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Trump’s actions here are not some high-minded effort to protect national security by preventing careless people from having access to classified material. Nor are they merely an attempt to tidy up the messy files of too many people holding security clearances, as National Security Advisor John Bolton claimed. Rather, as Trump has candidly admitted, this was an attempt to use the power of the presidency to punish someone he did not like on policy grounds. Worse, as multiple reports have suggested, it may also have been an… read more about The Real Reasons Trump Was Wrong to Revoke Brennan’s Clearance - Peter Feaver writes for Foreign Policy »

The first day Allan Kornberg moved into his Duke University office in 1965, he brought his three young children with him, who immediately took to racing down the hallways. The noise brought out longtime political science Chairman Robert Rankin who demanded to know what was going on. Kornberg's son replied, "That's my daddy's office."  Like father, like son, Allan is remembered to have an attracting personality.  "I'll miss his big laugh," remembers Emerson Niou. After 43 years of service to the university, guiding the… read more about Allan Kornberg, beloved professor emeritus, passed away »

Paula D. McClain, professor of political science and dean of The Graduate School, has been elected as the next president of the American Political Science Association (APSA), the most prestigious academic organization in the discipline. McClain will serve as president-elect for a year in 2018-2019 before taking the reins as president for 2019-2020. In addition to her role as dean of The Graduate School and vice provost for graduate education, McClain is a professor of political science and public policy. She earned her B.A… read more about Paula McClain elected as next president of the American Political Science Association »

Gender balancing in the security sector is an increasingly common reform in postconflict countries, especially in the presence of peacekeeping missions. The UN has repeatedly stressed that increased representation of women in security forces (and other traditionally male-dominated institutions) helps improve overall peace and security for all. Our theoretical priors suggest that gender balancing may have a number of implications for processes that mediate larger state-building goals, including unit cohesion, operational… read more about International Gender Balancing Reforms - Kyle Beardsley et al. publishes new research »

At a time when even the wealthiest nations face problems of poverty, many analysts are concerned about creating jobs in the “new” economy. Are traditional anti-poverty programs up to the task? I don’t think so. Many people, from diverse viewpoints, are talking about a universal basic income (UBI) grant. UBI was recently tried in Finland, though it was discontinued. As a recent New York Times article pointed out, that effort was half-hearted. In California, the city of Stockton is piloting a program that will give 100… read more about Michael Munger write about universal basic income for The Hill »

President Donald Trump has told us that “trade wars are good, and easy to win.” He seems to have thought that just threatening to impose tariffs would bring other countries to their knees, since those countries need access to the vast U.S. market. But his global trade war isn’t going as planned. The threat and then the imposition of tariffs on goods that the U.S. imports — from China, Canada, Mexico and the countries of the European Union — have not induced those countries to capitulate to U.S. demands. Instead, the… read more about Trump's trade war is not going as planned - Grieco and Büthe write op ed for Newsday »

The country has been under a state of emergency for almost two years since the failed 2016 coup, but Erdogan said he would end it after the election. Under the new system, a state of emergency lasts for six months instead of three and Erdogan can declare one without needing the approval of parliament. That change takes away one of the last checks on the president’s power, Duke University professor of economics and political science Timur Kuran told The Media Line. All checks and balances are now gone. The only thing that… read more about Many Fear Erdogan's New Powers - Timur Kuran interviewed in The Jerusalem Post »

Christopher Johnston and his coauthors won the David O. Sears Book Award for 2018 for their work Open versus Closed: Personality, Identity, and the Politics of Redistribution.  Announced at the 41st annual scientific meeting of the International Society of Political Psychology, this award is given to "the best book published in the field of political psychology of mass politics, including political behavior, political values, political identities, and political movements, during the previous calendar year."  This… read more about Chris Johnston won the 2018 David O. Sears Book Award »

On June 28, 2018, the US Supreme Court denied requests by two death row inmates from Mississippi to have their cases heard. Justice Stephen Breyer dissented from these decisions, citing a recent work by Prof. Frank Baumgartner along with UNC undergraduate students Marty Davidson, Kaneesha Johnson, Arvind Krishnamurthy, and Colin Wilson on three different points. First, one of the inmates has been on death row for 42 years, and Breyer notes the research they conducted on exactly this topic. Second, he refers to their… read more about U.S. Supreme Court Justice cites co-authored work by Arvind Krishnamurthy  »

Thanks to Stormy Daniels, Harvey Weinstein and #MeToo, most of us are now familiar with agreements where one party purchases the other’s silence. But such nondisclosure agreements, also known as NDAs, aren’t limited to allegations of sexual misconduct, and often they involve public money. The agreements regularly undermine the accountability of the powerful and protection for the public. Nondisclosure agreements are more prevalent than you may think. More than one-third of U.S. employees are bound by NDAs of some kind,… read more about What We Don’t Know Can Hurt Us - Ruth Grant writes Wall Street Journal op ed »

