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2021 News


Kevin Mazur | Revolution in Syria: Identity, Networks, and Repression (Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics)

July 31, 2021 – from Cambridge University Press
How does protest advancing diverse claims turn into violent conflict occurring primarily along ethnic lines? This book examines that question in the context of Syria, drawing insight from the evolution of conflict at the local level. Kevin Mazur shows that the challenge to the Syrian regime did not erupt neatly along ethnic boundaries, and that lines of access to state-controlled resources played a critical structuring role; the ethnicization of conflict resulted from failed incumbent efforts to shore up network ties and the violence that the Asad regime used to crush dissent by challengers excluded from those networks. Mazur uses variation in the political and demographic characteristics of locales to explain regime strategies, the roles played by local intermediaries, the choice between non-violent and violent resistance, and the salience of ethnicity.

Hendrik Spruyt | Co-winner, 2021 ENMISA Distinguished Book Award, International Studies Association

July 30, 2021 – from Cambridge University Press
Taking an inter-disciplinary approach, Spruyt explains the political organization of three non-European international societies from early modernity to the late nineteenth century. The Ottoman, Safavid and Mughal empires; the Sinocentric tributary system; and the Southeast Asian galactic empires, all which differed in key respects from the modern Westphalian state system. In each of these societies, collective beliefs were critical in structuring domestic orders and relations with other polities. These multi-ethnic empires allowed for greater accommodation and heterogeneity in comparison to the homogeneity that is demanded by the modern nation-state.

Swati Srivastava | Dr. Swati Srivastava Awarded NEH Summer Stipend

July 30, 2021 – from Purdue University Department News
According to Srivastava, the project is guided by two questions: “What are the major political harms (e.g., mass surveillance and behavior modification) related to Big Tech?” and “How well does regulation (e.g., government law suits and public hearings) around the world remedy those harms?”

Kevin Mazur | Revolution in Syria

July 1, 2021 – from Identity, Networks and Repression
How does protest advancing diverse claims turn into violent conflict occurring primarily along ethnic lines? This book examines that question in the context of Syria, drawing insight from the evolution of conflict at the local level. Kevin Mazur shows that the challenge to the Syrian regime did not erupt neatly along ethnic boundaries, and that lines of access to state-controlled resources played a critical structuring role; the ethnicization of conflict resulted from failed incumbent efforts to shore up network ties and the violence that the Asad regime used to crush dissent by challengers excluded from those networks. Mazur uses variation in the political and demographic characteristics of locales to explain regime strategies, the roles played by local intermediaries, the choice between non-violent and violent resistance, and the salience of ethnicity.

Laura Garcia-Montoya, James Mahoney | Critical Event Analysis in Case Study Research

July 8, 2020 – from Sage Journals
This article develops a framework for the causal analysis of critical events in case study research. A critical event is defined as a contingent event that is causally important for an outcome in a specific case. Using set-theoretic analysis, this article offers definitions and measurement tools for the study of contingency and causal importance in case study research. One set of tools consists of guidelines for using theoretical expectations to arrive at conclusions about the level of contingency of events. Another set of tools are guidelines for using counterfactual cases to determine the extent to which a given event is necessary and sufficient for a particular outcome in an individual case. Examples from comparative and international studies are used to illustrate the framework.


Ari Shaw | National Security & Foreign Policy LGBTQIA+ 2021 Out Leaders List

June 11, 2021 – from Out in National Security
We applaud the work our national security enterprise is doing to build on LGBTQIA+ presence and voices in our own institutions, and to advance LGBTQIA+ rights here and abroad. As President Biden proclaimed, “This Pride Month, we affirm our obligation to uphold the dignity of all people, and dedicate ourselves to protecting the most vulnerable among us.” We are happy that our honorees have already done so much to affirm this obligation, and we acknowledge that these efforts too often are overlooked or unnoticed. So, we hope you’ll join us this year by reviewing this stellar lineup of individuals and recognize their hard work with us, especially as we celebrate Pride Month.

Matthew Nelsen (TGS PhD) | Best Dissertation Award from the APSA Political Psychology Section

June 11, 2021 – from American Political Science Association
The committee is enthusiastic in awarding Nelsen this prize. Nelsen asks an important, yet understudied question: how do schools shape the political lives of young citizens? In particular, he brings a careful lens to a question that could not be more timely: how does civic education matter in affecting how students, across racial groups, engage and make sense of politics. Pushing against work that claims that the content of civics education doesn't matter, Nelsen's multi-method (lab-in-the-field, focus groups, interviews, content analysis, extensive survey work) project showcases how critical pedagogy-a civics education that centers the lived experiences and voices of marginalized communities-can positively influence how young people of color feel about politics and their place in it. The theoretical and methodological work of the dissertation is first-rate and impressive.

Jordan Gans-Morse | Public Service Motivation as a Predictor of Corruption, Dishonesty, and Altruism

June 9, 2021 – from Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory
Understanding how Public Service Motivation (PSM) is tied to ethical or unethical conduct is critically important, given that civil servants and other public sector employees throughout the world have been shown to exhibit high PSM levels. However, empirical evidence about the relationship between PSM and ethical or unethical behavior remains limited, due in part to the challenges of observing unethical conduct and overcoming social desirability bias in self-reported measures. We address these challenges by employing incentivized experimental games to study the relationships between PSM and two types of unethical behavior – corruption and dishonesty – as well as one type of ethical behavior: altruism.

Diego Rossello (TGS PhD) | The animal condition in the human condition: Rethinking Arendt’s political action beyond the human species

June 8, 2021 – from Contemporary Political Theory
This article puts Arendt’s conception of non-human animal appearance into a productive dialogue with recent developments in critical animal studies (CAS) and animal rights theory (ART) within which notions such as (dependent) agency, zoopolis, and animal agora play an important role. By reinterpreting the animal condition in Arendt’s account of the human condition, it demonstrates her potential contribution to political theory in a world where non-human-animals and nature are seen as making claims of entry into the political community.

Laurel Harbridge-Yong | Biden’s Extended Dance With Republicans May Be What the Public Wants

June 4, 2021 – from Intelligencer
According to a 2014 study by political scientists Laurel Harbridge, Neil Malhotra, and Brian F. Harrison, respondents preferred legislation when their party got more of what it wanted and when it dominated the coalition that passed the bill versus the outcomes that were more bipartisan-oriented. In fact, respondents sometimes viewed bipartisan tradeoffs as the equivalent of a legislative defeat for their party.

Kimberly Marion Suiseeya | Northwestern Buffett Global Working Group Tackling Environmental Challenges in Marginalized Communities

June 4, 2021 – from Buffett Institute for Global Affairs
“Often, solutions to climate change and other environmental challenges can inadvertently produce new injustices for marginalized communities, so we are excited to have an opportunity for the kind of slow relationship-building that is needed to come together with these community leaders to co-create an ethos for relationship-driven research that not only tackles current injustices and environmental challenges, but creates a new trajectory for environmental research that prevents similar injustices in the future,” said Suiseeya.

Mneesha Gellman | El Salvador’s façade of democracy crumbles as president purges his political opponents

June 4, 2021 – from The Conversation
El Salvador struggled through centuries of Spanish colonization before becoming an independent state in 1821, followed by economic manipulation and the concentration of land in the hands of wealthy elites. In 1980, civil war began. Leftist revolutionaries of the Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front – FMLN in its Spanish acronym – attempted to overthrow the country’s U.S.-backed dictatorial and corrupt government. The war lasted until 1992 and killed 75,000 Salvadorans.

Elizabeth Shakman Hurd | Freedom, Salvation, Redemption

June 1, 2021 – from Berghahn Journals
The politics of religious asylum is ripe for reassessment. Even as a robust literature on secularism and religion has shown otherwise over the past two decades, much of the discussion in this field presumes that religion stands cleanly apart from law and politics. This article makes the case for a different approach to religion in the context of asylum-seeking and claiming. In the United States, it suggests, the politics of asylum is integral to the maintenance of American exceptionalism. Participants in the asylum-seeking process create a gap between Americans and others, affirming the promise of freedom, salvation, and redemption through conversion not to a particular religion or faith but to the American project itself. This hails a particular kind of subject of freed om and unencumbered choice. It is both a theological and a political process.


James Druckman | The role of race, religion, and partisanship in misperceptions about COVID-19

May 31, 2021 – from Group Processes & Intergroup Relations (SAGE Journals)
Concerns about misperceptions among the public are rampant. Yet, little work explores the correlates of misperceptions in varying contexts – that is, how do factors such as group affiliations, media exposure, and lived experiences correlate with the number of misperceptions people hold? We address these questions by investigating misperceptions about COVID-19, focusing on the role of racial/ethnic, religious, and partisan groups. Using a large survey, we find the number of correct beliefs held by individuals far dwarfs the number of misperceptions. When it comes to misperceptions, we find that minorities, those with high levels of religiosity, and those with strong partisan identities – across parties – hold a substantially greater number of misperceptions than those with contrasting group affiliations. Moreover, we show other variables (e.g., social media usage, number of COVID-19 cases

Hendrik Spruyt | Co-winner, 2021 J. David Greenstone Book Prize, American Political Science Association

May 29, 2021 – from Cambridge University Press
Taking an inter-disciplinary approach, Spruyt explains the political organization of three non-European international societies from early modernity to the late nineteenth century. The Ottoman, Safavid and Mughal empires; the Sinocentric tributary system; and the Southeast Asian galactic empires, all which differed in key respects from the modern Westphalian state system. In each of these societies, collective beliefs were critical in structuring domestic orders and relations with other polities. These multi-ethnic empires allowed for greater accommodation and heterogeneity in comparison to the homogeneity that is demanded by the modern nation-state.

Ian Hurd & Kimberly Marion Suiseeya | The Justice Gap in Global Forest Governance — A Conversation with Kim Marion Suiseeya

May 28, 2021 – from Global Lunchbox Podcast
This episode of the Global Lunchbox podcast features a conversation with political scientist Kim Marion Suiseeya about her current research on the justice gap in global forest governance. Marion Suiseeya is Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science at Northwestern University, where she is also affiliated with the Environmental Policy and Culture Program and the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research. Her research examines the interactions between norms, institutions, and justice in global forest governance.

Chloe Thurston | Breaking New Ground on Fair Housing?

May 28, 2021 – from Institute for Policy Research
"Thurston points to Los Angeles as one city that has struggled to control the virus because of overcrowding. “One of the reasons that their cases went so high, so quickly was the affordability crisis in the region,” Thurston said. “Many families were living in more crowded settings and in work situations where they couldn't really protect themselves from COVID-19.” She said President Biden’s proposal to tie federal funding to cities who ease restrictions on zoning is an intriguing policy that could help increase affordable housing and address historic exclusions. “Local zoning policies and ordinances are one of the contributors to the lack of affordable housing in many communities,” Thurston said. They limit multifamily housing units, making these communities unaffordable."

Mary McGrath | In Focus: Women Faculty Continue to Ask the University for Support Following the Tenure Clock Extension’s End

May 27, 2021 – from Daily Northwestern
Political science Prof. Mary McGrath faced increased at-home caregiving expectations in addition to her academic responsibilities. Instead of focusing on conducting research or publishing articles, she was taking care of her children, then ages 2 and 4, while her husband self-isolated due to health concerns from his kidney transplant. “It was like me and my two boys thrashing in these waves,” she said. “I didn’t know what else was going on in the world, except from seeing what was happening in The New York Times.”

