George Mason University


Darrene L. Hackler, Ph.D.

Affiliate Factulty

Department of Public and International Affairs MSN 3F4

George Mason University

4400 University Drive

Fairfax, VA 22030-4444

Fax: 703-993-1399


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Darrene L. Hackler is an affiliate faculty at George Mason University in the Department of Public and International Affairs. Until August 2012, she was an associate professor in the department where she taught domestic and comparative urban politics, economic development, policy analysis, research methods, and information technology policy. She was also the advisor of the Urban Suburban Studies minor. Her research focuses on the political economy of innovation, entrepreneurship, the technology industry, telecommunications infrastructure, economic sustainability, and green innovation/clean-tech energy. Her book, Cities in the Technology Economy (ME Sharpe 2006), examines the effects of technology industries and infrastructures on cities and the local policy actions required for effective responses to these challenges. 

She has received a number of grants and contracts. Her recent work includes analysis of economic sustainability planning and frameworks for Arlington, Virginia Economic Development and analysis of Virginia infrastructure and education as a state partner for the State Budget Crisis Task Force. For the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, she examined entrepreneurship, women's business ownership, and innovation. For CGI Initiative for Collaborative Government, she conducted two studies. The first was an examination of federal, state, and local policy utilization of stimulus funds for long-term investment strategies; the second was a review local economic development practices of on-shoring and industrial diversification. For the Small Business Administration, she examined the connection between human capital and women’s business ownership. For a coalition of state and local associations, she analyzed the future transportation policy alternatives. She was also part of the research team that designed an Information and Communication Technology Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for Orange County, California, under a grant from the Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce. 

She has work published in Public Administration Review, Urban Affairs Review, Journal of Urban Affairs, Journal of Urban Technology, Canadian Journal of Regional Science, American Behavioral Scientist, Annals of Cases on Information Technology, Innovation Policy in the Knowledge-Based Economy, and Cities in the Telecommunications Age: The Fracturing of Geographies.

Her professional experience includes serving as a senior fellow at the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (2010) working on green innovation and clean-tech policy; working as an analyst for a telecommunications industry analysis firm; serving as a senior research associate with Claremont Information Technology Institute, and operating as an independent telecommunications consultant to executive real estate developers of commercial real estate, resort communities and master-planned communities.

Dr. Hackler received her M.A. in public policy and Ph.D. in political science and economics from Claremont Graduate University in California, and a B.A. in political science and economics from the College of Idaho.

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Current and Past Research

  1. Examination of local sustainability initiatives;
  2. Examination of the effect of innovation and entrepreneurship on economic development;
  3. Examination of the effect of geography and gender on the production of knowledge into economically useful innovations in new high-technology firms;
  4. Examination of  how federal, state, and local policy can utilize stimulus funds and take actions to go beyond recovery, particularly in the areas of broadband investment and technology-based economic development;
  5. Examination of economic development practices, including "onshoring" or low cost domestic sourcing as a viable economic development model for rural and second-tier metro areas;
  6. Analysis of the local political economy of cities in the new economy and the implications of geographical digital divide on the future livabilty of cities;
  7. Examination of new economy industrial location patterns vis-à-vis local economic development and telecommunications infrastructure;
  8. Development of a broadband metric and score card to assess regional information technology infrastructure and its role in regional economic development; and
  9. Analysis of information technology innovation in the non-profit sector.

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Course Syllabi


PUAD 680 Managing Information Resources (Fall 2000), (Spring 2002), (Fall 2003), (Fall 2004), (Fall 2005), (Spring 2007)

PUAD 729 Technology and Economic Development (Spring 2005)

PUAD 741 Policy Analysis (Fall 2006), (Fall 2007), (Fall 2008), (Fall 2009), (Fall 2011)

PUAD 759 Issues in Local Government Administration (Spring 2009)

GOVT 500 Research Methods in Political Science (Fall 2009) (Spring 2012)


GOVT 300 Research Methods and Analysis (Spring 2002), (Fall 2003), (Fall 2004), (Fall 2005)

GOVT 309 Government and Politics of Metro Areas (Spring 2004) , (Spring 2005), (Fall 2006), (Spring 2008), (Spring 2009)

GOVT 357 Urban Governance and Planning (Spring 2007)
GOVT 459 Information Decisions and Management in Government (Fall 2000)

GOVT 491 Honors (Fall 2007), (Fall 2008)

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Last revised: October 2012