"Kaufmann and Jardina’s work raises a crucial question: has traditional polling failed to capture the actual views of the public on immigration?" Ashley Jardina, a political scientist at Duke, argues in her 2017 paper “The White Backlash to ‘Crying Racism’: How Whites Respond to Calling Racial Preferences Racist” that Allegations of racism no longer work to reduce support for the target of the accusation. Instead, such accusations are now tantamount to ‘crying wolf’ and have the opposite of their intended effect — whites… read more about New York Times Opinion cites Ashley Jardina's research »

Peter Feaver, a Duke University political scientist, rejects the idea that changes in the GOP’s coalition have irreversibly shifted the party toward Trump-style isolationism and unilateralism. “The cost of alienating our allies … will start to mount,” said Feaver, who analyzed public opinion for Bush’s National Security Council. “It’s going to be harder and harder to sustain it.” Yet in recent days, the GOP’s internationalist voices have been stifled at every turn. Beyond Arizona Senator John McCain, stunningly few… read more about Trump foreign policy has reshaped GOP position? - Peter Feaver interviewed in The Atlantic »

Michael Munger joins host Frank Stasio to talk about his new book: Tomorrow 3.0: Transaction Costs and the Shared Economy (Cambridge University Press/2018) which describes a movement that Munger says will rival the Industrial Revolution. In the short term, he sees an acceleration in job loss with jobs being replaced by temporary gigs and a struggle to earn a living wage. In the long term, Munger believes this system of shared economy will foster a spirit of sharing, reduce the need for individual ownership of goods… read more about Michael Munger on NPR discusses the sharing economy »

What do apples, bourbon, pork, cranberries, and orange juice have in common with designer blue jeans, Harley-Davidsons, beer kegs, lamps, and washing machines? They’re all profitably exported to Canada, the European Union, and Mexico from U.S. districts and states where Republicans must win in November to keep their majority in the House and the Senate. They are also subject to “punitive” tariffs imposed (or about to be imposed) by these countries in retaliation against the 10 percent and 25 percent tariffs the Trump… read more about The coming trade war with Canada, Mexico, and Europe - Tim Büthe op ed »

The more intriguing question, then, is not whether these deals make sense, but why politicians and voters are so keen on them. “It’s a little baffling, given that there seems to be such consensus on these programs,” said Nathan Jensen, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin. He and Edmund Malesky at Duke University argue in a new book that much of what’s going on here is pandering by politicians. Voters want jobs, which are hard to deliver. Ribbon cuttings and splashy announcements about, say, a new Foxconn… read more about NYTimes Upshot features Malesky's research on pander incentives »

The faculty, staff, and students of political science are saddened at the news of the passing of J. Peter Euben, beloved Research Professor Emeritus of Political Science and Kenan Distinguished Faculty Fellow in Ethics.  Euben won five teaching awards across his career.  Writing for Duke Today, nearing his retirement, Peter reflected on his teaching.  "All this speaks to the importance of establishing a dialogue among the students and between them and me even in a class of 75. Of course, dialogue has become a… read more about Remembering Peter Euben »

Mike’s enormous career achievements and contributions stand out in three dimensions: (1) his pioneering work in several methodological areas (estimation of dynamics; observational dependence, especially spatial and network interdependence; out-of-sample forecasting; and statistical graphics, for examples); (2) the early, sustained, and great effects his methodological contributions have had on the subfields of international relations and comparative politics, especially in the democratic peace literature; and (3) his years… read more about Michael Ward is the honored recipient of The 2018 Political Methodology Career Achievement Award »

The definition of mentoring in itself is fairly simple: “to advise or train someone.” However, behind the simplicity of the definition lies an ambiguous process. Mentoring can take on various forms and approaches, ranging from teaching someone how to conduct a particular task to managing work/life balance. Mentors can be our teachers, our parents or relatives, or even good friends or colleagues. And since mentoring can be as simple as providing or receiving emotional support in times of need, sometimes people can be mentors… read more about Anh Do facilitates speed mentoring for graduate students »

Isak Tranvik has been awarded a Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellows from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.  "The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation has awarded 21 promising scholars Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships. The Newcombe Fellowship is the nation’s largest and most prestigious award for Ph.D. candidates in the humanities and social sciences addressing questions of ethical and religious values. Funded by the Charlotte W. Newcombe Foundation, the… read more about Isak Tranvik named a Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellows »

Matthew King, a senior majoring in Political Science, spoke to graduating classmates at Senior Class Day.  This event took place Friday, May 11, 2018 at Page Auditorium at Duke University. After graduation Matthew will be earning his Masters in International Security at Sciences Po's Paris School of International Affairs as an Émile-Boutmy Scholar. read more about Graduation Stories: "Warning! You are about to enter a magical place" »