Swati Srivastava (TGS PhD) | H-Diplo Review Essay 345- "Outsourcing Empire"

May 26, 2021 – from Humanities and Social Sciences Discussion Online
Outsourcing Empire may be considered a sequel to the authors’ previous book, International Order in Diversity: War, Trade and Rule in the Indian Ocean.[2] In that work, Phillips and Sharman situated the company-states, primarily the Estado, EIC, and VOC, alongside other diverse vessels of international ordering in Asia like the Mughal Empire and the Marathas. Outsourcing Empire focuses entirely on company-states and widens the regional scope to include the Atlantic. This is an ambitious and welcome follow-up. The inclusion of more cases beyond Asia allows for a comparative investigation to complement recent company-state histories.[3] While the authors re-trace some of their earlier work when describing the rise and fall of the EIC and VOC, they bring new material to light in studying the arcs of the HBC and the African companies.

Jesse Humpal (TGS PhD) | U.S. Air Force pilot finds success on the shoulders of others — and connection through his viral tweet.

May 26, 2021 – from Northwestern Magazine
“I felt like an outsider my entire life, and it’s the people who were accepting who made the difference for me.” As a child, Jesse Humpal ’15 MA, ’20 MA, ’21 PhD drifted in and out of special education classes. He almost failed out of his undergraduate program at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, and at Northwestern he almost threw in the towel on higher education entirely during a course on linear regression. But Humpal persevered and defended his dissertation on April 30. In June, Humpal will go to Fort Bragg Joint Special Operations Command in North Carolina, where he will develop training and strategy for special operations forces. And in the fall of 2022 Humpal will face a new challenge as an assistant professor of political science at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs."

Laura Garcia Montoya (TGS PhD) | What Is Happening in Colombia? A Conversation with Experts

May 24, 2021 – from International and Area Studies - U of U
For the past two weeks, Colombia has seen massive street demonstrations. Notwithstanding being overwhelmingly peaceful, the protests were met with violence. Domestic and international NGOs have reported at least 55 people dead and hundreds of people injured. Despite these numbers, people are still in the streets voicing grievances that vastly outweigh the tax reform that originally sparked the demonstrations. In this conversation, we will discuss the underlying problems that have led people to protests in Colombia, the government’s response to these (and other) mobilizations, and the potential pathways that all the actors involved could take to start resolving the conflict.

Jordan Gans-Morse | Would You Sell Your Vote?

May 24, 2021 – from American Politics Research (SAGE Journals)
"Prominent scholars in recent years have expressed alarm about political polarization, weakened civil liberties, and growing support for authoritarianism in the United States. But discussions of democratic backsliding pay short shrift to the value citizens place on one of the most fundamental democratic institutions: the act of voting."

Chloe Thurston | America’s Voucher Politics: How Elites Learned to Hide the State by Ursula Hackett

May 21, 2021 – from Cambridge University Press
School voucher programs—loosely defined to encompass a range of policies that indirectly subsidize private school attendance—grew slowly over the second half of the twentieth century, seeing a modest but short-lived rise in the decades following Brown v. Board. It was not until the 2000s that vouchers took off. In 2000 there were a total of eight such programs. Yet by 2019, there were 62, across 28 states, serving more than 500,000 students. As vouchers rose in prominence over the last 20 years, core design features of the new policies also changed, shifting from tuition grants funded through legislative appropriations toward a model more reliant on indirect subsidies through the use of tax expenditures.

Julieta Suárez-Cao | All the good things that parity brought

May 19, 2021 – from Cipher
"At one time, Chilean politicians and political scientists toured universities around the world talking about the benefits of the Transition. Today our battered and questioned democracy has once again been put in the vanguard thanks to the joint mechanism. In these columns, two political scientists from the team that designed the mechanism and promoted it in Congress explain how parity redrew the political arena. "Women have enormous challenges and a great deal is expected of them," write the authors. They urge to extend the mechanism to all elections, because where there was no obligation of parity, women did not reach the lists. “For mayoralties, only 22.6% of the candidacies correspond to women; the figure rises to 39% for councilors ”, they describe."

Daniel J. Galvin & Jason Seawright | Surprising Causes: Propensity-adjusted Treatment Scores for Multimethod Case Selection

May 19, 2021 – from Journal of Sociological Methods & Research
"Scholarship on multimethod case selection in the social sciences has developed rapidly in recent years, but many possibilities remain unexplored. This essay introduces an attractive and advantageous new alternative, involving the selection of extreme cases on the treatment variable, net of the statistical influence of the set of known control variables. Cases that are extreme in this way are those in which the value of the main causal variable is as surprising as possible, and thus, this approach can be referred to as seeking “surprising causes.” There are practical advantages to selecting on surprising causes, and there are also advantages in terms of statistical efficiency in facilitating case-study discovery. We first argue for these advantages in general terms and then demonstrate them in an application regarding the dynamics of U.S. labor legislation."

Karen J. Alter | From Colonial to Multilateral International Law: A Global Capitalism and Law Investigation

May 17, 2021 – from SSRN
This Forward integrates international law, international relations, and global history scholarship to understand two global trends that are in tension with each other: 1) the shift from European colonial dominance to a law-based multilateralism, which enabled a more equal and inclusive international law and 2) global capitalism which across time has been a political and economic force that, left to its own devices, promotes exclusion and inequality. Alter builds an encompassing conception of global economic law to show the interplay of colonial law, private law, domestic law and international law in enabling and constraining global capitalism across time.

Julieta Suárez-Cao | Chileans Vote Against Traditional Politicians and Demand Substantial Reforms

May 17, 2021 – from MercoPress
Contrary to what the polls predicted and with a proportional counting system that favours major political parties over smaller ones, the independents achieved an unprecedented result and will be the leading force at the convention. The independent candidates include feminists, environmentalists and other reform-prone groups. ”The independents obtained a great result but the biggest surprise is the absolute collapse of the right-wing that, despite going on a unified list, they did not achieve their goals,” analyst Julieta Suárez-Cao was quoted as saying by the Spanish news agency EFE.

Julieta Suarez-Cao | Chile's Women Shine in Constitution Vote as More Men Need Leg-up to Stay Even

May 17, 2021 – from Reuters
The requirement for gender parity forced political groups to look for competitive female candidates, Julieta Suarez-Cao, an academic at the Catholic University's Political Science Institute, told the Diario Financiero newspaper. "This shows Chile is not a macho country, that if you find the competitive and good candidates - and there are many - people will vote for them," she said.

Julieta Suárez-Cao (TGS PhD) |

May 15, 2021 – from The Loop by ECPR
"Chile’s constitutional reform started after massive social protests in 2019. With gender parity, reserved seats for indigenous people, and a significant number of seats for independent delegates, Julieta Suárez-Cao argues that the country's assembly is on track to rebuild democratic legitimacy in the years to come Over the weekend of 15 May, Chileans went to the polls to elect delegates to a constitutional assembly. The assembly will draft the document that will replace Dictator Augusto Pinochet’s constitution. Reform follows a social uprising in October 2019 that sparked weeks of peaceful demonstrations and cacerolazos (pot banging). The uprising also resulted in barricades, looting, and riots."

Laurel Harbridge-Yong & Stephen Nelson | Provost Faculty Grant for Research in Humanities, Social Sciences and the Arts

May 15, 2021 – from Northwestern Office of the Provost
Laurel Harbridge-Yong, Associate Professor, Political Science, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences – “The Polarizing Effects of Primaries” Stephen Nelson, Associate Professor, Political Science, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences – “Best Laid Plans: The Political History of Economic Development Plans, 1950-2000”

Bailey R. Fairbanks, Fabian G. Neuner, Isabel M. Perera & Christine M. Slaughter | Pay to Play? How Reducing APSA Division Fees Increases Graduate Student Participation

May 14, 2021 – from Cambridge University Press
In 2017, the American Political Science Association (APSA) Committee on the Status of Graduate Students in the Profession launched an initiative to lower the cost of Division (i.e., organized section) membership for students to promote graduate students’ professional development and to advance Division interests. This article assesses the effect of this intervention on Division membership. Using APSA membership data, we find that almost two thirds of Divisions that charged fees in 2017 reduced or eliminated student fees between 2017 and 2019, nearly halving the average student dues (i.e., from $11.57 in 2017 to $5.84 in 2019).

Samir Mayekar | Samir Mayekar Will Offer the 2021 Convocation Address to Weinberg College Graduates

May 12, 2021 – from Northwestern Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences
Mayekar’s path is one he never anticipated as a political science major at Weinberg College, but one that emerged as he learned about himself and the world. After graduating from Northwestern in 2006, Mayekar took a consulting job at Marakon Associates. Two years later, he left that role to join Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign. “President Obama’s platform was something I believed in,” says Mayekar, who as budget manager helped raise nearly $900 million for Obama’s first presidential bid. The part he relished most was working with a cohesive, enthusiastic team that lived by the motto “Respect, Empower and Include.”

Ernesto Calvo | Kenneth Janda vs. the midterm elections

May 10, 2021 – from Elestadista
In September 1994, my first PhD semester in the United States, I had the pleasure of taking classes with Kenneth Janda, Professor of Comparative Politics known for his work on the structure and organization of Political Parties. The seminar took place the semester in which Bill Clinton's first midterm elections were held, haunted by a bad economy and furiously resisted by the Democratic base.

Elizabeth Shakman Hurd | Several female Northwestern faculty members plan to protest promotion of athletics department employee

May 6, 2021 – from Fox 32 Chicago
Several female Northwestern faculty members are planning to protest the promotion of an athletics department employee tied to controversy. Mike Polisky is taking over as Athletic Director. He's a defendant in an ongoing lawsuit filed by a cheerleader who says Polisky ignored her complaints of being harassed and exploited at school-sanctioned events.

Sally A. Nuamah | 2021 Marilyn J. Gittell Activist Scholar Award

May 4, 2021 – from Urban Affairs Association
This year, Dr. Sally Nuamah (Northwestern University) was selected as the recipient of the 2021 Marilyn J. Gittell Activist Scholar Award. This award was established to highlight field-based urban scholarship and promote the dissemination of work by activist urban scholars. The award is co-sponsored by SAGE Publishing and UAA. The inspiration for this award is the career of Dr. Marilyn J. Gittell, former Director of the Howard Samuels Center and Professor of Political Science at The Graduate School at City University of New York. Dr. Gittell was an outstanding scholar and a community activist who wrote seminal works on citizen participation, and was founding editor of Urban Affairs Quarterly, (now known as Urban Affairs Review). Thus, the award seeks to honor the contributions of a scholar whose research record shows a direct relationship between activism, scholarship, and engagement wit

Daniel Galvin | How companies rip off poor employees — and get away with it

May 4, 2021 – from AP News
Companies are more prone to cheating employees of color and immigrant workers, according to Daniel Galvin, a political science professor and policy researcher at Northwestern University. His research, based on data from the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey, shows that immigrants and Latino workers were twice as likely to earn less than the minimum wage from 2009 to 2019 compared with white Americans. Black workers were nearly 50% more likely to get ripped off in comparison.

Arturo Chang & Kumar Ramanathan | Some graduate students report impact of pauses to in-person research, one year after NUGW May Day sit-in

May 2, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
Chang, whose research is archive-based, said he has been affected by travel restrictions and archive closures. His dissertation on Indigenous and Black insurgency movements requires traveling to Latin America but his travel plans were canceled because of the pandemic. Ph.D. candidate Kumar Ramanathan said certain kinds of research are more challenging to conduct remotely. Similar to Chang, primary source documents play an important role in his dissertation on the construction of a civil rights agenda in the United States from 1940s to 1960s.

Chloe Thurston | How Do People Make Change?

