University); Public Policy and Administration in Africa: Lessons from Nigeria (Westview); Making Aid Work: Innovative Strategies for Africa at the Turn of the Century (University Press of America); Report on the Establishment of a Unified System of Administration for the Federal Capital Territory (Ahmadu Bello University); "Local Government Involvement in National Development Planning: Guidelines for Project Selection Based Upon Nigeria's Fourth Plan Experience," Public Administration and Development; "Development Administration in Nigeria: Inclinations and Results," in Handbook of Comparative and Development Public Administration, edited by Ali Farazmand (Marcel Dekker); "Revolution and Public Service in the Third World." In Handbook of Comparative and Development Public Administration, edited by Ali Farazmand (Marcel Dekker); Decentralization for Sustainable Development," in Development Management in Africa: Toward Dynamism, Empowerment, and Entrepreneurship, edited by Sadiq Rasheed and David Luke (Westview Press); "The Challenge of Decentralization in Eritrea," Journal of African Policy Studies (co-authored with Goran Hyden and Turhan Saleh); “One Government, Multiple Systems: Hong Kong Public Administration in Transition” (inaugural issue of Public Organization Review); “Great-Power Decentralization and the Management of Global/Local Economic Policy and Relations: Lessons in Fluidity from the People’s Republic of China,” International Review of Administrative Sciences; “The Shanghai Outlook on the WTO: Local Bureaucrats and Accession-related Reforms,” Pacific Affairs; “Subnational Managerial Transformation and the Post-WTO-Accession Business Environment in China: Shanghai Perspectives,” Thunderbird International Business Review; “Globalization, Decentralization, and Public Entrepreneurship: Reorienting Bureaucracy in the People’s Republic of China,” in Bureaucracy and Administration, edited by Ali Farazmand (CRC Press); “Growth with Sustainable Development? Impressions of Addis Ababa at the Start of 2011,” inaugural issue of Afrikan Sarvi – Horn of Africa Journal (with Phyllis B. Ngai). See list of publications.
Some of my early work focused on African politics. Major publications include "Forecast for Political Change in Ethiopia: An Urban Perspective," in Analyzing African Political Change: Applications of a New Multidimensional Framework, ed. by James R. Scarritt (Westview Press); "Competitive Transition to Civilian Rule: Nigeria's First and Second Experiments," Journal of Modern African Studies; "State Land Allocation and Class Formation in Nigeria," Journal of Modern African Studies; "Prelude to Civilian Rule: The 1979 Nigerian Elections," Africa Today; "Ethiopia: Famine, Food Production, and Changes in the Legal Order," African Studies Review; "Student Politics in Traditional Monarchies: A Comparative Analysis of Ethiopia and Nepal," Journal of Asian and African Studies; "Ethiopian Politics: Military Intervention and Prospects for Further Change," Africa Today.
I embarked on the study of refugee formation and migration in the mid-1980s -- initially with grant support from the Rockefeller Foundation. The structural and individual contributors to and consequences of population migration have been of abiding scholarly interest. My work on refugees and migration has evolved to encompass connections with foreign policy, training, organizational communication, health care, and transnational competence. This work has especially informed my senior-level course on Politics of Global Migration and my Masters of Public Health seminar on Rural Health Issues in Global Perspective. Major publications in this area include Refugees from Revolution: U.S. Policy and Third-World Migration (Westview); U.S.-China Relations Following the 1997-1998 Summits (Chinese University Press); The Expanding Role of Chinese Americans in U.S.-China Relations: Transnational Networks and Trans-Pacific Interactions (M. E. Sharpe); "Persistent Problems and Political Issues in U.S. Immigration Law and Policy," in Refugee Law and Policy: International and U.S. Responses, edited by Ved P. Nanda (Greenwood Press); "Resettled Refugees from Ethiopia: Who Gets into the United States?" Refuge; “Repatriation of African Exiles: The Decision to Return,” in Cambridge Survey of World Migration, edited by Robin Cohen (Cambridge University Press); "Refugee Settlement and Repatriation in Africa: Development Prospects and Constraints," in African Refugees: Development Aid and Repatriation, edited by Howard Adelman and John Sorenson (Westview Press); “Immigrant Transnationals and U.S. Foreign Relations,” in A Companion to American Immigration (Blackwell, 1st & 2nd editions); and Organizational Communication in Refugee-camp Situations, United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) Working Paper No. 71. See publication list.
