Michele Claiborn

Michele Claibourn

Assistant Professor of Public Policy

Education & Training
Ph.D. Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison
B.A. Political Science, Rice University


As Director of Equitable Analysis for The Equity Center at UVA, Michele Claibourn leads the Center’s community-engaged data science work in support of a more equitable and just region. She has directed or supervised multiple community-based research projects in the Charlottesville community, including racial equity studies for the City of Charlottesville, Albemarle County, and the Thomas Jefferson Area Coalition for the Homeless. She served as a co-PI of the Collaborative Regional Equity Atlas Grant, working with local community partners to build information resources for promoting equity and is the lead architect of the Regional Equity Dashboard, which aims to provide tools for community members to engage the policy process and hold political leaders accountable. Her team’s work was featured by the 2020 Racial Equity Taskforce

In Batten, Professor Claibourn, a political scientist, teaches Imagining Equitable Policy, the Public Interest Data Lab, and Data Visualization with R, and has co-taught Saving Lives with Data. A first-gen college student, she helped develop and co-teach Project First Gen+ at UVA. She is a faculty affiliate in the Global Policy Center/Humanitarian Collaborative, and co-directs the Community Policy, Analytics, and Strategy (CommPAS) Lab.

Prior to joining The Equity Center and Batten, she founded and led the StatLab, teaching courses and workshops on computational text analysis, applied causal inference, data wrangling, and machine learning. She built and directed Research Data Services in the UVA Library. As a faculty in UVA’s Political Science Department, she taught graduate courses on probability and statistical theory, linear modeling, time series analysis, and maximum likelihood analysis along with substantive courses in political psychology and communication, the presidency and the public, and campaigns and elections. She served as an invited instructor at the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research’s Summer Program on Quantitative Methods of Social Research (2002-2005) teaching advanced maximum likelihood and mixed-effects modeling.

Her research publications include Presidential Campaigns and Presidential Accountability (University of Illinois Press 2011) as well as articles in The Journal of Politics, Political Research Quarterly, Political Communication, Political Behavior, Legislative Studies Quarterly, and PNAS.