David N. Ammons

Albert Coates Professor of Public Administration and Government

Areas of Expertise

Public administration; productivity improvement in local government; performance measurement; benchmarking


David N. Ammons writes and teaches about performance measurement, benchmarking, and productivity improvement in local government. His books on local government management include Municipal Benchmarks (M.E. Sharpe, 2012), Tools for Decision Making: A Practical Guide for Local Government(CQ Press, 2009), and Leading Performance Management in Local Government (ICMA, 2008).  His articles have appeared in Public Administration Review, American Review of Public Administration, Public Performance and Management Review, State and Local Government Review, Administration and Society, Review of Public Personnel Administration, and other public affairs journals. He has served on the National Performance Management Advisory Commission, the National Council of the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA), and the Executive Council of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA). He was elected as a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration in 2006. Ammons earned a Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma.

Selected publications

Municipal Benchmarks: Assessing Local Performance and Establishing Community Standards, Third Edition. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2012. (First and second editions published in 1996 and 2001 by Sage Publications.)

“Factors Influencing the Use of Performance Data to Improve Municipal Services: Evidence from the North Carolina Benchmarking Project,” with William C. Rivenbark. Public Administration Review, 68, No. 2 (March/April 2008), pp. 304-318.

“Performance Measurement and Managerial Thinking,” Public Performance and Management Review, 25, No. 4 (June 2002), pp. 344-347.

"Performance-Comparison Projects in Local Government: Participants’ Perspectives,” with Charles Coe and Michael Lombardo.  Public Administration Review, 61, No. 1 (January/February 2001), pp. 100-110.

“A Proper Mentality for Benchmarking,” Public Administration Review, 59, No. 2 (March/April 1999), pp. 105-109.

"Overcoming the Inadequacies of Performance Measurement in Local Government:  The Case of Libraries and Leisure Services," Public Administration Review, 55, No. 1 (January/February 1995), pp. 37-47.

Click here for a complete list of Professor Ammons’ publications.