News & Events

Archives 2013 - 2014


The Department of Political Science presents a John Graham Wootton Lecture

Peter A. Hall, Krupp Foundation Professor of European Studies, Department of Government, Harvard University

Tuesday, May 8, 2014
By invitation only
View 'Research Guide' for event >

The Department of Political Science presents a John Graham Wootton Lecture with Peter A. Hall, Krupp Foundation Professor of European Studies, Department of Government, Harvard University. Professor Hall will present The Euro Crisis: A case study in comparative political economy.


Professor Vasileios Syros: Visions of Empire and the Ideal Urban Organization in the European and Islamic Traditions

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 | 12 noon
The Fares Center, The Fletcher School
Pizza will be served beginning at 11:45am
View 'Research Guide' for event >

The Department of Political Science and Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service present a Frank C. Colcord Lecture with Professor Vasileios Syros, Visions of Empire and the Ideal Urban Organization in the European and Islamic Traditions. The talk is open to the public and will be held in The Fares Center, The Fletcher School. For more information on this event please email Jeannine Lenehan, Communication Coordinator for the Department of Political Science.

Vasileios Syros is a Senior Research Fellow of the Academy of Finland and currently Onassis Visiting Professor at McGill University. His research interests focus on the interaction among the Christian, Islamic, and Jewish traditions of political thought as well as on cross-cultural encounters in the early modern period. He is also engaged in the comparative study of European and Islamic empires, ideas on imperial ascendancy and decline, and pre-modern approaches to the comparative study of diverse forms of political organization and types of government.

Syros has published and Marsilus of Padua at the Intersection of Ancient and Medieval Traditions of Political Thought (University of Toronto Press, 2012); Well Begun is Only Half Done: Tracing Aristotle's Political Ideas in Medieval Arabic, Syriac, Byzantine, and Jewish Sources (ACMRS, 2011); Die Rezeption der aristotelischen politischen Philosophie bei Marsilius von Padua(Brill, 2007). He is currently at work on a new book project entitled Renaissance Jewry in an Age of Skepticism: Simone Luzzatto on Economic Decline and Religious Tolerance.

His writings have been published in various international peer-reviewed journals, including: Bulletin de philosophie médiévale, History of Political Thought, Journal of Early Modern History, Journal of World History, Medieval Encounters, Philosophy East & West, Revue des Études Juives, and Viator. In 2009 he was appointed editor-in-chief by the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies for the series Medieval Confluences: Studies in the Intellectual History and Comparative History of Ideas of the Medieval World. He has held research appointments at several institutions, including the Humboldt University of Berlin, the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study, the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Advanced Study.

He taught previously at The John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought at The University of Chicago, the École Pratique des Hautes Études, the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, and the University of Helsinki. He also served as visiting professor at the University of São Paulo, Charles University in Prague, University of Beijing, and Eötvös Loránd University.


The Department of Political Science presents a Frank C. Colcord Lecture
Prof. T.V. Paul: Pakistan: The Warrior State

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 | 12noon
Fletcher School, The Murrow Room
Pizza will be served
View 'Research Guide' for event >
View event flyer >

The Department of Political Science presents a Frank C. Colcord Lecture: T.V. Paul: Pakistan: The Warrior State, Tuesday, April 22nd, The Fletcher School, The Murrow Room.

On Tuesday, April 22, 2014, Prof. T.V. Paul, (James McGill Professor of International Relations, McGill University, Montréal, Canada), will speak on his forthcoming book, Pakistan: The Warrior State (Oxford University Press). Paul specializes and teaches courses in international relations, with an emphasis on international security, regional security and South Asia. Paul has authored and edited fifteen (15) books (all published through major university presses) and nearly fifty-five (55) journal articles or book chapters. The talk will begin at 12noon in the Murrow Room, The Fletcher School, and is open to all political science faculty, Fletcher faculty, and students.


Professor Nils Ringe: Measuring Legislative Influence: A Social Network Approach

Tuesday, April 15, 2014 | Noon
Barnum Hall, Room 104
Pizza will be served
View 'Research Guide' for event >

The Department of Political Science Presents a Frank C. Colcord Lecture with Professor Nils Ringe, Measuring Legislative Influence: A Social Network Approach (with Steven L. Wilson, University of Wisconsin-Madison).

