Joshua D. Ambrosius

Assistant Professor
Full-Time Faculty
College of Arts and Sciences: Political Science, Master of Public Administration


Joshua D. Ambrosius, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Dayton and a core faculty member in the Master of Public Administration (MPA) program.  He is also a Senior Research Fellow with the Center for Sustainable Urban Neighborhoods at the University of Louisville. He previously taught at the Johns Hopkins University, the University of Louisville, and West Virginia State University and served as the Director of the Judith A. Herndon Fellowship for the West Virginia Legislature. He received his Ph.D. in public policy and administration from the School of Urban and Public Affairs at the University of Louisville. He previously received a Master of Public Policy degree and a Certificate of Nonprofit Studies from the Johns Hopkins University's Institute for Policy Studies in Baltimore, MD. His B.A. in political science is from York College of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Ambrosius’ work is motivated by an overarching desire for long-term human sustainability. His policy interests include urban and housing policy, faith-based social policy, and space exploration. His research specifically explores urban and regional governance, housing markets and policy, and religious preferences for institutional design.  His peer-reviewed academic work has appeared in the Journal of Urban Affairs, the American Review of Public Administration, Housing Policy Debate, Journal of Urbanism, and the Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion. He has varied experience conducting survey research for a National Science Foundation grant; directing legislative and administrative internships, on and off-campus; evaluating government programs for the U.S. Department of Labor; working on the federal Faith-Based & Community Initiative; organizing for positive development in Baltimore’s impoverished and neglected central city neighborhoods; creating a nonprofit coalition and organization from scratch; lobbying the Maryland General Assembly for safe housing laws; and serving the poor of Haiti. He blogs on matters of religion and politics for the website Red Letter Christians.

Visit Red Letter Christians (www) >>


  • Ph.D., University of Louisville
  • M.A., Johns Hopkins University
  • B.A., York College of Pennsylvania

Courses Taught

  • Introduction to Public Administration
  • Public Sector Human Resource Management

Research Interests

  • Contemporary housing market dynamics in metropolitan areas
  • The governance of mid-sized urban regions
  • Effects of religious structures on policy preferences and organizational attitudes

Selected Publications

Ambrosius, J. (2013), "City of Clayton Ward Boundary Study Report and Recommendations" (pp. 8). Clayton, OH: City of Clayton.

Ambrosius, J. (2013), James K. Wellman Jr., "Rob Bell and a New American Christianity" (vol. 55, pp. 647-649). Hartford, CT: Review of Religious Research.

Ambrosius, J. (2012), "Did Christmas Come Early for Urban Democrats?" (pp. A17). Dayton, OH: Dayton Daily News.

Gilderbloom, J. I., Ambrosius, J., Squires, G. D., Hanka, M. J., Kenitzer, Z. E. (2012). "Investors: The Missing Piece in the Foreclosure Racial Gap Debate." Journal of Urban Affairs, 34(5), 559-582.

Gilderbloom, J. I., Hanka, M. J., & Ambrosius, J. D. (2012). "Without bias? Government policy that creates fair and equitable property tax assessments." American Review of Public Administration, 42(5), 591-605.

Ambrosius, J. D. (2011). "Religion, politics, and polity replication: Religious differences in preferences for institutional design." Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion, 7(9), 1-35.

Ambrosius, J. D., Gilderbloom, J. I., & Hanka, M. J. (2010). "Back to black…and green? Location and policy interventions in contemporary neighborhood housing markets." Housing Policy Debate, 20(3), 457-484.

Gilderbloom, J. I., Hanka, M. J., & Ambrosius, J. D. (2009). "Historic preservation’s impact on job creation, property values, and environmental sustainability." Journal of Urbanism, 2(2), 83-101.

Ambrosius, J. D. (2009). "Why urbanists need religion." Urban News: Newsletter of the Urban Politics Section of the American Political Science Association, 23(1), 2-6.

Professional Activities

  • Urban Affairs Association
  • Urban Politics & Religion and Politics Sections, American Political Science Association
  • Association for the Study of Religion, Economics, and Culture

Media Expertise

  • Urban affairs
  • Housing markets
  • Religion and politics
  • Government
  • Politics
  • Election 2012