May 1, 2021 – from Northwestern Magazine
Political science assistant professor Chloe Thurston, who studies the role of social movements and organizations in shaping policy, says movements can spotlight individual grievances, increase their visibility and then connect them to a broader context.


Julieta Suárez-Cao | From the national or the local? The path of women to Congress in the Andean region and Chile

April 30, 2021 – from Barcelona Center for International Affairs
This article analyzes the political trajectories of female congresswomen in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Chile between 2009 and 2016. Their trajectories are classified according to their previous experience and the territorial levels where they won elections before entering Congress, these may be newcomers or professionals. The professionals had previous political experience, either at the national or sub-national level, including re-elected (incumbents). Despite the different institutional designs of each country, for the vast majority, the first position they held in politics was at the national level, in Congress (novices). Among the professionals and incumbents, for Chile, Ecuador and Peru most of the congresswomen began their career at the national level, while in Colombia and Bolivia they began at the subnational level.

Kumar Ramanathan | The Civil Rights Origins of “Family and Medical Leave”

April 29, 2021 – from Medium
"This week, congressional Democrats and the Biden administration announced a paid family and medical leave proposal as part of an expansive plan to remake social policy in the United States. The plan, which builds on proposals supported by a broad coalition of advocacy organizations, would provide 12 weeks of paid leave to workers who are ill, pregnant, new parents, or caregivers for ill family members. As advocates, scholars, and journalists often point out, the United States is the only industrialized country which does not guarantee paid maternity leave. This plan would finally bring the US in line with other countries."

Monique Newton | When are Police Aggressive — And When Are They Respectful — Toward Black Lives Matter Protesters?

April 28, 2021 – from The Washington Post
On April 20, Americans waited for the jury’s verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis police officer who killed George Floyd last year. Local officials across the country, including in Minneapolis, prepared for a not-guilty verdict that could set off angry protests. Governors deployed the National Guard to support city police. In a message to potential protesters, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said at a news conference right before the verdict: “Don’t test us. We are prepared.”

Kim Suiseeya & Diana Elhard | Toward a Relational Approach in Global Climate Governance: Exploring the Role of Trust

April 27, 2021 – from Early View
"What role does trust play in global climate governance? For decades, claims of mistrust and distrust have dominated climate change policy arenas: doubts about climate change science and disagreements over rights and responsibilities related to mitigation, adaptation, loss, and damages undermine trust, impeding progress toward effective global climate action. And although frequently invoked in explanations of weak or failed climate action, there is limited research exploring the role of trust as a distinct concept in global climate governance. Here we seek to address this gap by developing a relational framework that focuses attention on how trust dynamics shape cooperation in four types of relationships: reliance, reciprocity, responsibility, and recognition."

Lucien Ferguson | Graduate Franke Fellows

April 26, 2021 – from Alice Kaplan Institute for the Humanities
Congratulations to the new cohort of Graduate Franke Fellows for 2021-2022! "My dissertation examines how caste discourse shaped the development of civil rights law and politics in the U.S. during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. I argue that Black and abolitionist activists used caste language to critique forms of racial subjugation, to imagine solidaristic, post-caste futures, and to theorize novel legal and political strategies for their realization."

Julie Lee Merseth | PGI Micro-syllabus on Asian American Politics

April 24, 2021 – from Politics, Groups, and Identities
At a time when some talk of Asian Americans as “honorary whites,” the mass murders at Atlanta-area spas reminded us that those of Asian ancestry can also experience intense marginalization. This micro-syllabus presents a wide range of scholarship exploring these complexities and investigating the place of Asian and Pacific Islander Americans in a deeply contested racial terrain.

Alvin B. Tillery Jr. | From Civil Rights to Racial Justice: Understanding African-American Social Justice Movements

April 23, 2021 – from U.S. Department of State
The Summer of 2020 saw the United States’ biggest protests for racial justice and civil rights in a generation, when deaths of African Americans in police custody brought a national reckoning with systemic racism. As we near the one year anniversary of some of the largest demonstrations in U.S. history, Dr. Alvin Tillery, Associate Professor of Political Science at Northwestern University, discusses: what the recent verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial means for racial equity in the United States, how current racial justice movements, like Black Lives Matter, fit within the broader history of the U.S. civil rights movement, and how today’s efforts differ from past American racial justice initiatives.

Kumar Ramanathan | From Civil Rights to Social Policy: The Political Development of Family and Medical Leave Policy

April 21, 2021 – from Studies in American Political Development
Family and medical leave policy in the United States is often noted for its lack of wage compensation, but is also distinctive in its gender neutrality and its broad coverage of several types of leave (combining pregnancy leave with medical, parental, and caregiving leave). This article argues that the distinctive design of leave policy in the United States is explained by its origins in contestation over the civil rights policy regime that emerged in the 1960s. In the early 1970s, women's movement advocates creatively and strategically formulated demands for maternity leave provision that fit an interpretation of this new policy regime's antidiscrimination logic. Because of this decision to advance an antidiscrimination claim, advocates became committed to pursuing a leave guarantee on gender-neutral grounds, which in turn enabled the broad-coverage leave design.

Jeff Rice | Rice: Does Northwestern Administration Have Solutions Besides Bromides?

April 20, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
"Thoughts and prayers. Psychological counseling. Promises of reform. We’re far too familiar with these phrases and ideas, but they aren’t proof of tangible change. These are bromides — statements intended to placate us with the hope of improvement — but they’re not solutions. Can they be well-intentioned? Yes. Can they help? Potentially. But will they make bad things better? Not likely."

Scott Greer | How Countries on Five Continents Responded to the Pandemic, Helping Shape Future of Health Policy

April 19, 2021 – from The University of Michigan
UM professors Scott Greer and Elizabeth King and colleagues in Brazil analyzed early government responses from 34 countries on five continents to the emerging COVID-19 pandemic and how those decisions impacted their citizens’ health and lives. They brought together a team of about 70 public health researchers and political scientists who dove into understanding policy and politics to measure the effectiveness of governments’ responses—instead of looking at classical data like the number of deaths and the contagion curve of the disease.

Ian Hurd & Amy Stanley | Confronting Denialism on the "Comfort Woman" Issue (Amy Stanley, David Ambaras, Hannah Shepherd)

April 16, 2021 – from The Global Lunchbox Podcast
This episode of the Global Lunchbox features a conversation with three historians about how they pushed back on a controversial article that trafficked in historical denialism. Recently, an academic article on "comfort women" by the Harvard Law School professor Mark Ramseyer caused a huge controversy and inspired a wave of condemnation. Contrary to decades of historical research, Ramseyer claimed that the Korean women who were conscripted, trafficked, and held captive at brothels serving the Japanese military during the Pacific War were in fact well-compensated sex workers subject to standard contractual arrangements. Amy Stanley of Northwestern, David Ambaras of North Carolina State University, and Hannah Shepherd of the University of Cambridge, together with two other scholars, formed a transnational network to analyze and deconstruct Ramseyer's work.

Alvin B. Tillery Jr. | The Performance of Power: Black Lives Matter and American Democracy

April 16, 2021 – from Simon Fraser University
The Simon Fraser University Department of Political Science is proud to present Professor Alvin Bernard Tillery, Jr. of Northwestern University, who will be giving a virtual talk on "The Performance of Power: Black Lives Matter and American Democracy." This free, online event will take place on April 16th at 10 a.m. PT.

Karen Alter | Faculty Senate Discusses Lost Pension Funds, Propose Audit of University Finances

April 15, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
"Weinberg Prof. Karen Alter raised the prospect of bringing in a third party to perform a financial audit to verify the Board of Trustees’ position on retirement contributions and clarify the underpinnings of Northwestern’s financial decisions. “It just gives you that set of information,” she said. “It doesn’t then say that the money has to go into restitution for faculty, it can’t go into this—it tells you how much money you have, how much money existed or was available. Alter said faculty at Johns Hopkins University were able to attain pension restitution due to insight about the university’s finances uncovered by an independent audit."

Daniel Encinas | Peru Caught Between Two Evils

April 15, 2021 – from The New York Times
Pedro Castillo and Keiko Fujimori will compete in the second electoral round for the presidency. Both are conservatives and with dubious democratic credentials. What solutions are there to this bleak outlook?

Christa Kuntzelman | PhD Christa Kuntzelman Accepted into the Scholars Strategy Network

April 15, 2021 – from Scholars Strategy Network
Kuntzelman's doctoral research examines variation in political knowledge of rights, responsibilities, restrictions, and governance actors and processes among urban refugees in Uganda. Kuntzelman's research overall, intersects with studies of refugees as protection and service providers, the roles of refugee-led organizations that serve their fellow displaced, and African politics. Kuntzelman has extensive experience beyond research, as an advocate to unaccompanied minors seeking asylum, as well as work for family reconnection and reunification with the Red Cross. Kuntzelman also has extensive mentorship experience to undergraduate students.

James N. Druckman | More COVID State Shutdowns Unlikely, Despite CDC Suggestion

April 14, 2021 – from AP News
That means governors must weigh what the public would be willing to do as they consider how to respond to a resurgence of cases fueled by the new variants, said James Druckman, a political science professor at Northwestern University in Illinois who is part of the survey consortium. “It’s unrealistic to engage in complete shutdowns or closing of public spaces at this point,” he said. “I think you’d see a lot of people, including business owners, not following those types of things.”

Zekeria Ould Ahmed Salem | The Importance of Mauritanian Scholars in Global Islam

April 13, 2021 – from MERIP
On August 13, 2020 the US government proudly announced what it called a peace agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). While then President Donald Trump’s administration heralded the deal as a decisive step toward lasting peace in the Middle East, the announcement sent shock waves through Muslim communities around the world.

Ross E. Carroll | Uncivil Mirth: Ridicule in Enlightenment Britain

April 13, 2021 – from Princeton University Press
The relaxing of censorship in Britain at the turn of the eighteenth century led to an explosion of satires, caricatures, and comic hoaxes. This new vogue for ridicule unleashed moral panic and prompted warnings that it would corrupt public debate. But ridicule also had vocal defenders who saw it as a means to expose hypocrisy, unsettle the arrogant, and deflate the powerful. Uncivil Mirth examines how leading thinkers of the period searched for a humane form of ridicule, one that served the causes of religious toleration, the abolition of the slave trade, and the dismantling of patriarchal power.

Javier Burdman | “Sense of Injustice”: On the Role of Emotions in Epistemic Resistance

April 12, 2021 – from Vol. 6 (2020): Feelings of Resistance
"The recent literature on epistemic injustice has convincingly showed that injustice is often self-concealing, because those who suffer it lack the hermeneutical resources to talk about it. How, then, are the victims of epistemic injustice capable of denouncing and resisting it? My paper seeks an answer to this question by inquiring into what Judith Shklar calls the “sense of injustice.” Following Shklar, I argue that the identification and critique of injustice relies on feeling rather than established moral values. In order to clarify how feelings can be the source of universal claims, I turn to an interpretation of Kant’s analysis of the feeling of the sublime developed by Jean-François Lyotard. According to this interpretation, any act of communication generates a silence that calls to be expressed."

Kenny Allen | Allen and Gonring: How Police Hurt Everybody’s Mental Health

April 11, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
The prison-industrial complex, for which police are foot soldiers, is responsible for the current reality of mental health treatment in this country. Deinstitutionalization, a phenomenon that started in the 1950s, has served to rid our country of long-term mental health care options. According to NPR, private mental health hospitals can cost up to $30,000 per month, leaving those without the resources few alternatives. As these private hospitals do not accept insurance, low-income individuals seeking treatment must rely on Medicaid, but the federal government is not allowed to pay for long-term care in an institution.