On Tuesday, April 15th Nils Ringe, Associate Professor for the Department of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison will present with Steven L. Wilson Measuring Legislative Influence: A Social Network Approach. This paper introduces a new concept of influence in legislative politics (which is notoriously difficult to measure), namely lawmakers' centrality in co-voting networks. We conceptualize voting as a cueing process, where legislators follow the lead of particular colleagues when voting on the floor, and identify as most influential those lawmakers whose positions on specific issues affect the voting decisions of the greatest number of colleagues. We demonstrate that these "cue-providers" are always more central than their "followers" in a co-voting network which, in turn, means that we can use voting data to identify the most influential lawmakers. We apply these insights to the case of the European Parliament and find that influential legislators tend to be senior, ideologically moderate members from large party groups who play an active role in the deliberation and negotiation of legislation. In contrast, holding formal office (for example, serving as party leader or committee chair) is not associated with greater influence.

Ringe's research and teaching interests are European Union politics, legislatures, political parties, social networks, and elections.  Complete biography on Nils Ringe >


Professor Hugh Liebert: Is There a 'World Elsewhere': The Soldier, The State, and Some Version of Coriolanus

Monday, April 14, 2014 | 12noon
Braker Hall, Room 001
View 'Research Guide' for event >

The Department of Political Science and the Department of Classics Present Professor Hugh Liebert, Is There a 'World Elsewhere': The Soldier, The State, and Some Version of Coriolanus, Monday, April 14, 2014 at 12noon in Braker Hall, Room 001.

On Monday, April 14th Hugh Liebert, Assistant Professor of American politics, policy, and strategy in the Department of Social Sciences at the United States Military Academy will present Is There a 'World Elsewhere'? The Soldier, the State, and Some Versions of Coriolanus.

Coriolanus is famous for having served, abandoned, attacked, and reprieved Rome. Since antiquity his story has illustrated how civil orders both require and fear military men. However, the way in which Coriolanus' story has been told has changed significantly. Liebert examines three Coriolani: those of Plutarch's Life, Shakespeare's play, and Fiennes' movie to consider what they can teach us about the perennial nature and the present state of civil-military relations.

Liebert is a recent John Marshall visiting research fellow in the Jepson School of Leadership Studies at the University of Richmond in Virginia. Liebert received his B.A. from Harvard University and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago. His primary areas of interest are Greek and Roman political thought and American politics. He is the co-editor of Executive Power in Theory and Practice, and has published articles in History of Political Thought and The Review of Politics. His first book, Plutarch's Politics, is currently under review.


Ambassador Swanee Hunt: Can Women Stop War?

Introduction by Dean Alan Solomont, Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 | 4:15pm
Crane Room, Paige Hall

Ambassador Swanee Hunt is President of Hunt Alternatives Fund, which for more than three decades has advanced innovative and systemic approaches to social change at local, national, and global levels. As chair of the Fund's Institute for Inclusive Security, she conducts advocacy, training, and research in 40 countries to integrate women leaders into peace and security processes. In addition, the Fund focuses on combating the demand for purchased sex, achieving political parity for US women in high-level positions, supporting leaders of social movements, and strengthening youth arts organizations.

From 1993 to 1997, Hunt served as President Clinton's ambassador to Austria, hosting negotiations and international symposia focused on stabilizing the neighboring Balkan states. Dr. Hunt is the Eleanor Roosevelt Lecturer in Public Policy and founder of the Women and Public Policy Program at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.

This lecture is supported by the Diversity Fund of the AS&E Equal Educational Opportunity Committee. Additional sponsors include the Departments of Economics, Philosophy, and Political Science, the International Relations Program and the Program on Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, the School of Engineering, and the Tisch College.


Professor Lawrence Lessig: Standing Just Far Enough Outside

Tuesday, March 4, 2014 | 4:30pm
ASEAN Auditorium

Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service in coordination with The Department of Political Science, the Department of Philosophy, and the Communications and Media Studies Program will Present Professor Lawrence Lessig: Standing Just Far Enough Outside, Tuesday, March 4th, 4:30pm, ASEAN Auditorium.

On Tuesday, March 4th the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service will present a talk on institutional corruption by Professor Lawrence Lessig, Standing Just Far Enough Outside.

Professor Lessig is the Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership at Harvard Law School, and Director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University.

He was also a professor at Stanford Law School, where he founded the school's Center for Internet and Society, and at the University of Chicago.