In its 203rd year, Allegheny College will award honorary degrees to three distinguished scholars — each a graduate of Allegheny — at the college’s 2018 Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 12, at 2 p.m. In addition, a Scholarship Fund has been setup at Allegheny College for students pursuing research questions in the social sciences. “John Aldrich, Barbara Hotham Iglewski and Carol Reardon have reflected great honor on their alma mater through their scholarly accomplishments, their commitment to educating students and… read more about John Aldrich awarded honorary doctorate of humane letters from alma mater »

Munger, an economist and political science professor at Duke, explores the growing popularity of apps such as Uber and Airbnb and how these represents a fundamental change in transaction costs. Written for both general and specialist readers, the books shows the far-reaching consequences of the “sharing economy” and how reduced transaction costs may reshape the value of owning many things that we now consider essential. read more about Book Author Profiles: Michael Munger and 'Tomorrow 3.0' »

“It’s an emperor’s-new-clothes moment,” says Duke University political scientist Ruth Grant, author of “Hypocrisy and Integrity: Machiavelli, Rousseau, and the Ethics of Politics.” Much like the phenomenon of the ketman principle in totalitarian countries, Ms. Grant says that hypocrisy is also particularly common in liberal democracies like the United States, where fealty is paid to high moral ideals while the actual conditions are tied more to power and political pragmatism. For women more broadly, it may also be… read more about Assault allegations against former NY attorney general - Christian Science Monitor interviews Ruth Grant »

With “Why Parties Matter,” Aldrich, a professor of political science, and co-author John D. Griffin of the University of Colorado, Boulder, make the case that competition between political parties is an essential component of a democracy that is responsive to its citizens. Tracing the history of the parties through four eras -- the Democratic-Whig party era that preceded the Civil War; the post-Reconstruction period; the Jim Crow era, when competition between the parties virtually disappeared; and the modern era -- Aldrich… read more about Book Author Profiles: John Aldrich and 'Why Parties Matter' »

The Duke University Program in American Grand Strategy hosts ambitious ‘Staff Rides’ where students role play military and war-period characters alongside faculty and military experts to learn the stakes of war.  More than a dozen political science students and staff toured across Europe together.  Led by Professor Peter Feaver, students debate strategy from the perspective of embroiled contemporaries of war to learn the trust costs and sacrifices of leadership.   “The staff ride was created in the wake of the Napoleonic… read more about Duke University highlights the war studies journey of political science students »

In the middle of a landmass in the Northern Hemisphere bordered by oceans, people call themselves Americans. According to both their own laws and broader international ones, they are members of a group known as a nation-state – in this case the United States of America. The idea is the group shares common values, participates in a shared economic system and more or less agrees that its leader represents the group in international negotiations. But when did the concept of a nation-state first emerge? And is the political… read more about Is the Nation-State Still a Thing? Joseph Grieco on NPR »

"The discussion at this workshop will go beyond the phenomenon of whistleblowing, to look at how people overcome tendencies to be complacent, and the courage it takes to speak truth to power. Joining Kalven in the conversation will be Ruth Grant, Duke University Professor of Political Science and senior fellow at Duke’s Kenan Institute for Ethics, who is a visiting faculty member at the Institute this year. An ethicist and philosopher, Grant has written several works of political philosophy including Hypocrisy and… read more about Ruth Grant serves on "Complacency, Complicity, and Moral Courage" panel at the Chicago Institute for Pyschoanalysis »

Becher, Michael, Daniel Stegmueller, and Konstantin Kaeppner. “Local Union Organization and Law Making in the US Congress.” Forthcoming in Journal of Politics. The political power of labor unions is a contentious issue in the social sciences. Departing from the dominant focus on membership size, we argue that unions’ influence on national law making is based to an important degree on their local organization. We delineate the novel hypothesis that the horizontal concentration of union members within… read more about Spring 2018 Publications »

All across the Western hemisphere, satisfaction with democratic governments has decreased and voters abandon mainstream politicians and political parties. “Populist” dissatisfaction with what voters perceive unresponsive elites makes new political challengers thrive: “Right-wing” populist politicians appeal to the purity of the nation and oppose immigration and multiculturalism. “Left-wing” populists emphasize economic deprivation and growing inequality. This conference examines the dynamics of populist Left and Right… read more about New Workshop: Radical Party Challenges & Realignment in Advanced Democracies »

“Microtargeting is not something that’s new,” said Sunshine Hillygus, a professor of political science and public policy at Duke University, referring to the process of using personal information to craft personalized messages. She said the practice goes back to the late 1990s, but it was happening on postcards and through direct mail. Campaigns would maintain detailed “voter files,” but all the information was offline. Then Facebook came along. “It has been with Facebook that you have connected offline and online… read more about Sunshine Hillygus discusses Cambridge Analytica on Marketplace Tech podcast »