Portrait of John Bryson
237 Humphrey School
Leadership and Management Area
Areas of Expertise
Public management; policy and program implementation; strategic planning; nonprofit and NGO management; collaborative governance; integrative leadership


John M. Bryson is McKnight Presidential Professor of Planning and Public Affairs at the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. He works in the areas of leadership, strategic management, and the design of organizational and community change processes. He wrote the best-selling and award-winning Strategic Planning for Public and Nonprofit Organizations, 5th Edition (2018), and co-wrote with Barbara C. Crosby the award-winning Leadership for the Common Good, 2nd Edition (2005). He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration.

Professor Bryson has received many awards for his work, including five best book awards, six outstanding article awards, the General Electric Award for Outstanding Research in Strategic Planning from the Academy of Management, and the Distinguished Research Award and the Charles H. Levine Memorial Award for Excellence in Public Administration, given jointly by the American Society for Public Administration and the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration. In 2011 he received the Dwight Waldo Award from the American Society for Public Administration; the award honors persons who have made “outstanding contributions to the professional literature of public administration over an extended scholarly career of at least 25 years.” In 2018 he received the H. George Frederickson Award for "career contributions to the field of public management" from the Public Management Research Association. He and Barbara C. Crosby were joint winners of the 2019 Keith G. Provan Award for Outstanding Contributions to Empirical Theory from the Public and Nonprofit Division of the Academy of Management.

He currently serves on the editorial boards of Academy of Management Discoveries, International Public Management Journal, Perspectives on Public Management and Governance, Public Management Review, and Public Performance and Management Review. Professor Bryson has served in a variety of roles at the university and Humphrey School, including twice being associate dean. He has consulted with a wide variety of governing bodies, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and for-profit corporations in North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.

Professor Bryson holds a doctorate and master of science degree in urban and regional planning, and a master of arts degree in public policy and administration, all from the University of Wisconsin. He was awarded a BA degree in economics from Cornell University.


PhD in Urban and regional planning (University of Wisconsin, 1978)

Bryson, J. M., Crosby, B. C. & Seo, D. (2020). Using a Design Approach to Create Collaborative Governance, Policy and Politics, 48(1), 167-189

Bryson, J. M. & George, B. (2020). Strategic Management in Public Administration. In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics . Oxford University Press: New York, NY USA

Bryson, J. M., Crosby, B. C. & Seo, D.. Strategizing on Behalf of Social Enterprise: The Case of the Metropolitan Economic Development Association and Catalyst, Public Management Review,

Crosby, B. C. & Bryson, J. M. (2018). Why Leadership of Public Leadership Research Matters: And What To Do About It, Public Management Review, 20(9), 1265-1286

Bryson, J. M., Edwards, L. H. & Van Slyke, D. (2018). Getting Strategic About Strategic Planning Resarch, Public Management Review, 20(3), 317-339