The outcomes of transnational physician-patient consultations are critical for individual and public health in our era of mobility upheaval. As a Fulbright New Century Scholar in the inaugural Challenges to Health in a Borderless World program (2001-2002), my research project explored the role of transnational competence in medical encounters among clinicians and asylum seekers/resettled migrants in Finland. This project grew out of collaborative development of the transnational competence framework with James N. Rosenau. The framework was published in 2002 as a “Visions of International Studies” piece in International Studies Perspectives. Scholarly publications in the area of global health and forced migration include an inaugural-issue article on “Global Politics and Multinational Health-care Encounters: Assessing the Role of Transnational Competence,” EcoHealth; “Medical Encounters in Finnish Reception Centres: Asylum-seeker and Clinician Perspectives,” Journal of Refugee Studies (2005); “Clinician/Patient Connections in Ethnoculturally Nonconcordant Encounters with Political-asylum Seekers: A Comparison of Physicians and Nurses,” Journal of Transcultural Nursing (co-authored with Kirsti Sainola-Rodriguez); “Migration and Transnational Health Care: Connecting Finland and Somaliland,” Siirtolaisuus – Migration 34 (co-authored with Marja Tiilikainen); “Transnational Migration, State Policy, and Local Clinician Treatment of Asylum Seekers and Resettled Migrants: Comparative Perspectives on Reception-centre and Community Health-care Practice in Finland,” Global Social Policy; “Globalization, Migration Health, and Educational Preparation for Transnational Medical Encounters,” Globalization and Health 2; “Health-care Outcomes in Ethnoculturally Discordant Medical Encounters: The Role of Physician Transnational Competence in Consultations with Asylum Seekers,” Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health 8; “Medical Education for a Changing World: Moving Beyond Cultural Competence into Transnational Competence,” Academic Medicine 81 (co-authored with Herbert Swick); “Transforming the Boundaries of Health Care: Insights from the Transnational Outlooks and Practices of Somali Migrants,” Medical Anthropology 30 (5) (co-authored with Marja Tiilikainen); “Mental Health and Migration,” in The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration, edited by Immanuel Ness (Oxford: Blackwell); and “Immigrants and Health,” forthcoming in The Encyclopedia of U.S. Immigration, edited by James Ciment (Armonk, NY: ME Sharpe). In summer 2004, I co-directed an Arnold P. Gold Foundation-supported workshop for faculty and administrators from four U.S. medical schools on ways to pilot the transnational-competence framework in the clinical curriculum. The Trillium Health Centre in Toronto invited a presentation at their September 2005 Back-to-School Conference on “Transnational Competence: What is it and Why is it Needed at Trillium?” and, in November 2005, I participated in a Continuing Medical Education workshop on “Moving Beyond Cultural Competence: Transnational Competence in Undergraduate Medical Education” at the annual Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) conference. In spring 2006, I lectured and consulted with scholars and students in five cities across Finland through the Fulbright senior specialist program. The presentations delivered to Finnish physicians, nurses, scholars, students, local government officials, social workers, and hospital staff built upon the results of my 2002 Fulbright New Century Scholar research project on migrant-health care in Finland and on my recent work on transnational competence in medical education. Presentation topics included “Migrant-friendly Health Care for Somalis in Finland,” “Transnational Competence and Migrant Health Care: Promoting Equity in Health,” “Patient-health-care Outcomes Research: Contributions of and Challenges to the Intersubjective-assessments Approach,” “Transnational Competence and Citizenship in an Era of Global Mobility,” “Improving Transnational Health-care Encounters and Outcomes in Finland,” “Transnational-competence Education for Physicians, Nurses, and Public-health Specialists,” and (at Savonia Polytechnic’s International Day celebration) “Global Health, Human Rights, and Transnational Competence.” Sponsors for these talks included the universities of Helsinki, Tampere, Joensuu, Kuopio, and the Savonia Polytechnic; the Finland-Somali Association and the Family Federation; the International Organization for Migration and the Finnish Observatory on Discrimination; the Society for the Study of Ethnic Relations and International Migration; the Health Services Research Programme of the Academy of Finland; the TYKS Hospital in Turku; and Kuopio University Hospital and Kuopio Social and Health Care Center. The principal host for these engagements was the Department of Sociology, University of Helsinki. See cv and publication list.
Student interests feature prominently in my vision for the future of education. Throughout my career, I have been especially interested in academic program development and increasing student-exchange and internship opportunities in the Global South. At Ahmadu Bello University in Nigeria, I developed course curricula and admissions and degree/diploma requirements for new academic programs, including the M.A. in Local Government and Ph.D. in Public Administration with emphasis in Local Government. I also have consulted on the public administration undergraduate curriculum at Addis Ababa University and Asmara University and assisted The University of Belize in the establishment of an undergraduate degree program in natural-resource management. My involvement as a Fulbright New Century Scholar included development of a yet-to-be-implemented proposal to establish a parallel Fulbright New Century Students program that the other scholars endorsed prior to submission to the Institute for International Education. Earlier, I developed and presented a proposal to establish a student-mentor program in international development at a Higher Education and Global Development National Policy Roundtable co-sponsored by the Association Liaison Office for University Cooperation in Development (ALO) and the U.S. Agency for International Development. At The University of Montana, I co-initiated our popular interdisciplinary minor in International Development Studies (IDS) that added a Peace Corps Prep certification option in 2011 (the first available at a public university), co-founded an undergraduate minor in climate change studies, and led an initiative that resulted in establishment of an undergraduate minor in global public health (GPH). The GPH minor is the subject of my essay on “Transnationalism and Transdisciplinary Undergraduate Education” in The Montana Professor 22. In 2011, I was an inaugural recipient of the Paul G. Lauren Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentor Award.