Professor Lessig clerked for Judge Richard Posner on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and Justice Antonin Scalia on the United States Supreme Court. Lessig serves on the Board of the AXA Research Fund and on the advisory boards of Creative Commons and the Sunlight Foundation. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Association.

Professor Lessig holds a B.A. in economics and a B.S. in management from the University of Pennsylvania, an M.A. in philosophy from Cambridge University, and a J.D. from Yale University.

This event is supported by the Department of Political Science, Department of Philosophy, and the Communication and Media Studies Program.


Political Science Majors Event: "Explore a Major in Political Science"

Wednesday, February 26, 2014 | 12noon
Packard Hall, 2nd Floor
Lunch will be served

"What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality."
-- Plutarch


The Department of Political Science will host an event to introduce students to a major in Political Science. Students will be introduced to political science faculty and the subfields, discuss the Honors Thesis Program, opportunities to participate in Tufts in Washington, write for the PS Newsletter, publish a student research briefing, participate in our annual alumni-student outreach event, applying for internships, and explore a career in political science. In addition, there will be representatives from Pi Sigma Alpha and Tisch Library. For more information email Jeannine Lenehan, Communications Coordinator, Department of Political Science.


The Most Important Topic Political Scientists are Not Studying: Adapting to Climate Change

Wednesday, February 12, 2014 | 12:00-1:30 pm
Barnum Hall, Room 104
Presented by Pi Sigma Alpha

The world is being transformed by climate change. Even if today all countries could somehow immediately reduce greenhouse gas emissions, existing emissions guarantee continued climate change, and that climate change has considerable impact. Although we need to continue mitigation efforts (steps to reduce emissions) to minimize damage, the reality is that we also must learn to live in a world transformed by climate change – to "adapt," or reduce our vulnerability.

In this presentation, Professor Javeline will review the field of climate change adaptation and explore the important contributions to adaptation that could be made by political scientists.

Debra Javeline received her PhD from Harvard University and is currently an associate professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame. Trained as a specialist in the former Soviet Union and survey research methodology, she has become increasingly concerned about the climate crisis and now devotes a significant part of her research and teaching to understanding climate impacts and the possibilities for mitigation and adaptation. Recent and forthcoming articles include "Expert Opinion on Climate Change and Threats to Biodiversity" (Bioscience) and "The Most Important Topic Political Scientists Are Not Studying: Adapting to Climate Change" (Perspectives on Politics)."

"Repression and Activism among the Arab Spring's First Movers: Morocco's (Almost) Revolutionaries"

Adria Lawrence, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Department of Political Science, Yale University

Monday, December 2, 2013
By invitation only

The Department of Political Science and The Fletcher School will host Professor Adria Lawrence, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Department of Political Science, Yale University. Professor Lawrence will present Repression and Activism among the Arab Spring's First Movers: Morocco's (Almost) Revolutionaries. Tisch Library Research Guide: Adria Lawrence.

This event is by invitation only. For more information email Jeannine Lenehan, Communications Coordinator, Department of Political Science.


"No Exit from Pakistan: America's Tortured Relationship with Islamabad"

Dan Markey, Council on Foreign Relations Senior Fellow for India, Pakistan and South Asia

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 | 12noon-1:15pm
Barnum 008
Lunch will be served beginning at 11:30am, doors open at 11:55am, Roundtable discussion following event
(RSVP required for roundtable discussion. Seating is limited. Email Jeannine Lenehan)


The Department of Political Science will host a talk with Dan Markey, Council on Foreign Relations Senior Fellow for India, Pakistan and South Asia. Dan Markey will present No Exit from Pakistan: America's Tortured Relationship with Islamabad (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2014) on Wednesday, November 6, 2013, noon-1:15pm (Open Block), Barnum 008.

"No Exit from Pakistan: America's Tortured Relationship with Islamabad" tells the story of the tragic and often tormented relationship between the United States and Pakistan. Pakistan's internal troubles have already threatened U.S. security and international peace, and Pakistan's rapidly growing population, nuclear arsenal, and relationships with China and India will continue to force it upon America's geostrategic map in new and important ways over the coming decades. This book explores the main trends in Pakistani society that will help determine its future; traces the wellsprings of Pakistani anti-American sentiment through the history of U.S.-Pakistan relations from 1947 to 2001; assesses how Washington made and implemented policies regarding Pakistan since the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001; and analyzes how regional dynamics, especially the rise of China, will likely shape U.S.-Pakistan relations. It concludes with three options for future U.S. strategy, described as defensive insulation, military-first cooperation, and comprehensive cooperation. The book explains how Washington can prepare for the worst, aim for the best, and avoid past mistakes.

