Alfred Tat-Kei Ho

Primary office:
Wescoe Hall
Room 4060U

Dr. Alfred Ho's teaching and research focus on public budgeting, performance management, citizen engagement, and e-government. He has also advised state and local officials in the U.S. and in other countries on their performance-oriented reforms. Before he joined KU, he taught at Iowa State University and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). He received his Master of Public Affairs and Ph.D.from the School of Public & Environmental Affairs, Indiana University (Bloomington).


I teach two graduate classes regularly, Resource Allocation and Control, and Performance Management and Governance. Through case studies, in-class discussion, and class projects, these classes create opportunities for students to explore, extend, and apply the knowledge they gain through readings and lecture materials. The class projects often include service learning components by engaging real clients from state and local governments so that students can apply what they learn and integrate that with community service and research. Occasionally, I also teach other graduate classes, including a class on performance audit. In all of my courses, I like to combine online learning and in-class lectures and exercises so that students can enjoy a variety of learning experiences and use different formats and tools to achieve the best learning outcomes.

Teaching Interests

  • Public budgeting
  • Public finance
  • Financial management
  • Performance management and governance
  • State and local government
  • Comparative public administration


In 1990, the Carnegie Foundation published the report Scholarship Reconsidered, which redefines scholarship in terms of “discovery”, “teaching”, “integration”, and “application” and emphasizes the need for academics to use research discoveries to address the needs of the larger community and to improve learning. A similar call for service was also done by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), urging academics to interact more closely with policymakers and the public to contribute to evidence-based policymaking in government.

I share this vision of scholarship. My publications are often produced as engaged research to advance the practice of public administration locally, nationally, and internationally.

Research Interests

  • Public budgeting
  • Performance management and governance
  • Local government
  • Comparative budget reform, citizen participation, e-government.


Following the vision established by the 1990 Carnegie Foundation report on Scholarship Reconsidered, I do not believe that faculty service should be completely separate from research and teaching activities. Hence, I often use my classes to engage real clients and provide service learning opportunities for students. In my research, I often work closely with state and local officials and community leaders who provide funding for me to help them solve practical and important problems in budgetary and performance management practices.

I am a member of a few professional associations, including the American Society for Public Administration, the Association of Budgeting and Financial Management, and the China-America Association for Public Affairs. I also serve in the editorial boards of a few journals and in the National Council of the American Society for Public Administration.

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Ranked in the top 10 master of public affairs programs in the nation
—U.S. News & World Report
#1 in the nation for city management and urban policy

— U.S. News & World Report

#5 in the nation for public management

— U.S. News & World Report
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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