During the senior year, each student writes a thesis. The senior thesis is expected to make an original (or otherwise distinctive) contribution to broader knowledge in the field in which the student is working.
It is important that the thesis be situated explicitly in relation to existing published literature. The senior thesis must be judged satisfactory by two members of the faculty, at least one of whom must be a member of the Department of Politics.
It is common, but by no means required, for junior paper topics, especially in the spring term, to serve as starting points for a senior thesis topic. Your senior thesis may expand upon ideas that you explored in the JP. You may draw on and cite your own JP just like you would use other resources. In addition, you may re-use a limited portion of your JP in your senior thesis; for instance, the literature review could be re-used across the two. Whenever material from the JP is re-used, you must add a footnote noting the duplication across the JP or senior thesis. Note this policy does not affect the standard university guidelines for attributing ideas and research findings, whenever appropriate. The same policy holds with respect to incorporating the Fall junior research prospectus into either the Spring JP or senior thesis.
The Department encourages students to use the summer between junior and senior year for work on the senior thesis.
The length of a senior thesis is generally about 100 double-spaced pages and rarely under 80 pages. No thesis should be longer than 125 pages, including appendices. (This limit does not include the ancillary pages for the title, dedication, table of contents, abstract, bibliography and honor code statement.) Any pages after 125 may or may not be read by the second reader. A thesis longer than 125 pages will not be considered for Politics thesis prizes.
Also, seniors are required to prepare and present a professional poster describing their senior thesis results.
|Advisors||Availability||Fields of Study||Areas of Expertise|
|Faisal Z. Ahmed||Available||International Relations, Political Economy||Political Economy, International Economics and Politics|
|Charles Beitz||Available||Political Theory||Contemporary Political Thought, Democratic Theory, Global Political Theory, Theories of Human Rights, Norms in International Relations|
|Nancy Bermeo||Available||Comparative Politics||Regime Change, Political Parties, Political Mobilization, Democracy|
|Greg Conti||Available||Political Theory||History of Political Thought, Democratic Theory, Representation, Freedom of Speech|
|Rafaela Dancygier||Full||Comparative Politics||Representation, Immigration, Electoral Cleavages, Discrimination|
|Aaron Friedberg||Available||International Relations||International Security, Globalization, Political Economy, East Asia, Foreign and Defense Policy|
|Paul Frymer||Full||American Politics, Public Law||American Political Institutions, Law, Parties and Organizations, Civil Rights and Race, Labor and Employment, Historical Institutionalism|
|Robert P. George||Available||Political Theory, Public Law||Philosophy of Law, Constitutional Interpretation, Civil Liberties, Moral and Political Philosophy, Bioethics, Law and Religion, Natural Law Theory|
|Germán Gieczewski||Full||Formal Theory & Quantitative Methods, Political Economy||Political Economy, Game Theory, Networks, Information Transmission|
|G. John Ikenberry||Available||International Relations||International Relations Theory, U.S. Grand Strategy, International Organizations, International Order, Liberalism and International Relations|
|Marzenna James||Available||International Relations||Case Study Methods, Economic Power in Central and Eastern Europe, Russian Foreign Policy|
|Ethan Kapstein||Full||International Relations||International Political Economy, Economic Development, U.S. Foreign Policy, Conflict|
|Patricia A. Kirkland||Full||American Politics||Urban Politics, State and Local Politics, Representation|
|Melissa Lane||Available||Political Theory||Ancient Greek and Roman Political Thought, Plato, Aristotle, Climate Change|
|Frances Lee||Available||American Politics||Congress, Political Parties, Policymaking|
|Melissa M. Lee||Full||Comparative Politics, International Relations||Statebuilding, State Capacity, Sovereignty, Political Development, International Intervention|
|John B. Londregan||Full||International Relations, Formal Theory & Quantitative Methods||South America, Political Economy, Electoral Politics, Text as Data|
|Stephen Macedo||Available||Political Theory||Citizenship and Civic Education, The Constitution, Marriage and Family, Immigration, Diversity, Civil Liberties, Free Speech and Hate Speech|