Daniel S. Markey, Council of Foreign Relations: Daniel S. Markey is a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), where he specializes in security and governance issues in South Asia. From 2003 to 2007, Markey held the South Asia portfolio on the Secretary's Policy Planning Staff at the US Department of State. Prior to government service, he taught in the Department of Politics at Princeton University, where he also served as executive director of Princeton's Research Program in International Security. Dr. Markey earned his bachelor's degree in international studies from The Johns Hopkins University, his doctorate in politics from Princeton University, and was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University's Olin Institute for Strategic Studies. Markey served as project director of the CFR-sponsored Independent Task Force Report on US Strategy in Pakistan and Afghanistan (2010). He has published articles in Foreign Affairs, The National Interest, The American Interest, Foreign Policy, and Security Studies among other journals. His commentary has been featured in many newspapers, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, and International Herald Tribune. He has been awarded grants from the MacArthur and Smith Richardson foundations to support his research, including regular trips to Pakistan and elsewhere in Asia.


Information Session for Tufts-in-Washington Program

Wednesday, September 18, 2013 | 12 noon
Packard Hall Conference Room
Pizza will be served

Come and inquire about our Tufts-in-Washington Program. Students need not be political science majors to participate. Pizza will be served. The Department of Political Science in conjunction with American University is hosting an information session on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 at noon in the Packard Hall Conference Room. The purpose of the Tufts-in-Washington program is to allow Tufts undergraduates to study our national government first-hand. Participating students attend the Washington Semester at American University, and may take one of two tracks: American National Politics or American Foreign Policy. We have made special arrangements with American University to provide Tufts students with the best possible learning experience available in a Washington semester. The program includes the equivalent of four courses, the cornerstone being an internship of the student's choosing, which is arranged soon after arrival in Washington. Students work two days a week at their internships.

Students need not be political science majors but they must have taken political science or international relations courses in the area they intend to pursue in Washington. Applicants may not apply before their fourth semester of college work; that is, students must be at least a first semester junior by the time they enroll in the program in Washington.

For more information please email Assistant Professor Dennis Rasmussen or Jeannine Lenehan, Communication Coordinator for the Department of Political Science.


2013 Constitution Day

A discussion with filmmaker Ken Burns regarding the documentary The Central Park Five

Tuesday, September 17, 2013 | 12:00-1:30 pm (Doors open at 11:45am)
Coolidge Room, Ballou Hall
Buffet lunch will be served.  This event is open to the public.

The Office of the President, the Office of Academic Affairs for Arts and Sciences, Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service, the Department of Political Science, and the Communications and Media Studies Program, in conjunction with The Constitution Project, Washington, DC will host a live webcast featuring filmmaker Ken Burns. The Constitution Project (TCP) will present its annual Constitutional Commentary Award to the award-winning filmmaker Ken Burns and his colleagues for their documentary The Central Park Five. Ken Burns will be in Washington, DC to accept the award and will participate in a Constitution Day panel discussion focusing on wrongful convictions, and more specifically, false confessions. The event will be webcast live from the Coolidge Room, Ballou Hall beginning at noon.

The Central Park Five tells the story of five teenagers from Harlem who were wrongly convicted of raping a woman in New York City's Central Park in 1989. The film chronicles the Central Park Jogger case from the perspective of the five teenagers whose lives were upended by the miscarriage of justice. There will be clips from the movie. Carrie Johnson from NPR will moderate. Panelists include: Ken Burns, Director and Producer of documentary films; Shawn Armbrust, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project; Saul Kassin, Distinguished Professor of Psychology, John Jay College; Jim Trainum, retired detective, Washington Metropolitan Police Department.

If you have questions regarding this event please email Jeannine Lenehan, Communication Coordinator for the Department of Political Science; Sarah Shugars, Communications Manager for Tisch College; or John Ciampa, Program Administrator for the Communications and Media Studies Program.

(Sponsored by: The Office of the President, the Office of Academic Affairs for Arts and Sciences, Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service, the Department of Political Science, and the Communications and Media Studies Program, in conjunction with The Constitution Project, Washington, DC.)

