Posts Tagged with
Political Science


As President-elect Joe Biden’s cabinet nominees have been named, much of the discussion has been about their ideological leanings. In an article for The Hill, Batten's Craig Volden and Vanderbilt University's Alan E. Wiseman, co-directors of the Center for Effective Lawmaking, outline why these ideological discussions are too narrow a focus.


In commentary compiled by the Miller Center, Batten Professors Jennifer Lawless, Margaret Foster Riley, Todd Sechser, and Craig Volden weigh in on the 2020 election, offering updates on the latest developments.

Early voting in Virginia began on Sept. 18 and voters have been lining up ever since. (Photo by Ziniu Chen, University Communications)

Batten's Jennifer Lawless, along with William Antholis, and Kyle Kondik, discuss how mail-in and absentee votes are counted, why results could be delayed this year, and how the pandemic has affected the election.


Historic harms—discriminatory laws, policies, and practices, affect public perception of governmental institutions and their public administrators. Batten's Brian N. Williams speaks to how we could change American institutions and their public servants in the face of these harms.

The U.S. Capitol on Monday. (Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg News)

Batten’s Craig Volden and Vanderbilt’s Alan Wiseman, co-directors of the Center for Effective Lawmaking, find that members of Congress are becoming less specialized and in turn, less effective. How do we encourage more expertise and reverse the trend?


Six Batten students completed public service-focused internships supported by the Frederic S. Bocock Fellowship this summer. Through the generosity of Fred and Mary Buford Hitz, the Bocock Fellowship was created to advance the careers of Batten students in public service, specifically through governmental internship opportunities.


Voting by mail is a safe way to cast a ballot during the current pandemic, and does not benefit either political party, according to Batten's John Holbein.

Voting by mail hasn’t given a big advantage to one political party, but Republican rhetoric could change the dynamic for November’s election. ALYSSA POINTER/ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION VIA AP

In the U.S., the coronavirus crisis has thrust a typically wonky debate—the effectiveness of mail-in voting—into the political spotlight. Republicans, led by President Donald Trump, this week again warned that expanding the use of mail-in ballots could give Democrats an edge in the November elections. Now, a study from Batten’s John Holbein and Brigham Young University political scientist Michael Barber suggests there’s little historical evidence to support that fear.

Michele Claiborn

Michele Claibourn, a political scientist and statistician, has 20 years of experience teaching, leading, and managing research and data science teams, most recently in building and leading the Research Data Services & Social, Natural, and Engineering Sciences team in the UVA Library, where she serves as Director.


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.