Washington DC

The Research Workshop in American Politics brings together faculty and graduate students in American politics to share their work in an informal setting. The seminar meets weekly and covers a broad range of topics in American politics. It is primarily a forum for the presentation and discussion of research in progress by graduate students at UC Berkeley. Students who take the workshop for credit as PS 291 will make at least one presentation of work-in-progress per semester and will serve as a discussant for another student or faculty member's presentation at least once per semester. There are also occasional presentations by invited speakers.

This seminar is closed to the public, and attendance is up to the professor’s discretion. For more information, contact Matt Brundage (matt_brundage [at] berkeley.edu).

Past Events

Flyer for "Breaking the Two-Party Doom Loop: The Case for Multi-Party Democracy in America"
Wednesday, February 19, 2020
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Title: Breaking the Two-Party Doom Loop: The Case for Multiparty Democracy in America Abstract: American democracy is at an impasse. After years of zero-sum partisan trench warfare, our political institutions are deteriorating. Our norms are collapsing. Democrats and Republicans no longer merely argue; they cut off contact...
Wednesday, February 12, 2020
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Title: Decisionmaking in Street-Level Bureaucracies: Evidence from Residential Burglary Investigations Abstract: In the face of excess service demand and little direct supervision, how do streetlevel bureaucrats decide which clients receive thorough services, and which receive the minimum required? Efforts to answer this...
Wednesday, September 18, 2019
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Title: Resistance and the Rule of Law Abstract: Both preceding and following the American Revolution, 18th century America saw repeated outbreaks of violent protests, called regulator conflicts, directed by small-scale farmers against local colonial and (later) state or federal elites. Yet, after about 1800, these...
Wednesday, September 4, 2019
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Title: Before Reagan: The Development of the Partisan Divide on Abortion Abstract: What explains the alignment of anti-abortion positions within the Republican party? I explore this development among voters, activists and elites before 1980. By 1969-1970, anti-abortion attitudes among ordinary voters correlated with...
Wednesday, January 24, 2018
12:00pm to 2:00pm
Political parties around the world use varying methods to recruit activists, select candidates, and allocate resources. But our knowledge about how these rules impact voting behavior is limited. This paper presents a spatial model examining how party institutions shape party, candidate positions, and electoral success. In...
Wednesday, August 16, 2017
12:00pm to 1:30pm
"Malice and Stupidity: Outgroup Motive Attribution and Affective Polarization" Abstract: Affective polarization has steadily increased over the past decades, weakening voters’ willingness to cross party lines, support bipartisan compromise, and consider information from outgroup sources. Existing scholarship on the reason...
Wednesday, August 9, 2017
12:00pm to 1:30pm
"Responsiveness and Election Cycles in the Permitting of Housing" Abstract: How responsive are elected officials to the policy preferences of their constituents? Studies of federal and state outcomes show that policy often does not align with public opinion. Votes on the policies measured in these studies are relatively...
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Abstract: Political scientists often characterize state and local governments as marginal and highly constrained in policymaking. This project, however, suggests that in recent decades state governments have moved from the margins to the center of partisan battles over the direction of U.S. public policy. I use novel...
Wednesday, July 26, 2017
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Abstract: At some times in American history, national political parties incorporate heterogeneous geographic and ideological constituencies (like Northern and Southern Democrats in the mid-twentieth century), while at other times, political parties are ideologically unified and geographically concentrated. We refer to the...
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Conducting representative surveys has become increasingly hard and expensive. In this presentation, we report on an inexpensive approach: emailing registered voters. Almost 40% of registered voters in California listed an email address when registering to vote and the law allows us to contact them for surveys. With a small...
Wednesday, July 5, 2017
12:00pm to 1:30pm
The Berkeley IGS Poll, housed within IGS’s newly established Jack Citrin Center for Public Opinion Research, completed another of its periodic statewide surveys of the California public in May. The May Berkeley IGS Poll covered a range of different political and public policy issues facing the state and the nation. Mr...