Todd Frederick Swanstrom
Des Lee Professor of Community Collaboration and Public Policy Administration, University of Missouri-St. Louis
Expertise & Civic Involvements
Swanstrom’s main area of expertise is urban politics and public policy, with a special focus on the ways residential living patterns shape lives and participation in politics. He conducts policy research with the Public Policy Research Center to support community development in the St. Louis region. Swanstrom has helped to create the Community Builders Network of Metro St. Louis, which aims to improve conditions in disadvantaged neighborhoods by increasing the capacities of community-based nonprofits and ensuring them a place at the table when policy is made.
"Resilience in the Face of Foreclosures: How National Actors Shape Local Responses" in Urban and Regional Policy and Its Effects, edited by Margaret Weir, Nancy Pindus, Howard Wial, and Harold Wolman (Brookings Institution Press, 2012), 60-99. Argues for federal and state policies that can empower local actors to both prevent foreclosures and deal with the spillover costs after foreclosures occur.
Justice and the American Metropolis (with ) (University of Minnesota Press, 2011). Shows that spatial injustices in American metropolitan areas are wide-ranging, often difficult to see, and will require new public policies and institutions to adequately address them.
"More Transit = More Jobs: The Impact of Increasing Funding for Public Transit," Public Policy Research Center, September, 2010. Finds that spending on transit generates more jobs than spending on highways. A report for the Transportation Equity Network, a national coalition that advocates for transportation policies serving the disadvantaged.
"The American Metropolis" in Democracy at Risk: How Political Choices Undermine Citizen Participation, and What We Can Do about It, edited by Stephen Macedo (Brookings Institution Press, 2005), 67-114. Synthesizes research on how metropolitan institutions and living patterns have undermined civic engagement.
Place Matters: Metropolitics for the 21st Century (with ) (University Press of Kansas, 2001). Synthesizes research on how concentrated poverty and suburban sprawl impact life outcomes, and proposes a political and policy agenda for creating more equitable and prosperous regions.
The Crisis of Growth Politics: Cleveland, Kucinich, and the Challenge of Urban Populism (Temple University Press, 1985). Examines critically the urban populist experiment of Mayor Dennis Kucinich of Cleveland and evaluates the prospects for more progressive urban regimes.
- "St. Louis County’s Billion-Dollar Problem," St. Louis Post-Dispatch, November 30, 2011.
- "Stop the Foreclosure Express" (with ), St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 14, 2010.
- "Why isn’t the St. Louis Area Doing More to Prevent Foreclosures?," St. Louis Beacon, July 13, 2009.
- "Collaboration Not Competition" (with ), St. Louis Post-Dispatch, June 14, 2004.
- "Charter Reform: It Means More than New Flowcharts for Bureaucrats" (with ), St. Louis Post Dispatch, August 17, 2003.
Talks and Briefings
- "Three Paradoxes of Citizen Participation," Empowerment Congress, Los Angeles, CA, January 10, 2012.
- "Creating Whole Communities: Enhancing the Capacity of Community Development Nonprofits in the St. Louis Region," University of Missouri-St. Louis, October 25, 2011.
- "Thick Injustice in the American Metropolis," University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, September 23, 2011.
- "How Should Universities Engage with their Communities? Collaboration is Not Enough," Presentation at Inauguration of the President of Alma College, April 8, 2011.
- "One Year Later: Lessons from the Passage of Prop A," (with David Kimball), University of Missouri-St. Louis, April 6, 2011.