Isabella Alcaniz | Closing the climate inequality gap

April 10, 2021 – from ScienceDirect
Climate inequality also shapes the limits of climate resilience (Sovacool 2018.). Scholars and activists in the field of environmental justice have been making this case for a long time (Konisky 2009; Mohai et al. 2009; Harrison 2014; Agyeman et al. 2016). The articles in this virtual special issue (VSI), a curated collection of case-studies and data-driven research that span the Global South and the Industrial North, make significant contributions to the study of climate change and environmental justice.

Brandon Rottinghaus | Gaetz, Cuomo, Trump: Do political scandals even matter any more?

April 9, 2021 – from The Washington Post
Scandals matter less in a polarized era Not surprisingly, scandals polarize the public. Yet even in the face of clear and undisputed charges, partisans backed Trump despite what critics say was evidence of illegal and “impeachable” activities. Even in cases involving serious charges of sexual harassment, Republican partisans do not strongly penalize their own candidates (although Democrats are more likely to penalize their own).

Alvin Bernard Tillery | Illinois town starts spending to address the racial divide

April 5, 2021 – from Financial Times
Focusing on housing, an area where the city can point to a clear history of racial discrimination, will make the programme more likely to survive the inevitable constitutional challenges, says Alvin Tillery, director of the Center for the Study of Diversity and Democracy at Northwestern University, also in Evanston. “Given the conservative jurisprudence around racial equity in America, governments are really constrained in terms of what they can do. Programmes have to be ‘narrowly tailored’ to meet the specific harm and in this case that harm is redlining,” he told the Financial Times in an interview.

Christa Kuntzelman | The Importance of Refugee Inclusion in Research Design

April 3, 2021 – from Scholars Strategy Network
Background United under the rallying call, “nothing about us without us,” refugees have demanded inclusion in global policy and decision-making processes that impact their rights, protections, and provision. Moreover, refugees demand direct representation and participation in the academic research that critically informs governance decisions and humanitarian responses to migration crises. Refugees have reiterated their demands at the regional and international levels- including at the inaugural 2019 Global Refugee Forum held in Geneva, Switzerland and at the 2019 inaugural Africa Refugee Leaders’ Summit held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Despite their advocacy efforts, refugees remain excluded from meaningful participation in academic and policy research, including in shaping the agenda for this research.


Yunkyo Kim | Professors discuss Black and White feminism at anti-racism speaker series

March 31, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
Purdue University Prof. Nadia Brown and Tulane University Prof. Mirya Holman presented theories of Black and White feminism within anti-racist movements in a Wednesday discussion. The event, hosted by the Center for the Study of Diversity and Democracy, was a part of the center’s Anti-Racism in Thought and Action Speaker and Discussion Series.

James N. Druckman | A New Era of Experimental Political Science

March 31, 2021 – from Cambridge University Press
Experimental political science has transformed in the last decade. The use of experiments has dramatically increased throughout the discipline, and technological and sociological changes have altered how political scientists use experiments. We chart the transformation of experiments and discuss new challenges that experimentalists face. We then outline how the contributions to this volume will help scholars and practitioners conduct high-quality experiments.

Julieta Suárez-Cao | Efectos de la postergación de las elecciones de abril: Julieta Suárez Cao analiza escenario en Mirada Política

March 30, 2021 – from Emol
El domingo, el Presidente de la República, Sebastián Piñera, anunció que presentará un proyecto para postergar las elecciones del 10 y 11 de abril por el escenario sanitario en el que se encuentra el país: "Consideramos que llevar a cabo la elección en este contexto puede agravar la situación, no solo por el acto eleccionario, sino que principalmente por las actividades anexas a la votación".

James Druckman | Vaccination Rates for Healthcare Workers Have Doubled

March 26, 2021 – from Northwestern Institute for Policy Research
"Since January, more U.S. healthcare workers have said they are ready to get vaccinated, with rates of vaccine hesitancy dropping from 37% to 29%, according to a new survey from a research consortium that includes Northwestern University. The same survey finds a similar drop in the hesitancy rate for workers outside of healthcare, falling from 41% to 31%. "Early on a lot of people expressed outright hesitancy, but they seem to be moving as more and more people get vaccinated without major incidence," said IPR political scientist James Druckman, who co-leads the ongoing, national survey of more than 25,000 Americans. The researchers from Northwestern, Harvard, Northeastern, and Rutgers are investigating changes in attitudes about the vaccine and vaccination rates among healthcare workers from previous data collected in February. The survey also shows the rate of vaccination has double

Julie Lee Merseth | Meghan McCain tried to weigh in on identity politics and fumbled. There's a right way to do it.

March 25, 2021 – from USA Today
"I believe that what makes America exceptional is the fact that we're a meritocracy that you can be anything — that you can come from anywhere and go and have success in any capacity. And I think the question Democrats have to reconcile with right now is whether or not, race and gender are more important than qualification," McCain said on Wednesday's show, reacting to Duckworth saying she would not support any more of President Joe Biden's non-diverse nominees until he appoints more Asian Americans to his Cabinet.

Matthew Lacombe | What Boulder shooting means for the future of the NRA

March 24, 2021 – from USA Today
"With mass shootings back in the news following a massacre in Boulder, Colorado — less than a week after a series of armed attacks on spas in the Atlanta area — an open question is whether the National Rifle Association is still a politically powerful organization."

Jesse Dillon Savage | Common-Pool Hierarchy: Explaining the Emergence of Cooperative Hierarchies

March 24, 2021 – from International Studies Quarterly
This paper introduces a new conceptualization of hierarchy where the sovereign rights of the subordinate state are understood as a resource that can be controlled by multiple dominant states. As with other resources, different types of property regimes can be developed to organize access and extraction of sovereignty, such as common property resources regimes. Finally, an explanation of common-pool hierarchy regimes is developed and explored using two case studies: European imperialism in the nineteenth-century China and the scramble for Africa.

Loubna El Amine | My Childhood Bedroom

March 23, 2021 – from World Literature Today
"A writer reflects on her relationship to home in Beirut. "Why the windows of the room did not shatter from the August 4 explosion is still a mystery. The building is only five kilometers away from the port of Beirut, and the windows of the neighbors’ apartment broke. In other buildings nearby, even the aluminum frames came off; photos circulating showed the big metal pieces, mixed with glass shards and drops of blood, covering disordered furniture""

James Druckman | Survey Shows Parents Are More Hesitant to Get Vaccines for Their Kids

March 22, 2021 – from Northwestern Institute for Policy Research
While coronavirus vaccines are yet to be approved for children, public health officials worry that the increasing numbers of parents skeptical of vaccinating their children for any disease could affect overall vaccination rates for the coronavirus. A new survey aims to understand how prevalent this attitude is among parents compared to adults without children.

Andrew Kelly | Here’s How the COVID Relief Bill Can Remake Health Care Policy in the US

March 18, 2021 – from Medium
"“You can’t fight something with nothing.” For opponents of national health reform, this has become something of a proverb. This phrase — conceived by the California public relations firm of Whitaker and Baxter for its client the American Medical Association (AMA) — was first employed in 1949 as a strategy in the fight against the rising tide of support for national health insurance. The AMA had long fought against any type of insurance, government-sponsored or private insurance, as a financial threat to the industry."

Jacob Rothschild | Revisiting the ‘gold standard’ of polling: new methods outperformed traditional ones in 2020

March 18, 2021 – from Medium
Even before 2020 polling errors became evident, analysts wondered if we could trust the polls. After the election, concerns spiked — overall errors were even larger than in 2016. Frank Luntz went so far as to declare, “the polling profession is done.” We disagree. We think polling has a strong future if the proper methods are used — but these methods may come as a surprise.

Ian Hurd | Biden’s China policy lacks a ‘grand ambition’

March 18, 2021 – from Northwestern Now
"“The group is severely limited by the reliance of its member countries on China as a customer, a source of goods, and a partner in many other endeavors,” said Ian Hurd, professor of political science and director of the Weinberg College Center for International and Area Studies at Northwestern. “It’s impossible to imagine the Quad expanding to NATO-scale because of the fundamental co-dependence among China, the U.S., Japan, Australia and India in the world economy,” he said. Hurd said these countries may not be willing to use actual tools of influence that they have. It’s hard to imagine, for example, Australia impeding sales of minerals to China or the U.S. denying access to its markets. And the U.S., Hurd added, is unlikely to persuade China to give up its effort to control maritime space."

Elizabeth Shakman Hurd | At Home and Abroad: The Politics of American Religion

March 17, 2021 – from Institute for Religion, Culture, and Public Life
From right to left, notions of religion and religious freedom are fundamental to how many Americans have understood their country and themselves. Ideas of religion, politics, and the interplay between them are no less crucial to how the United States has engaged with the world beyond its borders. Yet scholarship on American religion tends to bracket the domestic and foreign, despite the fact that assumptions about the differences between ourselves and others deeply shape American religious categories and identities.

Erin Lockwood | UCI prof answers questions about Robinhood practices posed by OC Congresswoman Steel

March 17, 2021 – from Southern California Record
"Lee's interview was after Rep. Michelle Steel (R-CA) and her Congressional colleagues asked for answers in a letter following the surge of stocks like GameStop on the Robinhood app. “Trading apps aren't just neutral onramps into financial markets for small-dollar investors,” said Erin Lockwood, assistant professor of political science at the University of California, Irvine. “Despite marketing themselves as tools of financial inclusion, they're not providing a public service; they are for-profit companies with their own incentives and their own regulatory obligations, some of which entail, directly or indirectly, imposing limits on what trading activities are allowed.”"

Gabby Birenbaum | Gen Z’s high-speed rail meme dream, explained

March 16, 2021 – from Vox
For members of the young online left, the high-speed rail map has become a ubiquitous fixture of politics Twitter. Created by graphic designer Alfred Twu in 2013, the map depicts a system of interconnected high-speed rail lines, linking Los Angeles to New York and Minneapolis to Miami, among other projects. (High-speed rail refers to lines that typically run over 160 miles per hour.) Even with America’s resident Amtrak champion, Joe Biden, now in the White House, and the administration preparing a $2 trillion green infrastructure proposal, a network like the one in Twu’s map is at best decades away.

Andrene Wright | 2021 Symposium

March 9, 2021 – from Northwestern Women's Center
We are proud to host this opportunity for our communities to learn about mutual aid from the people who are living, doing, teaching, and writing about it.

Karen Alter | One year on, COVID-19 has driven women out of the labor force

March 5, 2021 – from Northwestern Now
“Even before the pandemic, female faculty were disadvantaged in nearly all metrics university leaders use to assess faculty quality and impact. Numerous studies show that grants to female faculty are lower, citations and teaching evaluations are lower, and salaries are lower. These studies, which control for so many factors, bolster the lived experience of female faculty. It is hard not to conclude that gender bias is at play."

Elizabeth Shakman Hurd | Is There a Right to Heresy?

March 5, 2021 – from Boston Review
In the wake of Samuel Paty’s murder, the French government proposed a “draft law to strengthen republican values” aimed at reinforcing the principles of French laïcité. Laïcité, often translated as secularism, refers to the French Law of 1905 on the Separation of Churches and State which legally established state secularism. Today many question the extent to which this historic legal settlement and cultural tradition is equipped to accommodate minority religions and meet the needs of an increasingly diverse society. Yet President Macron has advanced a law against “separatism” to defend laïcité, describing Islam as a religion “that is in crisis.”

