About Events Batten Expert Chats: "Scoring Effectiveness in Congress" with Craig Volden and Alan Wiseman Batten Expert Chats: "Scoring Effectiveness in Congress" with Craig Volden and Alan Wiseman JULY 22, 2020 12:00 PM Watch Here WATCH What constitutes an effective lawmaker? The discourse around members of Congress once focused solely on party affiliations, but the legislative effectiveness scores developed by the Center for Effective Lawmaking, a joint venture between the Batten School and Vanderbilt University, are adding a new dimension to the conversation. For the latest edition of Batten Expert Chats, CEL co-directors Craig Volden and Alan Wiseman will speak and take questions on the origins of the scores they developed, what they mean for our political system, and how they’re currently being used. Join the conversation on Zoom. On Friday, August 14, Volden and Wiseman will headline the next BattenX module: “Moving Issues Forward in Congress.” This half-day course, scheduled from 11am to 2pm, will examine how legislation is changed and the future of effective legislatures. For more information, including how to participate, please visit the course registration page. Craig Volden Craig Volden is a professor of public policy and politics, with appointments in the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy and the Woodrow Wilson Department of Politics. He studies legislative politics and the interaction among political institutions, including within American federalism. Read full bio Alan Wiseman Vanderbilt Professor Wiseman's research agenda addresses the impact of political institutions on political actors' behavior and strategies, focusing substantively on legislative, electoral, and bureaucratic and regulatory politics in the United States. His current scholarship examines the impact of executive oversight of bureaucratic rulemaking and lawmaking in the United States and other developed democracies, and he is also writing a book on the causes and consequences of legislative effectiveness in the United States Congress, and studying the emergence and consequences of industry self-regulation in different product and service markets. Prior joining the faculty of Vanderbilt University, he served on the faculty of The Ohio State University, where he directed the undergraduate public policy minor in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. He has also been a visiting Associate Professor at Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management; and before entering the academy he served as a visiting economic scholar with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission Related Content Craig Volden Spatial Models of Legislative Effectiveness Research Spatial models of policymaking have evolved from the median voter theorem through the inclusion of institutional considerations such as political parties, committees, and various voting and amendment rules. Such models, however, implicitly assume that no policy is more effective than another at solving public policy problems and that all proposers are equally capable of advancing proposals. Party Calls and Reelection in the US Senate Research Minozzi and Volden advance the idea that a substantial portion of partisan voting activity in Congress is a simple call to unity that is especially easily embraced by ideological extremists. If correct, Minozzi and Volden’s findings should extend from the House to the Senate, despite differences in institutional structures and in tools at the disposal of party leaders across the two chambers. Scoring Effectiveness in Congress News What makes someone an effective lawmaker? Surprisingly, until Batten’s Craig Volden and Vanderbilt’s Alan Wiseman began discussing that question a little over a decade ago, we didn’t have a clear answer. Coronavirus policies spread quickly across the U.S. Are cities and states learning — or just copying? News As the novel coronavirus has spread across U.S. cities and states, so have public policies aimed at stopping the pandemic. Batten's Craig Volden and co-author Charles R. Shipan examine how some states have learned from others’ policy successes, while others simply copy their neighbors or even compete against them, and why that matters.