Bonnie Johnson, AICP, PhD

Associate Professor
Primary office:
785-864-7147
Snow Hall
University of Kansas
1460 Jayhawk Blvd
Lawrence, KS


Bonnie J. Johnson, PhD, AICP is Associate Professor in the University of Kansas’ Urban Planning Program. She teaches planning history and theory, land use, and politics and planning courses. Research interests include: civic bureaucracy, staff reports, television and citizen participation, and planners working with city managers. Before returning to school for her doctorate, Johnson was a practicing city planner for eight years. While at the City of Liberty, Missouri, she was project manager for Liberty’s Blueprint for Liberty: Land Use Plan which was awarded the American Planning Association’s (APA) “Outstanding Planning Award” for the best plan in the country.  She is currently the Professional Development Officer for the Kansas Chapter of APA and her work on staff reports can be found in APA’s Planning magazine and Signature Series Webinar – Preparing for Planning Commission Meetings.​

This profile can also be viewed on the Urban Planning website.>>

Education

Ph.D.Political ScienceUniversity of Kansas

M.U.P.Urban PlanningUniversity of Kansas

M.A.Political ScienceUniversity of Kansas

B.A.Latin American StudiesUniversity of Kansas

B.A.Political ScienceUniversity of Kansas

Teaching

My approach to teaching and to the profession of city planning can be summed up with a quote from Tony Hiss about Baltimore’s Peabody Library reading room, of which he writes: “knowledge seems so abundantly available that you feel almost the same kind of gratitude you feel when you stoop to drink from a public fountain: The city doesn’t want me to go thirsty.” I want to instill in my students, who are future city planners, the commitment to caring about citizens and creating cities which provide for the needs of citizens as typified by the well-placed public drinking fountain. In my classes, I do not want my students “to go thirsty.”

Teaching Interests

  • City planning and politics
  • Sustainability
  • Land Use
  • Site Planning
  • History of planning
  • Theory of planning
  • Planning processes

Research

My search for effective planning practices results in research projects drawing from my own experiences as a practicing planner and my educational background in the related fields of urban planning, political science, and public administration. All three fields seek to understand how elected officials, public servants, and citizens interact with each other, governmental structures, and bureaucratic agencies to pursue the common good. I am interested in the impact of institutions (elections, types of city government, organizations), culture (organizational cultures, professional cultures, social capital, and civic capital), and individuals (city planners, public administrators, elected officials, citizens) on public policy. This agenda results in research on civic bureaucracy, planning practice, media and planning, and public service.​

Research Interests

  • Civic bureaucracy
  • Planning practice
  • Media and planning
  • Public service
  • Competitive elections
  • Sustainability

Selected Publications

Johnson, B. J., Peck, K., & Preston, S. (in press). City Managers have Ethics too? Comparing Planning and City Management Codes of Ethics. Journal of the American Planning Association.

Johnson, B. J. (2017). The Better Staff Report. Planning83(3).

Johnson, B. J., & Gore, N. (2016). What do the Professions “Profess”? Comparing Architecture and Planning Codes of Ethics . Architectural Science Review59(6). DOI:10.1080/00038628.2016.1194255

Johnson, B. J., & Lyles, W. (2016). The Unexamined Staff Report: Results From an Evaluation of a National Sample. Journal of the American Planning Association82(1), 22-36. DOI:10.1080/01944363.2015.1109471http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01944363.2015.1109471

McClure, K., & Johnson, B. J. (2015). Housing Programs Fail to Deliver on Neighborhood Quality, Reexamined. Housing Policy Debate25(3), 463-496. DOI:10.1080/10511482.2014.944201http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10511482.2014.944201

Johnson, B. J., & Halegoua, G. R. (2015). Can Social Media Save a Neighborhood Organization? Planning Practice & Research30(3), 248-269. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02697459.2015.1051319

Johnson, B. J. (2014). Codes of Ethics, Public Values, and What Public Servants Offer the Bureaucratic Compact. International Journal of Organization Theory and Behavior17(4), 459-497.