Current Research Interests
My current research is focused on professional education for transnational careers, on the role of subnational actors in mitigating greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions, on transnational higher-education partnerships, and on evaluating academic programs devoted to sustainable development.
In our globally networked society, professionally trained faculty, students, and administrative staff in all fields of preparation – whether located abroad or at home -- need to move beyond international awareness and intercultural competence into transnational competence (TC). Universities can inspire student commitment to developing transnational competence through cross-disciplinary, issue-informed, and multi-regional diversity offerings in general education, through language preparation, and through area studies as well as by embedding TC preparation in contemporary professional education. With support from a spring 2008 sabbatical, I elaborated the TC framework, particularly for application in teacher education, business management, engineering, social work, agriculture, public administration, natural-resource management, and health/medicine. In 2010, Paradigm Publishers released Transnational Competence: Empowering Professional Curricula for Horizon-Rising Challenges, co-authored with Professor James N. Rosenau. A Montana university-system application appeared in “The Transnational Competence Race,” The Montana Professor (2011).
Together, the United States and China are responsible for nearly 40 per cent of total annual greenhouse-gas emissions. The central role of the PRC and the USA in global-warming trajectories coupled with political paralysis at the national level mean that prospects for effective actions that will address the Twenty-first Century interdependence challenge of climatic stabilization rest on subnational, including nongovernmental, actions and collaborations. My work devotes special attention to the strategic importance of nonstate actors, particularly Chinese Americans, and subnational governments in transnational projects and in changes affecting consumption values and behavior that promise to reduce GHG emissions. Publications include “Sustainable-development Frontiers and Divides: Transnational Actors and U.S./China Greenhouse-gas Emissions” International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology; “Global Climatic Stabilization: Challenges for Public Administration in China and the United States,” in Handbook of Globalization, Governance, and Public Administration, edited by Ali Farazmand and Jack Pinkowski (CRC Press); “Global Health and Human Rights: Challenges for Public-health Administrators in an Era of Interdependence and Mobility.” in Handbook of Globalization, Governance, and Public Administration, edited by Ali Farazmand and Jack Pinkowski (CRC Press); “Fitting a Vital Linkage Piece into the Multidimensional Emissions-reduction Puzzle: Nongovernmental Pathways to Consumption Changes in the PRC and the USA,” Climatic Change; “Underneath Kyoto: Emerging Subnational Government Initiatives and Incipient Issue-bundling Opportunities in China and the United States,” Global Environmental Politics; “Back to the Future: Bicycles, Human Health, and GHG Emissions in China,” China Environment Series; and “Climate Policy and Action 'Underneath’ Kyoto and Copenhagen: China and the USA,” Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change 1. See publication list.
My recent scholarship bridges higher education and sustainable-development. Publications and papers include “Enhancing International Research and Development-Project Activity on University Campuses: Insights from U.S. Senior International Officers,” Journal of Studies in International Education (co-authored with Darla K. Deardorff and Kerry D. Bolognese); “Enhancing Higher Education’s Engagement in International Development: Africa-U.S. Partnerships,” Journal of the World Universities Forum (co-authored with Montague Demment and Anne-Claire Hervy); “Higher Education and Sustainable Development in Africa: Why Partner Transnationally?” Background Paper for the November 2010 Ministerial Conference on Higher Education in Agriculture in Africa, Kampala, Uganda (co-authored with Montague Demment); “3Ts for the Twenty-first Century: Transborder Migration, Transnational Empowerment, and Transformation of Professional Higher Education” (Presented at the June 2009 Transnationalization and Institutional Transformations Meeting of the TRANS-NET project, Moulay Ismail University, Meknes, Morocco) “Transnational Research and Development Partnerships in Higher Education: Global Perspectives,” in The Sage Handbook of International Higher Education, edited by Darla K. Deardorff, Hans de Wit, John D. Heyl, and Tony Adams (co-authored with Milton O. Obamba); “Donors and Higher Education Partners: A Critical Assessment of U.S. and Canadian Support for Transnational Research and Sustainable Development,” Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education 42 (3); “Turbulence and Bifurcation in North-South Higher-Education Partnerships for Research and Sustainable Development,” Public Organization Review 12 (4); “China and Africa: South-South Prospects for Symmetry in Transnational Higher Education Partnerships Devoted to Sustainable Development,” China and the World 3 (in Chinese); “Donor-Supported Transnational Higher-Education Initiatives for Development and Research: A Framework for Analysis and a Call for Increased Transparency,” Higher Education Policy 26; “Transnational Higher Education and Sustainable Development: Current Initiatives and Future Prospects,” Policy Futures in Education 10 (3); “Developments in Transnational Research Linkages: Evidence from U.S. Higher-education Activity.” Journal of New Approaches in Educational Research (forthcoming); “Evaluating Sustainability Education: Lessons from International Development Experience.” Higher Education (lead author with Juha Uitto); The Transnationally Partnered University: Insights from Research and Sustainable Development Collaborations in Africa, Palgrave Macmillan’s International and Development Education Series (forthcoming) (lead author with Milton Obamba. See publication list.Jan. 2013