Daniel Galvin | Florida Policymakers Need to Reassess How the Minimum Wage is Enforced

March 4, 2021 – from Florida Policy Institute
In November 2020, Floridians made the historic decision to move an estimated 2.5 million Floridians closer to a living wage with the passage of Amendment 2. The state minimum wage increase goes into effect in September 2021, increasing from $8.65 to $10 per hour, then rising by $1 per hour each year until it reaches $15 in 2026. Failing to pay workers the minimum wage is but one of many forms of wage theft. However, given the timeliness of Amendment 2, wage theft in this report refers solely to minimum wage violations among low-wage workers (those with incomes in the bottom 20 percent) unless otherwise indicated.

Joshua Freedman | Violence & Restraint in the 2nd Intifada, Humanitarian Challenges in the Yemen War, & Negotiating Identity in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (S. 10, Ep. 9)

March 4, 2021 – from POMEPS
Devorah Manekin of Hebrew University of Jerusalem talks about her latest book, Regular Soldiers, Irregular War: Violence and Restraint in the Second Intifada, with Marc Lynch on this week’s podcast. The book presents a theoretical framework for understanding the various forms of behavior in which soldiers engage during counterinsurgency campaigns—compliance and shirking, abuse and restraint, as well as the creation of new violent practices. (Starts at 32:41). Jeannie Sowers of University of Hampshire and Erika Weinthal of Duke University speak about their new article entitled, “Humanitarian challenges and the targeting of civilian infrastructure in the Yemen war,” published in International Affairs. (Starts at 0:54).

Sally Nuamah | Voices Across Time: Sharing Women’s Experiences of Re-entry

March 3, 2021 – from Block Museum of Art
“Voices Across Time'' features a live screening and conversation with members of Grace House and Beyondmedia Education with moderation by Professor Sally Nuamah from the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern. In addition to the live event, two supplemental films from the Beyondmedia collection will be available to watch on the Block's Vimeo from March 3 through March 7. The event will have captions.

Jahara Matisek | Security force assistance as a preferred form of 21st century warfare

March 3, 2021 – from Taylor & Francis Online
This chapter discusses the historical context of military assistance missions, which have been a mainstay of international politics, more so over the last 200 years. It shows that security force assistance (SFA) has increasingly become the newly institutionalised way of war for the West. The chapter also discusses the allure and challenges of modern SFA becoming normalised and bureaucratised in the West. Preoccupying most militaries has been the unconventional military mission of providing security assistance to weak and failing states. However, industrialisation alongside the rise of colonialism changed the depth and scale of security assistance missions. The trends are indicative of the normalisation and bureaucratisation of SFA as a modern Western way of warfare.


Dan McAdams | Reckoning with Trump: A Conversation with Psychologist Dan McAdams

February 26, 2021 – from soundcloud
This episode of the Global Lunchbox features a conversation with Dan McAdams about his book The Strange Case of Donald J. Trump: A Psychological Reckoning (2020). McAdams is the Henry Wade Rogers Professor of Psychology and Professor of Human Development and Social Policy at Northwestern. A key figure in the recent emergence within the social sciences of narrative approaches to studying human lives, his previous books include The Art and Science of Personality Development (2015) and The Redemptive Self (2006).

Benjamin Page | Response to Erik J. Engstrom and Robert Huckfeldt’s Review of Democracy in America? What Has Gone Wrong and What We Can Do about It

February 26, 2021 – from Cambridge Core
We agree that a chief cause of the feeble US response to economic inequality is the weakness of the US working class. And we agree that a crucial cause of that weakness is racial division among workers, sometimes inflamed by opportunistic politicians or self-interested employers who benefit from a low-paid and powerless workforce. We would add two points. Increased capital mobility, the global labor market, and automation have strengthened capital versus labor in all advanced countries. But specific undemocratic features of US political institutions and processes have further increased the relative influence of the affluent and wealthy here, so that in the United States—more than in Western Europe—public policies have failed to offer much help. Our two books do not really disagree much about this: they just emphasize different parts of the story.

Yunkyo Kim & Justin Zimmerman | The Importance of Magnifying Marginalized Voices in Politics and Academia

February 26, 2021 – from Department of Political Science
Ph.D. candidate Justin Zimmerman is a race, ethnicity, and politics scholar with an interest in Black political thought. The 2020 American Political Science Association First Generation Scholar in the Profession Accessibility Grant recipient earned his bachelor’s and masters at the University of Alabama. He then worked in the U.S. Department of State as a press assistant, and later as an acquisition consultant at Diplomatic Security and consultant to the Department of Treasury. In 2017, he returned to academia to focus on what he wanted to do in the first place: research that dealt with Black People. In this question-and-answer session, Zimmerman discussed the power of research, his forthcoming papers, and his hopes for the new presidential administration. This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Gde Metera, EDGS | Arryman Scholar on Researching Religion and Politics

February 25, 2021 – from Buffet Institute for Global Affairs
Arryman Scholar Gde Metera, PhD in Political Science, successfully defended his doctoral dissertation in December 2020 and he will graduate at the end of Winter Quarter 2021! Below he responds to questions about his research interests and his dissertation, Coercion in Search of Legitimacy: The Secular State, Religious Politics, and Religious Coercion in Indonesia Under the New Order, 1967-1998.

Mara Suttmann-Lea | Determinants of Rejected Mail Ballots in Georgia’s 2018 General Election

February 25, 2021 – from Sage Journals
Because of the COVID-19 threat to in-person voting in the November 2020 election, state and local election officials have pivoted to mail-in voting as a potential solution. This method of voting—while safe from a public health standpoint—comes with its own set of problems, as increased use of mail voting risks amplifying existing discrepancies in rejected mail ballots. While some mail ballot rejections are to be expected, a lack of uniformity in whose ballots get rejected among subgroups of voters—whether for mistakes on a ballot return envelope (BRE) or lateness—raise concerns about equal representation. We draw on official statewide voter file and mail-in ballot data from the 2018 midterm election in Georgia, a state that until the pandemic did not have widespread use of mail voting, to test whether some voters are more likely to cast a mail ballot that does not count.

Nathan E. Dial | What is the Impact of College Basketball on an NBA Career

February 25, 2021 – from Scholar
Before 2006, the National Basketball Association (NBA) required 18 years of age and high school completion to enter their draft. Since 2006, the NBA requires players to be at least one year removed from high school and 19 years of age, effectively, requiring NBA hopefuls to participate in college basketball for at least one season. This raises the question, what is the impact of college basketball on elite high school players’ NBA production and prosperity?

Julian Gerez | Understanding and overcoming vaccine hesitancy in Latin America: A descriptive and experimental study

February 24, 2021 – from Columbia Institute of Latin American Studies
As COVID19 vaccinations campaigns are rolling out across Latin America, surveys of 6 major Latam countries explore citizen willingness to receive vaccination - both in terms of general and immediate willingness to get vaccinated - before then seeking to experimentally understand the extent to which hesitancy is driven by limited information, collective action problems, and political messaging. Our findings will both illuminate the causes of vaccine hesitancy, and the efficacy of potential policy response.

Maya Novak-Herzog | Your Tango: The Price Of Male Shame

February 24, 2021 – from YourTango
"The language I have to discuss my experiences feels like a very gender essentialist view of human beings in many ways. Because this is my blog, I do not have language outside of my own experiences to express them otherwise. In no way does this encapsulate the range, depth, and complexity of human experience, particularly in regard to gender."

James N. Druckman | Tracking Attitudes and Behavior on COVID in All 50 States, Week by Week

February 23, 2021 – from HARVARDKennedySchool
In a far-reaching project measuring American attitudes and behavior during the pandemic, researchers from Harvard and three other universities have polled people in all 50 states for nearly a year, reporting each week not just on evolving views toward the virus but on how the tumultuous political events helped shape the public response.

Ian Hurd | Essay Symposium

February 23, 2021 – from Northwestern Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences
The Global Governance in the Age of COVID project has convened leading professionals in history, law, politics, and global affairs to discuss what the COVID-19 crisis is revealing about our lives and institutions. The essays that follow represent a diverse snapshot of views that aim to make sense of our current condition and its relation to the past and the future. They are a complement to the webinars hosted by the Weinberg College Center for International and Area Studies in the autumn of 2020.

Ian Hurd & Robert Launay | Global Lunchbox: A Conversation with Robert Launay about his Book Savages, Romans, and Despots

February 22, 2021 – from The Global Lunchbox Podcast
"This episode of the Global Lunchbox features a conversation with anthropologist Robert Launay about his book Savages, Romans, and Despots: Thinking about Others from Montaigne to Herder. Robert Launay is Professor of Anthropology at Northwestern University. His previous books include Traders without Trade, Beyond the Stream: Islam and Society in a West African Town, and Foundations of Anthropological Theory."

Jahara Franky Matisek | Military Advising and Assistance in Somalia: Fragmented Interveners, Fragmented Somali Military Forces

February 20, 2021 – from Taylor Francis Online
Southern Somalia has attracted substantial military aid and assistance for decades. As the state disintegrated in the late 1980s, clan dynamics became more critical, warlords emerged, and power bases shifted. Since 2008, the number of foreign military forces and advisors (including private military contractors) has substantially increased, as has the creation of numerous Somali security units. Such actions are symptomatic of broader trends concerning multilateral attempts to rebuild security forces in fractious states, where security assistance activities lack unity or common national interests. This has resulted in various Somali military forces with different loyalties (domestic and international), capabilities, and priorities in each Federal Member State (FMS).

Erin Lockwood | This Agency Could Push Banks to Fight Inequality—and Biden Has to Decide Who Should Run It

February 19, 2021 – from Mother Jones
Erin Lockwood, a political science professor at UC Irvine who has studied the 2008 financial crisis, says progressive enthusiasm for Baradaran over Barr likely has something to do with the break she would represent from the traditional Washington approach to financial regulation, a system Lockwood describes as “preventing banks from doing bad things” rather than taking proactive steps that could lessen inequality.

Swati Srivastava | Navigating NGO–Government Relations in Human Rights: New Archival Evidence from Amnesty International, 1961–1986

February 18, 2021 – from Oxford Academic
This research note unveils new archival evidence from Amnesty International's first twenty-five years (1961–1986) to shed light on the realization of international human rights as Amnesty balanced “nonpolitical politics” through multifaceted government relations. The research draws from minutes and reports of eighty meetings of Amnesty's executive leadership and interviews from the 1983 to 1985 Amnesty Oral History project, all collected from the International Institute of Social History. The records show that during this time Amnesty relied on government and foundation funding to exit a severe financial crisis. Amnesty also cultivated a private diplomatic network with governments for access and advocacy and conducted side bargains with closed countries for access and reforms

Kim Marion Suiseeya | NSF, DOE, DHS empower communities to make local impacts through the Civic Innovation Challenge

February 17, 2021 – from National Science Foudation
Across the country, communities have needs ripe for innovative solutions -- from rethinking transit and housing affordability to operating safe schools during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Civic Innovation Challenge, led by the U.S. National Science Foundation in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Department of Homeland Security, seeks to empower communities to address those needs by establishing research partnerships that can achieve not just local impacts but potentially be scaled up regionally, or even nationally. The Civic Innovation Challenge has now taken a major step by naming 52 teams across 30 states as well as tribal regions, Washington DC and Puerto Rico as Stage-1 awardees.

Geraldo Cadava | Global Lunchbox: The Hispanic Republican, from Nixon to Trump — A Conversation with Geraldo Cadava

February 12, 2021 – from SoundCloud
This episode of the Global Lunchbox features a conversation with historian Geraldo Cadava about his book The Hispanic Republican: The Shaping of an American Political Identity, from Nixon to Trump. Geraldo Cadava is Associate Professor of History and Director of the Latina & Latino Studies Program at Northwestern. His work focuses on Latinos in the United States and the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. The Global Lunchbox series, hosted by the Center for International & Area Studies at Northwestern University, features conversations with scholars in the social sciences and humanities about their current research on a range of critical global issues.

