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Dr. Naim Kapucu is Pegasus Professor at the University of Central Florida (UCF) and was the director of the School of Public Administration at UCF between August 2015 – August 2020. He is the founding director of the Center for Public and Nonprofit Management (CPNM) at UCF (2008-2011). He is also joint faculty at the School of Politics, Security, and International Affairs and the Center for Resilient, Intelligent and Sustainable Energy Systems (RISES). Dr. Kapucu received Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Applied Public Policy, Democratic Resilience award jointly hosted by Flinders University and Carnegie Mellon University Australia in 2021. He is an elected fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA).

Dr. Kapucu's main research interests are emergency and crisis management, network leadership and governance, decision-making in complex environments, and social inquiry and public policy, and collaborative public management. Dr. Kapucu has published widely in areas of public administration and policy, network governance, crisis leadership, and emergency management. His work has been published in Public Administration Review, Administration & Society, Journal of Public Administration Theory and Research, the American Review of Public Administration, Public Administration, International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, and Disasters: The Journal of Disaster Studies, Policy, and Management. He is the author and editor of ten books including: Network governance (with Qian Hu); The Network Governance in Response to Acts of Terrorism: Comparative Analyses, Managing Emergencies and Crises (with Alp Ozerdem), Disaster Resiliency: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (with Hawkins, and Rivera), and Disaster and Development (with Liou). He is in editorial board of more than twenty journals in his field.

Dr. Kapucu has received many accolades and awards for his research at the university-wide level and at academic conferences. He received the Best Paper Award for his article titled “Communication in Crisis: Boundary Spanners in Multi-agency Coordination” at the 65th ASPA National Conference in 2004. He was a recipient of the William Petak Award, Section on Emergency and Crisis Management (SECM) for the best paper on an Emergency Management topic at the 2011 ASPA Annual Conference. He also received an Outstanding Paper Award at the Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2011 for the article entitled “Collaborative emergency management and national emergency management network” published in Disaster Prevention and Management: An International Journal. Dr. Kapucu was a recipient of the 2019 Pegasus Professor Award (the highest faculty distinction at UCF) and the Luminary Award in 2017. Dr. Kapucu has received an Excellence in Research Award in 2010 and a Research Incentive Award in 2009 and 2015. He has also been inducted into the University of Central Florida Millionaires Club for receiving more than a million dollars in external funding. He has received grants from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, US Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Science Foundation (NSF), US Health and Human Services Agency (HHS), and US Department of Education among others.

He teaches network governance, leadership in public service, emergency and crisis management, and network analysis in public policy and management courses. He is a recipient of the Teaching Faculty Leadership Award for 2004-2005 academic year and Service Learning Faculty Recognition Award for the academic year 2006-2007 at the University of Central Florida. He, also, received the Teaching Incentive Program (TIP) Award (university-wide competitive award) in 2009, an Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award in the College of Health and Public Affairs in 2010 and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Award from UCF in 2011.

He taught at the University of Pittsburgh (PA), Penn State University (PA), and Robert Morris University (PA) before coming to UCF in 2003.Dr. Kapucu received his Ph.D. in Public and International Affairs from the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) of the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 2003. Prior to that, he earned a Master of Public Policy and Management degree from Heinz College's School of Public Policy and Management, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1997.

Areas of Expertise

  • Public Administration and Policy
  • Network Governance and Leadership
  • Emergency and Crisis Management


Ph.D. in Public and International Affairs, University of Pittsburgh
Master of Public Management, Carnegie Mellon University


Dr. Kapucu’s main research interests are leadership, network governance and decision-making in complex environments. His research seeks to understand how networks, such as public-nonprofit partnerships, influence public service delivery. Specifically, his research explores the problem of building collaboration among public, private, and nonprofit organizations to achieve public service goals in response to disasters and crises, and what factors contribute to successful partnerships or inhibit their development. His research uses networks as a framework for studying interorganizational performance and network analysis as an analytic tool in managing natural and man-made disasters, planning for emergencies and reducing risk, coordinating intergovernmental operations, and building leadership and technical capacities. Network Science constitutes a field of substantial interest and importance to democratic societies that are seeking to solve complex policy problems with innovative means at reasonable cost.