Watch video of event >




In The News

On July 17, 2014 Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down near the Ukraine-Russian border, killing the 298 passengers and crew. Pro-Russian separatists are widely believed to have used a surface-to-air missile to shoot down the plane, Professor Oxana Shevel explained in a guest-post for the Washington Post on July 18th [2014], Will the Malaysia Airlines tragedy change the trajectory of events in Ukraine? Professor Shevel, Associate Professor of comparative politics and the post-Communist region, explained that "the crash of Malaysia Airlines [flight MH17] over rebel-controlled area of eastern Ukraine thrust the conflict between the Ukrainian government and the Russia-backed rebels into renewed international focus (2014)." Read article >

On March 23, 2014 Aljazeera published an Op-ed by Associate Professor Oxana Shevel, How to Defeat Russia After Annexation of Crimea, what can Ukraine and the West do to contain Russia? Shevel discusses the recent annexation of Crimea and the lingering aftermath that has the West in a state of confusion as they scrambled to respond. Shevel states, "[Putin's] vision of Russia's success and source of pride for its citizens comes from it reclaiming its former imperial glory, including lost territories central to its imperial psyche. Western powers can do much to promote the attractiveness of an alternative model: a polity where people's self-worth and pride as citizens is derived not from geopolitical standing, landmass, or self-proclaimed spiritual superiority, but form a democratic system where individual rights and liberties are respected and where officials serve the public and not their pockets." Full Op-ed >
Professor Shevel is also an Associate at the Davis Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies and the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University.

On March 19, 2014 Associate Professor Oxana Shevel was a guest on Radio Islam. Host Matthew AbdulHaqq Niemi discussed with Shevel her March 3, 2014 article in the Washington Post, Who are the Crimean Tatars and why are they important? Download interview >
Professor Shevel is also an Associate at the Davis Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies and the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University.

In the March 5, 2014 edition of Tufts Now, reporter Marjorie Howard sat down with Associate Professor Oxana Shevel to discuss the political unrest in Ukraine in Ukraine Explained. Professor Shevel spoke candidly about the protests that led to the overthrow of the president, and what the future may hold.  Read article >
Professor Shevel is also an Associate at the Davis Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies and the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University.

In the March 3, 2014 edition of Tufts Now, reporter Marjorie Howard sat down with national security expert and Associate Professor of International Relations and Security Studies, Jeffrey Taliaferro, to discuss Edward Snowden and the changing landscape of surveillance as cyber-espionage and cyber-warfare begin to take center stage. "The Snowden incident raises troubling questions about how well contractors charged with dealing with complex information are monitored and vetted, not just by superiors in their own companies, but by superiors in the federal agencies," explained Professor Taliaferro. Full article >

In the March 1, 2014 online edition of The Washington Post Associate Professor of Comparative Politics and Post-Communist Region, Oxana Shevel, explains Who are the Crimean Tatars and why are they important?" Russia may be planning to take over Crimea, but several factors make it harder to believe that Russia will be able to establish control and to effectively annex Crimea as it did with South Ossetia, Abkhazia and Transnistria," Professor Shevel wrote. Read article >
Professor Shevel is also an Associate at the Davis Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies and the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University.

On February 27, 2014 Pearl Robinson, Professor of Comparative Politics, Africa, and African-American Politics addressed the Boston City Council and invited guests in a talk celebrating Black History Month and honoring the life of Nelson Mandela. The event was held at Boston City Hall.

In the February 20, 2014 edition of Tufts Now, Jeffrey Taliaferro, Associate Professor of International Relations and Security Studies spoke with reporter Marjorie Howard about Edward Snowden and surveillance, in Spy vs. Spy. "The Snowden incident raises troubling questions about how well contractors charged with dealing with complex information are monitored and vetted," Taliaferro explains. Read more >

Contributor to the February 12, 2014 edition of the Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, Associate Professor Oxana Shevel, details a pivotal moment in the development of Ukraine's current political situation in Truce Sets in Ukraine as Solution to the Crisis Remains Elusive. "On [January 26th] the Ukrainian national parliament met for an extraordinary session and cancelled a package of anti-democratic laws it had adopted with massive procedural irregularities on January 16 to ease tensions in the country," Professor Shevel explains. "Prime Minister Mykola Azrov, despised by protesters, stepped down the same day and President Yanukovych accepted his resignation. The following day, the parliament passed an amnesty bill for detained protestors. All of these events seem to spell good news for Ukraine's political future, but the government's willingness to embrace reform remains questionable at best." Read article >
Professor Shevel is also an Associate at the Davis Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies and the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University.