Justin Zimmerman | The Politics and Policy of Racial Justice In the US

February 12, 2021 – from The Breeze
Join us this Friday Feb 12 2:30pm EST for our first of three @JMUpolisci Virtual Symposium on Teaching & Learning the Politics of Racial Justice panel featuring @meganfrancis @povertyscholar @JZPhilosophy. More info Cosponsored by @aaadstudies @JMUCivic

Jonathan Schulman | Young Republicans split from Trump and GOP elders on US foreign policy: 3 charts

February 12, 2021 – from The Conversation
That may not be the future of GOP foreign policy, according to my political science research. I analyzed four surveys taken during the Trump administration asking Americans about foreign policy issues. Breaking down responses by both party and age, I found that younger Republicans diverge from Trump’s “America First” agenda. In fact, on some foreign policy issues, from China to trade, young Republicans are closer on the ideological spectrum to the Democratic mainstream than to their Republican elders.

Cody Keenan | Mixing Board Studio Session: Cody Keenan

February 12, 2021 – from Mixing Board
Cody is currently a partner at Fenway — a strategic communications firm focused on executive leadership, speechwriting and messaging. He’s also working on a book of his own. As Variety notes, “‘Grace’ will be released in 2022. Keenan’s book will focus on 10 days in Obama’s presidency, during which he helped write addresses for the president dealing with everything from a public debate on the Confederate flag to Supreme Court rulings on healthcare and gay marriage.” Among other topics, Mixing Board founder Sean Garrett and Cody talked about leadership and taking risks by stepping into hot societal topics — from political leaders to CEOs. Following are excerpts of that conversation.

Julieta Suarez-Cao | Cuestionario Constituyente a Julieta Suárez-Cao, coordinadora de la Red de Politólogas en Chile

February 12, 2021 – from Contexto
Currently, she is focused on her work as coordinator of the Network of Political Scientists in Chile, an organization present in 26 countries that seeks to “promote, make visible and enhance the work of women dedicated to Political Science” and that promotes the #nosinmujeres campaign. Julieta Suarez-Cao sat down to answer the questionnaire Constituent of Context Factual and here you can read all the most personal opinions of political scientist.

Yunkyo Kim & Kumar Ramanathan | Teaching and Researching U.S. Civil Rights and Racial Inequalities

February 11, 2021 – from Northwestern: Department of Political Science
"Ph.D. candidate Kumar Ramanathan has researched a wide variety of topics from Chicago politics to immigrant participation to white racial attitudes. As a 2020-21 American Bar Foundation/Northwestern University Doctoral Fellow, Ramanathan will participate in seminars and workshops with other fellows and research faculty, and receive mentorship on his research projects. His dissertation, "Building a Civil Rights Agenda: The Democratic Party and the Origins of Racial Liberalism” investigates how liberal politicians in the northern Democratic Party contested and constructed a civil rights legislative agenda in the mid-20th century, forming racial liberalism as we know it today. In this interview, Ramanathan explains how his diverse interests intersect in his dissertation. This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity."

James Druckman | In Survey, Two-Thirds of Parents Voice Concern About Students’ Learning Losses

February 9, 2021 – from Northwestern: Institute for Policy Research
Two-thirds of respondents (67%), whether students or parents, say they are concerned about the quality of K–12 learning during the pandemic, according to a new national survey of more than 25,000 people by Northwestern, Northeastern, Rutgers, and Harvard universities. The finding holds across respondents from different racial backgrounds, incomes, and political affiliations. “The shift to virtual learning was impressive in many ways, but after nearly a year, it is clear that concerns are growing,” said IPR political scientist James Druckman.

Ian Hurd & Wendy Griswold | Global Lunchbox: Wendy Griswold on Access, Desire & the Future of the Reading Class

February 8, 2021 – from The Global Lunchbox Podcast
"This episode of the Global Lunchbox features a conversation with sociologist Wendy Griswold, who takes a comparative and international look at access, desire, and the future of the reading class. Wendy Griswold is Professor of Sociology and Bergen Evans Professor in the Humanities at Northwestern University. She directs the Culture and Society Workshop and is affiliated with the Program of African Studies and the Comparative Literary Studies Program. Her books include American Guides: The Federal Writers' Project and the Casting of American Culture (2016), Regionalism and the Reading Class (2008), Bearing Witness: Readers, Writers, and the Novel in Nigeria (2000), and Renaissance Revivals: Revenge Tragedy and City Comedy in the London Theatre, 1576 - 1980 (1986)."

Laurel Harbridge-Yong | Republican Congressman Faces Blowback for Anti-Trump Stance

February 6, 2021 – from VOA News
“This kind of schism over the loyalty to Trump, I think, creates the opportunity for potentially more [primary] challengers [in 2022],” Northwestern University political scientist Laurel Harbridge-Yong told VOA during a recent Skype interview. She added that banishing anti-Trump Republicans could make the party less palatable to the general voting public. “It points to how members are more focused on a small number of people in their constituency — their primary electorate, and even within that, an ardent base — whose interests might not be the same as the rest of their constituents,” Harbridge-Yong said. “It means that legislators are acting in the interests of a small minority rather than the interests of the majority of their constituents, much the less the majority of the country as a whole.”

Alvin B Tillery Jr | Duquesne University professor who used racial slur can be reinstated but faces sanctions, including suspension

February 5, 2021 – from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“Professor Shank will be required to begin mandatory diversity, equity and inclusion training with a highly-experienced trainer selected by the President: Dr. Alvin B. Tillery, Jr., Ph.D., Founder and Director of the Center for the Study of Diversity and Democracy at Northwestern University,’’ according to the summary

Ian Hurd & Nitasha Sharma | Global Lunchbox: Nitasha Sharma on Doing Comparative Race Studies

February 5, 2021 – from The Global Lunchbox Podcast
"This episode of the Global Lunchbox features a conversation with Nitasha Tamar Sharma on the theme of "Conducting Comparative Race Studies: Black Studies, Native Studies, and Black Residents of the Hawaiian Islands". Sharma is Associate Professor of African American Studies and Asian American Studies and Director of the Asian American Studies Program at Northwestern. She is the author of Hip Hop Desis: South Asian Americans, Blackness, and a Global Race Consciousness (2010) and Hawai'i Is My Haven: Race and Indigeneity in the Black Pacific (forthcoming in September 2021)."

James Druckman | Guns Sales Spike in 2020

February 5, 2021 – from Northwestern: Institutte for Policy Research
Amid the protests and turbulence of 2020, Americans set a new record for gun purchases, with the FBI tallying a new high of 21 million background checks over the year. That was an increase of 26% over the 2016 record of 15.7 million. In a new national survey that took place between December 16 and January 11, nearly 9,000 of 25,000 Americans said they bought guns in 2020. The researchers then asked about why they bought them. Gun sales were especially high in March when the pandemic and lockdowns became widespread and in June at the peak of the Black Lives Matter protests. "These events generated feelings of uncertainty and threat, and Americans apparently felt some security in buying guns.” said IPR political scientist James Druckman.

Reuel Rogers, Jae Yeon Kim | History, Agency, Power, and Linked Fate

February 5, 2021 – from OSF PrePrints
Racial linked fate, the concept introduced by Dawson (1994) almost three decades ago, reoriented the study of racism and mass political behavior in the U.S. The scholarship traditionally had focused largely on the racial psychology of whites, how racism seeps into their political views and actions. Dawson proposed the black utility heuristic theory and linked fate, its associated measure, as an empirical framework to investigate the political behavior of blacks, the racial minority group most harmed by racism. Since then, linked fate has become an almost ubiquitous variable of interest in the research on minority group dynamics in American politics.

Laurel Harbridge-Yong | Too Afraid To Ask: The serious implications of Biden’s impeachment charge

February 2, 2021 – from North by Northwestern
"These articles of impeachment are more position-taking than an actual threat against Biden," Harbridge-Yong explained. They may not even be brought to a vote, considering the Democrat-led House Judiciary Committee decides whether Congress will pursue the articles. “My understanding of these articles of impeachment,” Harbridge-Yong said, is that they are “contributing to the kind of alternative facts and alternate realities that members of the two parties seem to exist in these days, in terms of working off of very different versions of what they see as the truth.”

Sarah Bouchat | Myanmar’s coup, explained

February 1, 2021 – from Vox
Northwestern’s Sarah Bouchat, meanwhile, has a more cunning explanation. The military, Bouchat said, knows it will always have the most power in Myanmar. But what it could gain through the electoral process was legitimacy. If its political arm could win elections, then its full control of the country would have national, democratic support.

Gabby Birenbaum | Rep. Adam Kinzinger’s new PAC hopes to pull the GOP away from Trump

February 1, 2021 – from Vox
Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) has been one of former President Donald Trump’s loudest — and only — critics among Republicans in Congress. Now, after recently voting to impeach the former president for a second time, Kinzinger is launching a political action committee to support anti-Trump Republicans and purge the GOP of Trump’s influence.

Laurel Harbridge Yong | Democrats Might Use Reconciliation To Pass COVID-19 Relief Bill

February 1, 2021 – from Newsy
"Congress begins with a budget reconciliation bill that sets out the spending targets. It's a chance to take one of their spending priorities and say what needs to change in current law to kind of fit within that framework. Over time obviously strategic politicians recognized that this was a great way to avoid the super majored requirement." "But it certainly suggests that the democrats would not have to move legislation as close to the preferences of the legislators in the republican party as they would if they were passing legislation in the world where the filibuster was an option."


Kenny Allen | Allen: Why Greek Life is Beyond Reform

January 31, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
Greek life plays a strong and damaging role at Northwestern. A system where you have to pay to socialize will only be accessible to those who can pay, meaning society’s racial wealth gaps will always be reflected in membership. Even if these organizations try to make financial accommodations for those who can’t pay, the cost barrier to membership is a signal to low-income students that the chapters are not actively invested in their inclusion. If you’re a low-income student who would struggle to pay dues in the first place, you can only assume that more challenges will follow. Even with dues covered, you may not be able to afford Ubers downtown to bar nights, spring trips to faraway places, the formal attire expected at events, or meals on the days where your Greek house doesn’t provide food. Meanwhile, so many of the other members can pay for those things without a second thought.

Jeff Rice | Rice: A commentary on the lack of leadership at Northwestern

January 31, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
After more than half a century at Northwestern, I can honestly say that I see a substantial lack of leadership on the part of President Schapiro and Provost Hagerty exemplified by the exchanges between the administration and representatives of NU Community Not Cops. Students feel unsafe and that is not a good thing.

Gabby Birenbaum | Why Political TV Shows Could Barely Survive the Trump Era

January 30, 2021 – from Washington Monthly
In acceding to the notion that Trump did not believe in his rhetoric, or that he might eventually behave presidentially, Scandal inadvertently acknowledged what would become a new reality: Television writers were unable to craft storylines as captivating as the daily stories coming out of the campaign trail and, eventually, the Trump White House. Indeed, while political drama was a hallmark of Bush and Obama-era television, it would essentially fade during Trump’s tenure. Scandal, like its counterparts House of Cards and Veep, began during the Obama years and ended early into Trump’s tenure. One might have thought that a scandalous administration with unprecedented levels of absurdity would be fodder for fictional political television. The opposite, however, turned out to be true. Political dramas sputtered because they couldn’t keep up.?

