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The Department of Political Science is a diverse group of active scholars dedicated to intellectual discovery and teaching excellence.

Department News and Announcements

  • Guy Grossman and Kristin Michelitch. 2018. "Information Dissemination, Competitive Pressure, and Politician Performance between Elections: A Field Experiment in Uganda." American Political Science Review, 1-22. doi:10.1017/S0003055417000648
  • Noam Lupu and Kristin Michelitch. 2018. "Advances in Survey Methods for the Developing World." Annual Review of Political Science 21:1
  • Jaimie Bleck and Kristin Michelitch. 2018. “Is Women’s Empowerment Associated with Political Knowledge and Opinions? Evidence from Rural Mali.” World Development.
  • Jaimie Bleck and Kristin Michelitch. 2017. “Capturing the Airwaves, Capturing the Nation? A Field Experiment on State-Run Media Effects in the Wake of the Malian Coup.” Journal of Politics 79(3): 873-889.
  • Mollie Cohen. 2017. “Protesting via the Null Ballot: An Assessment of the Decision to Cast an Invalid Vote in Latin America.” Political Behavior
  • Sheahan Virgin. 2017. “Competing Loyalties in Electoral Reform: An Analysis of the U.S. Electoral College.” Electoral Studies, 49: 38-48.
  • Kristin Michelitch and her co-authors published “Texting Complaints to Politicians: Name Personalization and Politicians’ Encouragement in Citizen Mobilization” in the September 2017 issue of Comparative Political Studies.
  • Sharece Thrower. 2017.  “To Revoke or Not Revoke? The Political Determinants of Executive Order Longevity.”  American Journal of Political Science, 61(3): 642-656.
  • Bateman, David A., Joshua D. Clintion and John S. Lapinski. 2017. “A House Divided? Roll Calls, Polarization, and Policy Differences in the U.S. House, 1877-2011.” American Journal of Political Science, 61(3): 698-714.
  • Hitt, Matthew P., Craig Volden and Alan E. Wiseman. 2017. “Spatial Models of Legislative Effectiveness.” American Journal of Political Science, 61(3): 575-590.
  • Brooke Ackerly. 2017. “Interpreting the Theory in the Practice of Human Rights,” Law & Philosophy, 36(2): 135-153.
  • Noam Lupu, Lucía Selios, and Zach Warner. 2017. “A New Measure of Congruence: The Earth Mover’s Distance.” Political Analysis, 25: 95-113.
  • Oscar Castorena and Elizabeth Zechmeister. 2017 “Representing the National Economic Agenda in Latin America: Variation by Fat and Lean Times and Party Brands.” Electoral Studies, 45(February): 208-218.
  • Mirya Holman, Jennifer L. Merolla, and Elizabeth Zechmeister. 2017. “Can Experience Overcome Stereotypes in Times of Terror Threat?” Research & Politics 4(1): 1-7.
  • Levine, Adam Seth and Cindy Kam.  2017. “Organizations, Credibility, and the Psychology of Collective Action.” Political Communication, 34(2): 200-220..
  • Cindy Kam, Allison Archer, and John Geer.  2017.  "Courting the Women's Vote: The Emotional, Cognitive, and Persuasive Effects of Gender-Based Appeals in Campaign Advertisements.” Political Behavior.  39(1): 51-75. 
  • Kuo, Alexander, Neil Malhotra, and Cecilia Hyunjung Mo. 2017. “Social Exclusion and Political Identity: The Case of Asian American Partisanship.” Journal of Politics, 79(1): 17-32.
  • Kristin Michelitch received the Andrew Carnegie Fellowship for her research collaborating with a Ugandan civil society organization to hold politicians accountable for job performance. The main paper from this work “Information Dissemination, Competitive Pressure, and Politician Performance between Elections: A Field Experiment in Uganda” has appeared in the discipline’s flagship journal, the American Political Science Review, in 2018. An additional paper, Texting Complaints to Politicians: Name Personalization and Politicians’ Encouragement in Citizen Mobilization” was published in Comparative Political Studies in 2017, and more papers are to follow.
  • Congratulations to Allison Anoll and Larry Bartels for winning two of the top awards of the International Society of Political Psychology this summer! Allison received the Best Dissertation Award in the field of Political Psychology for her dissertation entitled “Race, Place, and Political Action: How Social Norms and Segregation Shape Participation in America.” Larry, along with co-author Christopher Achen, received the David O. Sears Book Award for the best book published in the field of Mass Politics in the previous year for their book Democracy for Realists: Why Elections Do Not Produce Responsive Government.
  • Graduate student Anna Carella received the Rising Star Award from Tennessee United for Human Rights for her work locally and in other parts of the world to help others in need and with Advocates for Women’s and Kids’ Equality (AWAKE).
  • VU Political Science faculty bring home multiple awards from the 2016 American Political Science Association meetings in Philadelphia! Congratulations to all of our award winning scholars!
  • Hye Young You received the Deil Wright Award for Best Paper at APSA 2015 from the Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations section for her paper entitled “Cities as Lobbyists,” co-authored with Becca Goldstein.
  • Cecilia Mo was awarded the 2016 “Best Article in Political Behavior”award from APSA’s Elections, Public Opinion and Voting Behavior section for her piece entitled “The Consequences of Explicit and Implicit Gender Attitudes and Candidate Quality in the Calculation of Voters.”
  • Marc Hetherington received the Philip E. Converse Book Award at APSA for his book, co-authored with Jonathan Weiler, entitled Authoritarianism and Polarization in America (Cambridge University Press). The Phillip Converse Award is given by the Elections, Public Opinion,and Voting Behavior Section of APSA for “an outstanding book in the field published at least five years before.”
  • Noam Lupu was awarded the Jack Walker Award at the 2016 APSA meetings for his article “Brand Dilution and the Breakdown of Political Parties in Latin America,” published in World Politics. The Jack Walker Award is given by the Political Organizations and Parties Section of APSA for “an article published in the last two calendar years that makes an outstanding contribution to research and scholarship on political organizations and parties.
  • Efren Perez received the Midwest Political Science Association's Early Career Award recognizing a Latino Politics (pre-tenure) scholar based upon his research accomplishments and contributions to the discipline.
  • The International Society of Political Psychology has awarded Tom Rudolph and Marc Hetherington the 2016 Alexander L. George Book Award for the best book published in the field of political psychology during the previous calendar year, for their book, Why Washington Won't Work: Polarization, Political Trust, and the Governing Crisis.
  • Efren Perez's article, “Ricochet: How Elite Discourse Politicizes Racial and Ethnic Identities” in Political Behavior has been named one of the Must-Read Articles in 2015 by Springer's ''Change the World, One Article at a Time.''
  • Graduate student Brielle Harbin is this year’s recipient of the Margaret Cuninggim Women’s Center Leadership Award for demonstrating leadership in activities that contribute to the achievements, interests and goals of women or that promote gender equity.
  • Congratulations to Alan Wiseman - the Legislative Effectiveness Project will expand, funded by a $200,000 grant from The Madison Initiative. The project was created by Prof. Wiseman and Craig Volden of the University of Virginia.
  • Elizabeth Zechmeister, professor of political science, was honored with the Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching by The College of Arts and Science at Vanderbilt.
  • Carrie Russell, senior lecturer in political science, received the Harriet S. Gilliam Award for Excellence in Teaching by a Senior Lecturer or Lecturer. The award was given by Vanderbilt Arts and Science students and faculty peers.


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