Dr. Kapucu has dedicated his professional career to the study of emergency and crisis management and homeland security, which lead to earning an international reputation as a leader in the field.

Research Interests

  • Public Administration and Policy
  • Leadership
  • Network Governance
  • Urban Resilience
  • Social Inquiry
  • Public Policy

Research Centers/Institute/Lab Affiliations

  • Center for Resilient, Intelligent and Sustainable Energy Systems (RISES)
  • Center for Public and Nonprofit Management (CPNM)
  • National Center for Integrated Coastal Research
  • Puerto Rico Research Hub

Faculty Cluster Initiatives

  • Resilient, Intelligent and Sustainable Energy Systems
  • Integrated Coastal Research

Funded Projects

  • Leveraging Smart Technologies and Managing Community Resilience through Networked Communities and Cross-Sector Partnerships. National Science Foundation (NSF).
  • Co-evolving Communication and Coordination Networks in Emergency Management. UCF Downtown Interdisciplinary Research Initiative (DIRI)
  • Enabling large-scale adaptive integration of technology hubs to enhance community resilience through decentralized urban food-water-energy nexus decision support. Belmont Forum/National Science Foundation (NSF).


At the national level, Dr. Kapucu has been an executive council member and chair of the Section on Crises and Emergency Management and Public Performance and Management, a board member/chair and founder of the Complexity and Systems Studies Network Section, and chair of the prestigious Section on Public Performance and Management. He has organized and chaired numerous panels at ASPA conferences, as well as at other prominent national and international conferences. He was the conference char of American Society for Public Administration 2020 annual conference. He also served in research, doctoral education, comprehensive school, annual conference committees, and chaired dissertation award committee for Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA).

Dr. Kapucu reviewed grant proposals for funding agencies including the NSF and the Economic & Social Research Council, UK; and The Dutch Research Council (NWO). He serves or served over fifty (50) journals in public policy and administration.

From 2012 to 2015, Dr. Kapucu served as the director of the Master of Public Administration (MPA) program, and he is the advisor for nearly 200 students in that program.

In 2015, Dr. Kapucu was appointed as the director of the School of Public Administration after a national search based on his leadership ability and strong research background.

  • Board of Directors, Florida Policy Institute, March 2021- Present
  • Member, ASPA Fred W. Riggs Award for Lifetime Scholarly Achievement in International and Comparative Administration, 2022
  • Member, the Camilla Strivers Award committee for the best article in Perspectives on Public Management and Governance (PPMG), 2021
  • Advisory board member, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), Metropolis and London School of Economics and Political Science, Cities, Emergency Governance Initiative for Cities and Regions, 2020- Present
  • Executive Board Member, Section on International and Comparative Administration (SICA), American Society for Public Administration (ASPA), 2016-2022
  • Conference Co-chair, American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) Annual Conference, 2020
  • UCF Strategic Planning Work Group


  • Elected Fellow, National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA), 2021
  • Pegasus Professor (highest academic award at UCF), Public Administration and Policy, University of Central Florida (UCF), 2019
  • Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Applied Public Policy, Democratic Resilience jointly hosted by Flinders University and Carnegie Mellon University- Australia, Academic Year 2021-2022
  • Research Incentive Award (RIA). University of Central Florida, 2021, 2015, 2009
  • Fred W. Riggs Award for Lifetime Scholarly Achievement in International and Comparative Administration, ASPA’s Section on International and Comparative Administration (SICA), 2018
  • UCF Luminary, (UCF’s new award designed to shine a light on exceptional faculty whose work is advancing their discipline and making a difference, 2017
  • Outstanding Leadership in International Education Award, 2012, University of Central Florida
  • Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Award, University of Central Florida, April 22, 2011
  • Excellence in Professional Service, University wide, University of Central Florida, March 2, 2011


  • PAD 7827 Network Governance
  • PAF 7317 Social Inquiry and Public Policy
  • PAD 7706 Advanced Research Design for Public Administration and Policy
  • PAF 7802 Advanced Research Methodology for Public Affairs
  • PAD 6829 Network Analysis in Public Policy and Management
  • PAD 6439 Leadership in Public Service
  • PAD 6836 Comparative Global Public Administration
  • PAD 6062 Advanced Concepts and Applications (Capstone Course)
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