Cody A. Drolc

Assistant Professor

University of South Carolina



I am an Assistant Professor of Public Administration and Policy at the University of South Carolina. Prior to joining the faculty at UofSC, I earned my Ph.D. in political science from the University of Missouri with concentrations in public administration and American politics.

I study issues at the intersection of public administration, administrative politics, and public policy. Most of research focuses on the broader network of government oversight with a specific emphasis the relationship between executive branch agencies, Congress, and experts in improving accountability and performance. In addition, my research considers the challenges and consequences of program implementation in an intergovernmental context and how oversight affects performance in these contexts. My work has been published in Policy Studies Journal.

A copy of my CV is available here.


  • Government oversight and accountability
  • Public management and administration
  • Executive politics and public policy


  • PhD, Political Science, 2020

    University of Missouri

  • BS, Political Science, 2015

    Black Hills State University



2019. “ Taking Time (and Space) Seriously: How Scholars Falsely Infer Policy Diffusion from Model Misspecification.” (with Christopher Gandrud and Laron K. Williams), Policy Studies Journal

PDF Replication Archive

Scholars have long been interested in how policies and ideas spread from one observation to another. Yet, the spatial and temporal dynamics of policy diffusion present unique challenges that empirical researchers often neglect. Scholars often use temporally lagged spatial lags (TLSL)—such as the number (or percentage) of prior adopters in a neighborhood—to test various mechanisms of delayed policy diffusion but are largely unaware of two under appreciated issues. First, the effects are not limited to one time period but persist over time by changing the future value of neighboring observations. Second, minor, yet common, choices in model specification—such as omitting spatially correlated and/or autoregressive covariates—can increase the risk of falsely inferring that the outcome is a result of spatial diffusion. Indeed, we offer two applications where small changes to the model specification of an otherwise well‐specified model result in drastically different inferences about policy diffusion. We argue that scholars should avoid haphazardly including TLSLs without considerable theoretical justification, and we conclude on an optimistic note by offering straightforward solutions and new software to address these issues.

Under Review

“The Importance of Agency and Oversight Capacity in Enhancing Accountability in Policy Implementation” with Lael R. Keiser

  • Resubmitted at Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory

“Watchdog or Partisan Pawn? Agenda Setting and Government Accountability Office Oversight”

“Under Pressure: Centralizing Regulation in Response to Presidential Directives” with Jennifer Selin, Hanna Brant, Nicholas Brothers, and Jordan Butcher

“The Impact of Chinese Investments on Public Opinion in Latin America” with Adriana Boersner and Michael Hendricks

Works in Progress

“Diversity in OIG Monitoring: The Role of Structure, Resources, and Political Environment”

“Society of Deputies: The Negative Externalities of Coproduction” with Nicholas Brothers

“Politicization and Bureaucratic Resistance to External Oversight”

“Is Oversight Always Effective? Goal Displacement and External Pressure”



  • POLI-797 | Intergovernmental Relations | UofSC | Fall 2020

  • POLI-374 | Public Policy | UofSC | Fall 2020

  • POLSC-1100 | American Government | Mizzou | Fall 2019

Lab Instructor

  • POLSC-3000 | Introduction to Political Research | Mizzou | Fall 2016

Graduate Workshops