Ian Hurd & Kate Masur | Global Lunchbox: Kate Masur on the Storming of the U.S. Capitol in Historical Perspective

January 29, 2021 – from The Global Lunchbox Podcast
"This episode of the Global Lunchbox features a conversation with Kate Masur, Associate Professor of History at Northwestern and author of Until Justice Be Done: America’s First Civil Rights Movement, from the Revolution to Reconstruction (2021). The point of departure for the conversation was Professor Masur's article "Yes, Wednesday’s attempted insurrection is who we are" published on the Washington Post blog Made by History on January 8, 2021 (co-authored with Gregory P. Downs)

Rachel Moskowitz | Building Public Schools in the City: The Role of Neighborhood Context on Voter Support for School Bonds

January 28, 2021 – from Urban Affairs Forum
With American cities’ socio-economic cleavages and ethnic diversity growing, policy making on urban public school issues has become ever more complex. For instance, what happens when the majority of voters are of a different racial group than a majority of the students in a city? One of the primary responsibilities of municipal government is the provision of public goods for its residents. Public education is one of the most substantial of these public goods. Decisions about education are often controversial; local education policy and politics are hotly contested and the outcomes can dramatically impact the lives of metropolitan residents.

Matthew Nelsen | Serious Historians Are Criticizing Trump’s 1776 Report. It’s How Most U.S. History Is Already Taught.

January 28, 2021 – from The Washington Post
Less than two weeks after the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, the Trump administration released its 1776 report, a guide to “restore patriotic education.” The report, released on Martin Luther King Day, aimed to discredit accounts of U.S. history that view the enslavement of Black people as central to the nation’s founding. In particular, the report rebukes the New York Times’s Pulitzer-winning 1619 Project and earlier popular histories, such as Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States.”

James N. Druckman | As Biden Seeks to Vaccinate 100 Million, Researchers Offer Insights into How

January 27, 2021 – from Northwestern Institute for Policy Research
As President Joe Biden promises to vaccinate more than 100 million Americans by the end of his first 100 days in office (April 29), new research offers several critical insights for those in charge of managing such a massive national public health effort. The researchers, who hail from four major U.S. universities including Northwestern, surveyed approximately 25,000 individuals from around the nation between December 16 and January 10. They accounted for participants’ race, gender, age, education, political affiliation and where they lived.

Sally A. Nuamah | Illinois Regulators Reject Plans For Outpatient Center That Would Replace Mercy Hospital

January 26, 2021 – from WBEZChicago
Sally Nuamah, who researches the social and political consequences of institutional closures at Northwestern University, noted how people who live in and around Bronzeville have watched hospitals and schools close over the years, and housing disappear. Mercy’s proposed testing center, she said, would reveal disparities that the public knows already exists, without providing solutions. “The question then, is how does the care center improve the health care needs of the community?” Nuamah asked.

Linus Hoeller (Medill '23) | America’s Decline to China Is the Product of Stagnation and Disillusionment

January 26, 2021 – from The World Uncensored
The American liberal world order was based on a set of ideals which lead to an open flow of information, people and trade; Things that not only stood in direct contradiction with the de-facto values of the communist world, but that also reinforced the American position within the Western system. However, since the high at the turn of the millennia, America’s position in the world has waned, at least in the eyes of the public. For instance, the number of people in Germany, a key U.S. ally in western Europe, who said they held a “favorable” view of the U.S. in 2000 was 78% according to a Gallup poll. In 2020, that number is down to 26%[1].?

Wendy Pearlman & Christina Greer | Stories from the Field

January 24, 2021 – from Apple Podcasts
Ora and Peter welcome Christina Greer from Fordham University, Wendy Pearlman from Northwestern University, and Paul Staniland from the University of Chicago to discuss local knowledge, perhaps the most important aspect of field research.

Mary McGrath | Prospects for U.S. and Global Climate Action with a Biden Administration

January 22, 2021 – from Buffet Institute for Global Affairs
Many are hopeful that Joe Biden’s presidency will quickly restore federal climate change measures and catalyze substantial new efforts, such as a "green new deal." Many also hope for the United States to play a leadership role in fueling far-reaching international cooperation around climate change. Are those expectations warranted or unrealistic? What can we expect from the new administration? A panel of Northwestern University political science, environment, and economics experts came together for a Northwestern Roberta Buffett Institute for Global Affairs webinar to discuss these questions and more.

Marina Henke | The Day After Tomorrow - What Future Does the USA Want?

January 21, 2021 – from SWR2
It's finally over. For Donald Trump, for the US and for the world. The time between the election and the assumption of office of Joe Biden was felt to be particularly painful because the usual rules and traditions were violated here. What does the new president do with his predecessor's legacy? Can Biden fix what Trump has done? Is "America first" a thing of the past?

Daniel Galvin, Josh Vincent | Democratic presidents have traditionally hurt their parties. Joe Biden may be different.

January 21, 2021 – from The Washington Post
Today, Jaime Harrison will be elected chair of the Democratic National Committee. Harrison is an institution builder. By choosing him, President Biden suggests he may be willing to become modern history’s first Democratic presidential party-builder — that is, the first Democratic president who prioritizes building up his party as well as enacting policy.

Marina Henke | Can President Biden Repair the Damage of the Trump Years?

January 21, 2021 – from debating europe
Natasha is worried that President Biden might drag Europe into new wars.What does Professor Henke think? "I don’t think so. As I said before, the US is on a trajectory of retrenchment or restraint. This is the result of the last two decades, since 9/11. The US responded to the terrorist attack by deploying military abroad and fighting the terrorist attack on foreign soil. As many of your readers know, this hasn’t been very successful. The middle east is still extremely unstable, and so is Afghanistan. What you can see now in Washington, not just under the Trump but also under the Obama administration, is a change in strategy. There is a reluctance to get engaged outside. There is even a reluctance in upholding the liberal world order, spreading democracy and even in upholding human rights."

Loubna El Amine | In Beirut

January 21, 2021 – from London Review of Books
Nothing changed and everything did. In Mar Mikhael, one of the areas of Beirut most damaged by the explosion last August, there were more signs of reconstruction than destruction when I visited last month. New glass storefronts were being mounted; inside pubs, furniture was set up for reopening. Across the highway, the remains of the 48-metre-high silos at the port stood charred and desolate.

Wendy Pearlman, John Bullock, Ricardo Galliano Court, Laurel Harbridge-Yong & Jeffrey Winters | Northwestern Political Science Faculty Forecast Future Republican Strength in Panel on Trump Presidency

January 20, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
Northwestern Political Science Faculty reflected on the Trump presidency and its implications on future U.S. politics in a Tuesday event. The virtual event, moderated by political science Prof. Wendy Pearlman, featured fellow political science Profs. John Bullock, Ricardo Galliano Court, Laurel Harbridge-Yong and Jeffrey Winters to offer reflections and answer questions on the last four years. The event was held on the eve of the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, marking the end of a fraught transition period.

Alvin B. Tillery Jr | 'I Solemnly Swear': 5 Things Biden Needs to do as He Takes Office Amid Historic Turmoil

January 19, 2021 – from USA TODAY
"It's more like a wartime inauguration than a normal inauguration," said Alvin Tillery Jr., director of Northwestern University's Center for the Study of Diversity and Democracy. "It's going to look a lot more like FDR and the economic crisis of the Great Depression or Lyndon Johnson and the crisis of the civil rights movement." As a result, he said, Biden's speech needs to be "a much more stirring defense of the institution of democracy" than the typical inauguration address – or the typical speech by Biden, usually a plain-spoken person.

Alvin B. Tillery | Trump Leaves America at its Most Divided Since the Civil War

January 19, 2021 – from Erie News Now
Seen against that history, the upsurge in White nationalist violence under Trump seems less like a new phenomenon than the resurgence of an old one -- a determination to use force to maintain a clear racial hierarchy. Political scientist Alvin Tillery, director of the Center for the Study of Diversity and Democracy at Northwestern University, says Trump's success at mobilizing an electoral coalition resistant to demographic change underscores the country's imperfect progress toward creating a true multiracial democracy. While America has formally been a democracy since its birth in the 1700s, he notes, for most of our history those democratic rights were limited solely to White men.

Will Reno | COVID-19 and Fieldwork: Challenges and Solutions

January 19, 2021 – from Cambridge Unversity Press
This reflection article presents insights on conducting fieldwork during and after COVID-19 from a diverse collection of political scientists—from department heads to graduate students based at public and private universities in the United States and abroad. Many of them contributed to a newly published volume, Stories from the Field: A Guide to Navigating Fieldwork in Political Science (Krause and Szekely 2020).

Laurel Harbridge-Yong, James N Druckman, Jamie Dominguez, & Alvin B. Tillery Jr | Inauguration Day: A Time to Heal

January 19, 2021 – from Northwestern Now
As Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th President of the United States, the inauguration occurs in the shadow of a violent siege on the Capitol Jan. 6 by pro-Trump supporters protesting ratification of the electoral vote. Northwestern experts in law, politics and history reflect on the significance of these historic days, as well as the challenges the incoming administration will need to address during a period of historical social unrest, political division and a public health and economic crisis.

Alexander Hertel-Fernandez (WCAS '08) | Ending At-Will Employment: A Guide for Just Cause Reform

January 19, 2021 – from Ending At-Will Employment: A Guide for Just Cause Reform
American exceptionalism in at-will employment has pernicious consequences for workers and US workplaces. As we explain in this brief, at-will employment corrodes enforcement of workers’ labor, employment, and civil rights (e.g., Blades 1967; McGinley 1996). At-will employment also leaves workers vulnerable to arbitrary and unfair treatment by managers and supervisors. Workers already likely to experience discrimination or illegal treatment from their employer—for example, Black and brown workers, workers with lower levels of formal education, and low-wage workers—are especially vulnerable under at-will employment. On a more fundamental level, at-will employment erodes workers’ dignity and diminishes the possibility of real workplace democracy.

Rachel Xanttopoulos (WCAS '11) | How I Got Here Podcast: Episode #3

January 19, 2021 – from The Garage
Nothing changed and everything did. In Mar Mikhael, one of the areas of Beirut most damaged by the explosion last August, there were more signs of reconstruction than destruction when I visited last month. New glass storefronts were being mounted; inside pubs, furniture was set up for reopening. Across the highway, the remains of the 48-metre-high silos at the port stood charred and desolate.

Daniel J. Galvin | Strategic Enforcement and Co-Enforcement of U.S. Labor Standards Are Needed to Protect Workers Through the Coronavirus Recession

January 14, 2021 – from Washington Center for Equitable Growth
The coronavirus pandemic and resulting recession combine to create a uniquely dangerous time for low-wage workers. U.S. unemployment hit record highs in April 2020 and remains persistently elevated. And employers are more likely to break labor laws and take advantage of low-wage workers, both in sectors where labor law violations are traditionally high and in sectors that normally have higher rates of compliance. These dangers confront workers because in a pandemic-induced recession they are in even weaker positions to speak up for themselves, report violations, or find new jobs.

Dan Galvin | Labor’s legacy

January 14, 2021 – from Work in Progress
At the same time that union density in the United States has declined and labor law has withered, employment law has flourished, proliferating at the subnational level and expanding into new substantive domains (see Figures 1 and 2 below). As a result, for the vast majority of 21st century workers, what rights and protections remain come not from labor law and the mechanism of collective bargaining, but from employment laws and the mechanisms of regulation and litigation.