In the February 4, 2014 edition of thepsychreport, Immigration: The Disconnect Between Perception and Policy, reporter Max Nesterak spoke with Professor Deborah Schildkraut on American perception of the country's current immigration policy and regarding President Obama's comments on immigration in the State of the Union. Schildkraut explained that she was surprised how little President Obama discussed immigration reform. [However], "I don't think he thought there was much to be gained from laying out specifically what he wants." she explained. "Rather, he wants congress to really come together with something." More >

On February 2, 2014 Bob Oakes of WBUR spoke with Professor Jeffrey Berry on the how the age of talk radio and cable news is aimed more at insulting than informing. [Berry] "calls all of this the outrage industry and explains the rise of this media genre in his new book The Outrage Industry: Political Opinion Media and the New Incivility which he co-authored with Sarah Sobieraj." (see below) "This is a business that tries to polarize us-that's their function in the business world," Berry explained. "They make money by offering political commentary that gets riled up about the political system." More >

In the January 29, 2014 online edition of Aljazeera Associate Professor Oxana Shevel discusses the constitutional reforms that are needed for a lasting solution in Ukraine in Back from the brink in Ukraine? "Ongoing negotiations include a possible return to the 2004 Constitution and the parliamentary-presidential system," Professor Shevel explains. "The negotiators should consider the abolition of the post of presidency altogether and the establishment of a parliamentary form of government in Ukraine. This may be the best institutional solution for the long term for several reasons…" Read article >
Professor Shevel is also an Associate at the Davis Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies and the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University.

The January 8, 2014 issue of Tufts Now highlights Machiavelli's humanism in The Prince, and the ways that Vickie Sullivan and Ioannis Evrigenis, Professors of Political Theory, help readers to understand Machiavelli as the founder of modern day politics.
Full article >

Professor Vickie Sullivan and Katherine Balch, The Political Thought of Rousseau and Montesquieu, 2013 NPSA Conference Professor Vickie Sullivan and Katherine Balch, a senior double majoring in political science and history, presented a jointly authored paper on The Political Thought of Rousseau and Montesquieu at the Northeastern Political Science Association Conference in Philadelphia this past November. Katherine (Katie), T '14, was the only undergraduate to appear on their panel. Her participation in the conference was supported by the Undergraduate Research Fund at Tufts.

The paper originated as a final paper for Professor Sullivan's seminar on Montesquieu during the fall semester of 2012. Professor Sullivan had been mulling over this particular topic for several years and provided Katie with references, related to the topic, that she had collected.

Katie's seminar paper won the Belfer Prize for the best paper submitted in a political science course in academic year 2012-2013. Together they revised the paper to propose and present it at an academic conference. Professor Sullivan received a grant-in-aid from the Faculty Research and Award Committee to facilitate their collaboration over the summer of 2013. The Political Science Department also provided for Katie's summer work.

The commentator at The Convention was so enthusiastic about the paper's contributions to the scholarship that he recommended they submit it to a refereed journal. They are currently working on submission. Learn more about Vickie Sullivan and Katherine Balch.

Scott Dodds, A '10, has been awarded the Howard Penniman Scholarship for Graduate Study. The scholarship is award annually by Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society, up to five members entering graduate school in political science. Dodd is currently a masters student in social science at The University of Chicago.

Professor Schildkraut to deliver Constitution Day lecture. On Tuesday, September 17, 2013 Professor Deborah Schildkraut will deliver a Constitution Day lecture to the greater Lone Star College-Tomball community with her talk on "The Constitution and Human Nature."
More information >

On September 7, 2013, Tim Hartford of BBC Radio's More or Less: Behind the Stats interviewed Associate Professor Kelly Greenhill on The Death Toll in Syria and the prospect of western intervention after a chemical weapons attack to the east of Damascus. How many people were killed by this attack? The numbers vary greatly. The U.S. government reported 1,429 people including children and France reported 281 people died. "They are claiming to be answering the same question, but they are speaking to a different set of issues based on a different set of expectations." Hartford asked Professor Greenhill if the disparate numbers were tied to politics. "It's at least in large part about politics," Greenhill said, "and a large number is arguably, particularly important to the Obama administration as it's resting its case for military action." Listen to the complete interview >