Faculty Profile

Christine Mahoney

Associate Professor of Public Policy and Politics

Photo ofChristine  Mahoney
Garrett L020C

Dr. Mahoney's research focuses on advocacy and activism; specifically she studies the framing, messaging and strategic decisions of civil society organizations seeking to change public policy. She also directs the Social Entrepreneurship@UVA Initiative.

She is currently working on two large projects. The first looks at global advocacy on behalf of the displaced; studying how organizations at multiple levels of governance attempt to fight for the rights of those forced to flee their homelands due to ethnic and political violence. This research is based, in part, on fieldwork in 7 of the largest protracted displacement crises worldwide (Bhutan, Burma, Colombia, Croatia, Sri Lanka, Somalia and Uganda).  

The second is a NSF-funded project using computer-automated content analysis to better understand what types of political frames are successful in shifting public policy debates. This project is based on the textual analysis of thousands of documents put forward in public policy debates in the European Union by hundreds of advocates and interest groups.

Her book Brussels vs. the Beltway: Advocacy in the United States and the European Union (Georgetown University Press, 2008) is the first large-scale comparative study of lobbying in the US and the EU. She is the co-chair of the ECPR Standing Group on Interest Groups; and recipient of the 2011 Emerging Scholar Award from the American Political Science Association's Political Organizations & Parties section.

Selected Recent Publications


  • 2011 Emerging Scholar Award - Political Organizations and Parties section of the APSA
  • 2011 National Science Foundation Grant - Award ID: 1102978, PI: Mahoney. $300,000 to University of Virginia for support of the project entitled "Framing Policy Debates in the European Union"

Related News & Events

Politico Quotes Professor Mahoney on EU Lobbying in Brussels read more »

New Program Allows Any Undergrad to Minor in Entrepreneurship read more »

SE@UVA Welcomes Mandela Washington Fellows read more »

Professor Mahoney Gives Recommendations on Lobbying read more »

SE@U.Va. Welcomes John Kluge Jr. read more »

Social Entrepreneurship @ U.Va. Joins Impact Business Leaders Effort read more »

Students Create Socially Minded Ventures at ‘3 Day Startup’ read more »

Figure 1 from the article indicates the names of most prolific scholars. This includes both well-established scholars such as Justin Greenwood, Jan Beyers, David Coen and Rainer Eising, and the names of younger scholars such as Christine Mahoney and Heike Kluver. Authorship is predominately European, with only three American academics publishing more than three articles in this field (Christine Mahoney, Frank R. Baumgartner and David Lowery) read more »

Now Mahoney, along with students and other young faculty, is seeking funding to grow the initiative into a full-fledged program with an endowed chair. Over time, “I’ve become more and more convinced that we can achieve social justice through direct action,” she said. read more »

From day one, students in Christine Mahoney’s Sustainable Global Entrepreneurship class have employed different design thinking models to explore how best to launch social ventures, spur innovation and generate unique solutions to pressing global issues. Through case studies, simulations and a variety of guest speakers, students were able to master the tools necessary to become effective entrepreneurs. But how do these lessons transfer outside of the classroom and into the real world? Upon visiting Hub Accra in Ghana, their new skills were put to the test. read more »