Rebecca Kolins Givans, Alex Hertel-Fernandez (WCAS '08) | What the Teacher Strikes Taught Us — And What We Still Need to Learn

January 14, 2021 – from The Forge
Arizona teachers’ victories and setbacks raise broader questions about the causes and long-term consequences of the upsurge in teacher labor activism over the past two years. Where did these protests come from — and what role did individual teachers, activists, and formal union organizations play in them? Why did the wave of activism appear in some states and not others? Why did it take varying forms, and which of these forms was most effective? How should we think about the current wave against the longer historical arc of mass public sector strikes? And what is likely to be the effect of the strikes on education politics as well as the labor movement? These are some of the timely questions tackled by Strike for the Common Good:

Tulia Falleti | Mellon Just Futures Grant for “Dispossessions in the Americas: The Extraction of Bodies, Land, and Heritage from La Conquista to the Present”

January 13, 2021 – from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the largest funder of the arts and humanities in the US, announced today that grants totaling more than $72 million have been awarded to winners of its Just Futures Initiative—supporting teams of scholars who are studying past periods of crisis and disruption in order to lead us to cultural and social transformation. The 16 projects will receive grants of up to $5 million to be used over a three-year period to support multidisciplinary and multi-institutional collaborative teams producing solutions-based work that contributes to public understanding of the nation’s racist past and can lead to the creation of socially just futures.

Elizabeth Shakman Hurd | The Paradox of Free Religion

January 12, 2021 – from Berkley Center
Though historians now tell a much more complex story about religion in early America, the notion that the United States invented and perfected religious freedom remains firmly ensconced in U.S. public discourse. Since the passage of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998, U.S. promotion of international religious freedom advocacy is also written into the law. Legal guarantees of religious freedom appear as riders in trade agreements, aid packages, and humanitarian projects. The foreign policy establishment is abuzz with talk of freedom, toleration, and rights. Proponents defend efforts to export religious freedom globally, with the United States proudly at the helm.

Laurel Harbridge-Yong | House Speeding to Impeach Trump for Capitol ‘Insurrection’

January 11, 2021 – from wttw
"The most important reason to do it is to show there is accountability for his actions. So whether or not he is physically removed from office before his terms ends in the presidential transition occurs I think it's important to show that our democratic institutions are stronger than the pressure he has put on them to overturn free and fair elections and I worry without accountability this could become a political norm. That any losing candidate unhappy with the election tries to prevent the certification of votes, encourages supporters to overturn a free and fair election and that is not the way our democratic institution should work."

Sally Nuamah | Sally Nuamah seeks to empower Black girls with films, research

January 11, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
Prof. Sally Nuamah’s (Weinberg Doctorate ’16) scholarship isn’t constrained to the limits of traditionally academic research. A filmmaker, political scientist, author and non-profit founder, Nuamah has used various mediums to examine the education and political participation of Black women. Social policy Prof. Jonathan Guryan, her colleague in the Institute for Policy Research, said the scope of Nuamah’s work goes beyond what is typical for social scientists. “She publishes books, she publishes articles in peer reviewed academic journals,” Guryan said. “And then in addition to that, she also shares her ideas in ways that are more likely to reach non-academic audiences.”

Laurel Harbridge-Yong | Biden Will Call on Congress to Forgive $10,000 in Student Debt for all Borrowers

January 8, 2021 – from CNBC
President-elect Joe Biden will ask Congress to immediately cancel $10,000 in student debt for all borrowers and to extend the payment pause that’s scheduled to lapse this month, an aide told reporters Friday afternoon. Not all Democrats may be on board for student debt forgiveness and even if they were, procedural rules in the Senate generally require legislation to garner 60 votes. It will be hard to get nine Republicans in support of a debt jubilee. “With Democratic control of government, the Republicans are likely to re-assert their interest in the federal deficit and government spending,” said Laurel Harbridge-Yong, associate professor at Northwestern University.

Joshua Freedman | The Recognition Dilemma: Negotiating Identity in the Israeli–Palestinian Conflict

January 8, 2021 – from Oxford Academic
Political considerations can cause recognition, and its absence, to matter more than it otherwise should, just as they can cause others to view recognition campaigns as vulnerable and ontologically harmful pursuits. This article proposes both an instrumental model of recognition and a theory on the recognition dilemma needed to explain these competing attitudes. In doing so, it shifts attention away from social structure, and relations, in order to take domestic processes seriously as a forum for both the construction and contestation of recognition politics.

Mneesha Gellman | Emerson Professors on How We Move Forward After Insurrection

January 8, 2021 – from Emerson Today
That problem of racial and socioeconomic relations can also be seen in how different people don’t — or won’t — encounter each other, whether in our schools, in colleges, or even at the grocery store, said Gellman. U.S. schools must overhaul their curricula to stop perpetuating stereotypes and racism, and marginalizing groups. “Let’s rewrite our history books to tell the truth,” said Gellman. “Let’s make curricula respectful and honest. Tell [young students] that it was founded on a genocide of Native Americans, and not the Mayflower, the pilgrims and Thanksgiving.”

James Druckman | Racial Bias in Perceptions of Disease and Policy

January 7, 2021 – from NUFeinbergMed
Druckman is a member of the 50-state COVID-19 project, which was launched in March 2020 by a multi-university group of researchers with expertise in computational social science, network science, public opinion polling, epidemiology, public health, communication, and political science. The consortium aims to help practitioners and governments make informed decisions and allocate resources effectively. The research seeks to identify links between social behaviors and virus transmission, as well as and the impact of messaging and regulation on individual and community outcomes during the COVID-19 crisis.

Laurel Harbridge-Yong | Northwestern Political Scientists Call for Trump’s Removal

January 7, 2021 – from The Daily Northwestern
Six Northwestern political scientists signed a letter calling for President Donald Trump’s removal following the Capitol’s siege by Trump supporters seeking to stop the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s electoral college victory. For political science Prof. Laurel Harbridge-Yong, signing the letter was about holding officials accountable and preventing such attacks from becoming commonplace. She noted that the Center for Systemic Peace no longer designates the United States as a democracy following the Capitol’s invasion. “We cannot just ignore them and expect politics as normal to resume and fix things,” she said in an email to the Daily. “That is why I think that cabinet officials and Congress need to consider ways of sanctioning Trump’s behavior. I don’t know the best path forward but simply ignoring the problem does not seem to be an appropriate solution.”

Alvin B. Tillery | Storming the Capitol: ‘Rejection of the democratic will is very dangerous’

January 7, 2021 – from Northwestern Now
“Between the ways that the COVID-19 protestors, with their long guns, were treated in places like Wisconsin and Michigan and the ways that Black Lives Matters protestors were treated — 95% of the Black Lives Matter protests had no property damage. They were peaceful, and you had the National Guard there waiting for them. So this is that double standard that people have been talking about all year on display."

Alvin B. Tillery | Pro-Trump Mob Storms US Capitol in Bid to Overturn Election

January 6, 2021 – from wttw
“The reality is we have not seen anything like this in modern American history. We’ve seen this in state houses in the 19th century: 1874 to 1876, the counter reconstruction movement, where the klan and democratic allies threatened violence and entered statehouses in this way. And we’ve seen violence in state houses this summer in Michigan and places like that in response to the COVID-19 restrictions. But we have never seen this in the television age at the US capitol.”

Ana Arjona, Wendy Pearlman, Kendra Koivu | The Qualitative Transparency Deliberations: Insights and Implications

January 6, 2021 – from Cambridge University Press
In recent years, a variety of efforts have been made in political science to enable, encourage, or require scholars to be more open and explicit about the bases of their empirical claims and, in turn, make those claims more readily evaluable by others. While qualitative scholars have long taken an interest in making their research open, reflexive, and systematic, the recent push for overarching transparency norms and requirements has provoked serious concern within qualitative research communities and raised fundamental questions about the meaning, value, costs, and intellectual relevance of transparency for qualitative inquiry. In this Perspectives Reflection, we crystallize the central findings of a three-year deliberative process—the Qualitative Transparency Deliberations (QTD)—involving hundreds of political scientists in a broad discussion of these issues.

Sabina Satriyani Puspita | TGS Spotlight

January 5, 2021 – from Northwestern
"Pursuing a PhD is a years-long marathon. It’s important to focus on caring for ourselves and maintaining a collaborative—not competitive—attitude when interacting with our fellow graduate students.”

Ian Hurd, Christina Lafont | Global Lunchbox: Democracy without Shortcuts — Cristina Lafont

January 5, 2021 – from Soundcloud
“I try to defend public deliberation for slightly different reasons than deliberative democrats usually defend p d for… it is a common good, it is very important. It can help keep citizens informed … it can also help citizens to get to know the views of other citizens. It can also help find solutions… but those are not the ones that really are important and we need to be focusing on … my claim in the book is that public deliberation in a functioning public sphere has a distinctive democratic significance … that common deliberation for citizens is allowing them to testify their political views … and to have a conversation about why they have differences in opinion.”

Brandon Rottinghaus | Is Trump Finished After That Damning Georgia Phone Call?

January 4, 2021 – from CHRON
"I've been looking at scandals and how they affect presidential popularity and survival in office. Scandals in recent years have had a very little effect on politicians. A decade ago, it might have been a debilitating scandal. We also know executive officials typically survive in office. It's hard to get an incumbent president out of office through scandal. The president has shown himself to be a survivor politically. Trump is like political Teflon."

Ian Hurd & Tessie Liu | Global Lunchbox: Anti-Racism & Universality in the French & Haitian Revolutions

January 4, 2021 – from The Global Lunchbox Podcast
"In this episode of the Global Lunchbox, Tessie Liu, Associate Professor of History at Northwestern University, discusses her forthcoming book, A Frail Liberty: Anti-Racism and the Challenge of Universality in the French and Haitian Revolutions. The Global Lunchbox series, hosted by the Center for International & Area Studies at Northwestern University, features conversations with scholars in the social sciences and humanities about their current research on a range of critical global issues."

Mara Suttmann-Lea | COVID-19 Could Lead to Permanent Expansion of Voting Opportunities

January 3, 2021 – from The Day
Connecticut already has Election Day registration. There’s pretty compelling evidence that when you have both early voting and Election Day registration, they can do a lot to retain voters and boost new turnout,” Suttmann-Lea said. “From the perspective of increasing access to ballots, the state has shown it has the infrastructure to run something like expanded mail voting quite well, even when they’re doing it on the fly.”

Kim Suiseeya, Diana Elhard | Towards a Relational Approach in Global Climate Governance: Exploring the Role of Trust

January 1, 2021 – from ResearchGate
What role does trust play in global climate governance? For decades, claims of mistrust and distrust have dominated climate change policy arenas: doubts about climate change science and disagreements over rights and responsibilities related to mitigation, adaptation, loss, and damages undermine trust, impeding progress towards effective global climate action. And although frequently invoked in explanations of weak or failed climate action, there is limited research exploring the role of trust as a distinct concept in global climate governance. Here we seek to address this gap by developing a relational framework that focuses attention on how trust dynamics shape cooperation in four types of relationships: reliance, reciprocity, responsibility, and recognition.


James Druckman & Samara Klar | (Mis-)Estimating Affective Polarization

October 26, 2020 – from University of Chicago Press Journals
Affective polarization—the tendency of ordinary partisans to dislike and distrust those from the other party—is a defining feature of contemporary American politics. High levels of out-party animus stem, in part, from misperceptions of the other party’s voters. Specifically, individuals misestimate the ideological extremity and political engagement of typical out-partisans. When partisans are asked about “Democrats” or “The Republican Party,” they bring to mind stereotypes of engaged ideologues, and hence express contempt for the other party. The reality, however, is that such individuals are the exception rather than the norm.
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