|Nolan McCarty||Full||American Politics||American Politics, Political Institutions, Political Polarization, Economic and Social Inequality, Political Economy of Financial Markets|
|Corrine McConnaughy||Full||American Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Identity||American Politics, Gender and Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Politics, American Political Development, Democratization, Social Movements and Protests, Policymaking, Social Identities, Federalism, State and Local Politics, Voting Rights, Political Decisionmaking|
|Tali Mendelberg||Available||American Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Identity||Political Communication, Race, Ethnicity and Politics, Public Opinion, Political Psychology, Experimental Methods, Gender and Politics|
|Andrew Moravcsik||Available||International Relations||European Union Politics, International Relations Theory, Transatlantic Relations, International Human Rights, Qualitative Methods, International Organizations, International Law|
|Layna Mosley||Available||International Relations, Political Economy||International Political Economy, Globalization, International Finance, Labor and Employment, Human Rights, Multinational Corporations, Global Supply Chains, International Trade|
|Jan-Werner Mueller||Full||Political Theory||Democratic Theory, Constitutionalism, European Union, Politics and Religion|
|Grigore Pop-Eleches||Available||Comparative Politics||Comparative Political Behavior, Authoritarian Politics, Historical Legacies, Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union, Latin America|
|Markus Prior||Available||American Politics||Public Opinion, Media and Politics, Political Involvement, Elections, Politics of Time|
|Kristopher Ramsay||Available||International Relations, Formal Theory & Quantitative Methods, Political Economy||Violent Conflict, War, Strategy, Political Economy, Environmental Politics|
|Marc Ratkovic||Full||Formal Theory & Quantitative Methods||Causal Inference, Political Methodology|
|Andrew Reynolds||Full||Comparative Politics||Comparative Politics, LGBTQ Politics, Queer Politics, Human Rights, African Politics, Comparative Politics of the Middle East, Electoral Systems, Democratic Design, Democratic Consolidation, Gender and Politics, Transgender Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Politics|
|LaFleur Stephens-Dougan||Available||American Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Identity||Racial Attitudes, Public Opinion, Black Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Politics, Political Communication, Experimental Methods|
|Anna Stilz||Available||Political Theory||Political Membership, Authority and Political Obligation, Nationalism and Self-Determination, Rights to Land and Territory, Collective Agency, Modern Political Thought|
|Rory Truex||Full||Comparative Politics||Chinese Politics, Authoritarianism, Repression, Human Rights|
|Guadalupe Tuñón||Available||Comparative Politics, Political Economy||Comparative Politics, Political Economy, Politics and Religion, Judicial Politics, Latin American Politics|
|James Raymond Vreeland||Full||Comparative Politics, International Relations||International Political Economy, International Organizations, Democratization, Transparency|
|Leonard Wantchekon||Full||Comparative Politics, Formal Theory & Quantitative Methods||Political Economy, Elections, Democratization, Governance|
|Ismail White||Full||American Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Identity||Race, Ethnicity and Politics, Racial Attitudes, American Politics, Political Behavior, Public Opinion, African American Politics|
|Keith E. Whittington||Available||American Politics, Public Law||American Constitutional Politics and History, Constitutional Theory, American Political Development, American Political Thought, Politics of Law and Courts, Presidential Politics, Federalism|
|Jennifer Widner||Available||Comparative Politics||Public Management, State Capacity, Judicial Politics, Public Law, African Politics, Public Goods Provision, Politics of Reform, Disaster Response, African Politics|
|Lauren A. Wright||Full||American Politics||Media and Politics, Executive Branch Politics and Policymaking, Public Opinion, Gender and Politics, Celebrity Politics|
|Xu Xu||Available||Comparative Politics, Political Economy||Information Transmission, Repression, Chinese Politics, Authoritarianism, Political Economy of Development|
|Deborah Yashar||Full||Comparative Politics, Race, Ethnicity and Identity||Regime Politics, Ethnic Politics and Social Movements, Political Violence, State Formation, State Capacity, Latin American Politics|