Johnson, B. J., & Halegoua, G. R. (2014). Potential and Challenges for Social Media in the Neighborhood Context. Journal of Urban Technology21(4), 51-75. DOI:10.1080/10630732.2014.971528http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10630732.2014.971528

Johnson, B. J., & Pierce, J. C. (2014). Is County Level of Social, Creative, and Human Capital Associated with Winning Humanities Grants in Kansas? Nonprofit Management & Leadership24(4), 503-520. DOI:10.1002/nml.21103http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/nml.21103/pdf

Pierce, J. C., Johnson, B. J., & White, S. S. (2013). Social, Creative, Human, and Political Capital Effects on Sustainability Initiatives in Kansas Counties: A Research Note. Community Development44(2), 188-199. DOI:10.1080/15575330.2012.720581http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15575330.2012.720581#

Johnson, B. J., Goerdel, H. T., Lovrich Jr., N. P., & Pierce, J. C. (2013). Social Capital and Emergency Management Planning: A Test of Community Context Effects on Formal and Informal Collaboration. American Review of Public AdministrationDOI:10.1177/0275074013504127http://arp.sagepub.com/content/early/2013/10/08/0275074013504127.full.pdf+html

Johnson, B. J. (2012). TV, Boon or Bane? Participation and a Televised Town Meeting. Planning Theory & Practice13(2), 275-293. DOI:10.1080/14649357.2012.649959http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14649357.2012.649959#

Johnson, B. J. (2012). Public Service Motivation and the Technical, Political, and Facilitator Roles of City Planners. International Journal of Public Administration35(1), 30-45. DOI:10.1080/01900692.2011.635454http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01900692.2011.635454#

Johnson, B. J., & Graves, M. (2011). Keeping It Real: What Planning Can Learn from Reality TV. Journal of the American Planning Association77(3), 214-231. DOI:10.1080/01944363.2011.592128http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01944363.2011.592128#

Johnson, B. J. (2011). Creating Civic Bureaucrats. International Public Management Journal14(2), 157-192. DOI:10.1080/10967494.2011.588887http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10967494.2011.588887#

Johnson, B. J., & Crum-Cano, B. D. (2011). Glass Walls in Urban Planning: An Examination of Policy Type and Gender Segregation within a Profession. Review of Public Personnel Administration31(4), 386-409. DOI:10.1177/0734371X11408702http://rop.sagepub.com/content/31/4/386.full.pdf+html

Johnson, B. J., & White, S. S. (2010). Promoting Sustainability through Transportation Infrastructure? Innovation and Inertia in the Kansas City Metropolitan Area. Journal of Urban Planning and Development136(4), 303-313. DOI:10.1061/(ASCE)UP.1943-5444.0000027http://ascelibrary.org/doi/pdf/10.1061/%28ASCE%29UP.1943-5444.0000027

Johnson, B. J. (2010). City Planners and Public Service Motivation. Planning Practice & Research25(5), 563-586. DOI:10.1080/02697459.2010.522854http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/02697459.2010.522854#

Johnson, B. J. (2009). Site Planning for Planners: The View from the Other Side. Journal for Education in the Built Environment4(1), 31-56. DOI:10.11120/jebe.2009.04010031http://www.cebe.heacademy.ac.uk/jebe/pdf/BonnieJohnson4(1).pdf

Johnson, B. J. (2005). Identities of Competitive States in U.S. Presidential Elections: Electoral College Bias or Candidate-Centered Politics? Publius: The Journal of Federalism35(2), 337-355. DOI:10.1093/publius/pji017 http://publius.oxfordjournals.org/content/35/2/337.full.pdf+html

Selected Awards & Honors

"Featured Faculty" on the website for the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning
http://www.acsp.org/?page=FFBonnieJohnson 

Architectural Science Review
2017

"Featured Paper" in the Architectural Science Review Newsletter

2016

Recognition of Teaching Excellence - University of Kansas' Celebration of Teaching Award (Center for Teaching Excellence)
2011

Best Use of Technology for a University Urban and Regional Planning Program, Technology Division of the American Planning Association, Digital Storytelling as Learning and Communication Tool
2009

Outstanding Planning Award for a Plan
American Planning Association, Liberty, MO: Blueprint for Liberty Land Use Plan
2000

Excellence in Planning Award
American Planning Association, Missouri Chapter, Liberty, MO: City of Liberty’s Wireless Communication Facilities Plan and Ordinance
1998

Phi Kappa Phi
1992

Phi Beta Kappa
1990


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Ranked in the top 10 master of public affairs programs in the nation
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#1 in the nation for city management and urban policy

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#5 in the nation for public management

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Three faculty have won W.T. Kemper Fellowships for Teaching Excellence
Rosemary O’Leary is KU’s Edwin O. Stene Distinguished Professor of Public Administration
Four MPA graduates have been elected president of the International City/County Management Association (ICMA)
Founder of the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory (JPART)
Four faculty are National Academy of Public Administration Fellows
Bob Kipp, vice president of Hallmark Cards, was a 2012 recipient of the CLAS Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award
Kathleen Sebelius, U.S. secretary of health and human services, was a 2009 recipient of the CLAS Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award
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