RECENT RESEARCH PUBLICATIONS
Published Peer-Reviewed Articles Hot Off the Press in 2022
For the latest peer-reviewed content that Blair has published check out the following work:
THE PARADOX OF COMPULSORY VOLUNTEERING: A TEXTUAL ANALYSIS OF CHARITY AS PUNISHMENT ON U.S. TELEVISION
With Dr. Kim Wiley (Florida) and Talia Skollar (Florida)
in Journal of Public Affairs Education
Preconceived expectations for one’s behavior drive how people interact with their communities. Messaging via pop culture is a common source for citizens to learn about one community engagement tool: compulsory volunteering. Compulsory volunteering, like court-ordered community service and school-based volunteering, provides an opportunity to learn and “give back” to one’s community. The authors ask, what is the value of compulsory volunteering according to pop culture messaging? Textual analysis is used to identify common themes among 48 episodes of U.S. television about community service and service-learning. Findings indicate that popular culture teaches society that compulsory volunteering is more often a chore to avoid than a way to give back. Volunteers on television perceive power as placed in the wrong hands, and plots center on regaining agency. This power displacement becomes problematic if viewers perceive the volunteer supervisor as an antagonist to defeat. Nonprofits should anticipate misunderstandings when onboarding coerced volunteers.
SWOOSHED: HOW NIKE AND THE CITY OF NEW YORK COULD POTENTIALLY CHANGE THE LANDSCAPE OF CITY BRANDING THROUGH APPAREL LICENSING AGREEMENTS
Cities across the United States are increasingly implementing branding into their strategic plans. Several municipalities are finding creative ways to do so, paced by New York City’s 2019 licensing agreement with sportswear giant, Nike. The city (via NYC & Company) and Nike entered into a two-year agreement that is claimed by Nike as the first known partnership of its kind. The contract allows the sportswear company to produce footwear and apparel with nearly all the city’s likenesses, with product release subject to the city’s approval. This Viewpoint analyzes the cultural ties that serve as the foundation of the relationship between the two entities and potential impact of nonfinancial elements to consider within the agreement. The article offers questions that practitioners should ponder when deciding to enter licensing agreements when opportunities become available.
THE EROSION OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE STATE UNDER PRESIDENT TRUMP: CITIZENS PUSHBACK AGAINST INDIVIDUAL AND INSTITUTIONAL RACISM
President Trump encouraged bad state actors within the administrative state to contribute to inequities for civilians. We highlight how Trump's actions and rhetoric led to increased individual, institutional and systemic racism and violence. As a response to this increased violence and rhetoric, we discuss the role civilians (including professional athletes) played in engaging in protests and the 2020 election. Given that more individuals voted in that election cycle, we emphasize the importance for public administration to adapt, evolve, and engage with new actors concerned with administrative action or inaction
WE CAN’T JUST SHUT UP AND PLAY: HOW THE NBA AND WNBA ARE HELPING DISMANTLE SYSTEMIC RACISM
In this dialogue, we explore the emergence of the Black American athlete as a key group in creating change within the administrative state, highlighted by the actions of LeBron James and Maya Moore as well as organizational support from both the NBA and the WNBA to combat social injustice across several settings. Finally, we assert that athletes play a powerful role in pushing forward the conversation around institutional and systemic racism in society.
PLAYING OFFENSE: HOW ATHLETES ARE IMPACTING A CHANGING ADMINISTRATIVE STATE
The start of the 2020s presents a broken American administrative system plagued by state ineptitude in a time of turmoil and government distrust. In their protests, marginalized citizens have seen their voices amplified by integral parts of their communities for whom they have cheered: Athletes. This Perspective draws attention to the idea of super citizens and their ability to influence policy. We argue that Black athlete activism that centers their social reality and legitimizes Black Lives Matter for broader populations is one example of a punctuated equilibrium that work to achieve administrative state change