D. Sunshine Hillygus

D. Sunshine Hillygus

Professor of Political Science

External Address: 
140 Science Drive, 203 Gross H, Box 90204, Durham, NC 27708
Internal Office Address: 
Box 90204, Durham, NC 27708-0204
(919) 660-4341
American Politics, Behavior Identities, Methods, Political Communication, Political Institutions

Professor Hillygus has published widely on the topics of American political behavior, campaigns and elections, survey methods, public opinion, and information technology and politics. She is co-author of The Persuadable Voter: Wedge Issues in Political Campaigns (Princeton University Press, 2008) and The Hard Count: The Social and Political Challenges of the 2000 Census (Russell Sage Foundation, 2006). From 2003-2009, she taught at Harvard University, where she was the Frederick S. Danziger Associate Professor of Government and founding director of the Program on Survey Research.


  • Ph.D., Stanford University 2003
  • M.A., University of Arkansas at Fayetteville 1998

Hillygus, DS, and Shields, TG. The persuadable voter: Wedge issues in presidential campaigns.: Princeton University Press, August 10, 2009.

Hillygus, DS, Nie, NH, Prewitt, K, and Pals, H. The Hard Count: The Political and Social Challenges of Census Mobilization. Russell Sage Foundation, April 13, 2006.

Frankel, L, and Hillygus, DS. "Niche Communication in Political Campaigns." Oxford Handbook on Political Communication. Ed. KH Jamieson and K Kenski. Oxford University Press, 2014.

Hillygus, DS, Jackson, N, and Young, M. "“Professional Respondents in Online Survey Panels,” Online Panel Research - A Data Quality Perspective." Online Panel Research - A Data Quality Perspective. Ed. RB M Callegaro, P Lavrakas, J Krosnick, J Bethlehem, and A Gritz. Wiley, 2014.

Hillygus, DS, and Burden, B. "Mass Polarization in the Bush Presidency." The Presidency of George W. Bush: Perspectives on the Forty-Third President of the United States. Ed. D Kelly and T Shields. Texas A&M Press, 2013.

Hillygus, DS. "The Practice of Survey Research: Changes and Challenges’." New Directions in Public Opinion Resesarch. 2011.

Bishop, B, and Hillygus, DS. "Campaigning, Debating, Advertising." Oxford Handbook on Media and Public Opinion. Ed. L Jacobs and R Shapiro. Oxford University Press (OUP), 2011.

Hillygus, DS. "The Need for Survey Reporting Standards in Political Science." The Future of Political Science: 100 Perspectives. 2009.

Hillygus, DS. "Campaign Effects on Vote Choice." Oxford Handbook on Political Behavior. 2009.

Holbein, JB, and Hillygus, DS. "Making Young Voters: The Impact of Preregistration on Youth Turnout." American Journal of Political Science 60.2 (March 1, 2016): 364-382. Full Text Open Access Copy

Aldrich, JH, Bishop, BH, Hatch, RS, Sunshine Hillygus, D, and Rohde, DW. "Blame, Responsibility, and the Tea Party in the 2010 Midterm Elections." Political Behavior 36.3 (September 2014): 471-491. Full Text

Frankel, LL, and Hillygus, DS. "Looking beyond demographics: Panel attrition in the ANES and GSS." Political Analysis 22.3 (January 1, 2014): 336-353. Full Text

Johnston, CD, Hillygus, DS, and Bartels, BL. "Ideology, the Affordable Care Act Ruling, and Supreme Court Legitimacy." Public Opinion Quarterly 78.4 (2014): 963-973. Full Text

Deng, Y, Hillygus, DS, Reiter, JP, Si, Y, and Zheng, S. "Handling attrition in longitudinal studies: The case for refreshment samples." Statistical Science 28.2 (May 1, 2013): 238-256. Full Text

Frankel, L, and Hillygus, DS. "Panel Attrition and the Survey Experience." Political Analysis (2013). (Academic Article)

Hillygus, DS. "The evolution of election polling in the United States." Public Opinion Quarterly 75.5 SPEC. ISSUE (December 26, 2011): 962-981. Full Text

Henderson, M, and Hillygus, DS. "The dynamics of health care opinion, 2008-2010: partisanship, self-interest, and racial resentment." Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law 36.6 (December 2011): 945-960. Full Text


Selected Grants

ANES WEB: American National Election Studies 2018-2021 awarded by Stanford University (Principal Investigator). 2018 to 2021

Integrating Multiple Data Sources to Account for Nonignorable Nonresponse awarded by National Science Foundation (Co-Principal Investigator). 2017 to 2019

Making Young Voters: Policy Reforms to Increase Youth Turnout awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2017 to 2019

The Link between Education, Engagement, and Well-being awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2014 to 2017

NCRN-MN:Triangle Census Research Network awarded by National Science Foundation (Co Investigator). 2011 to 2016

Multiple Imputation Methods for Handling Missing Data in Longitudinal Studies with Refreshment Samples awarded by National Science Foundation (Co-Principal Investigator). 2011 to 2014