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David NickersonDavid Nickerson

David Nickerson (PhD, Yale University), an associate professor of political science who has taught at Notre Dame since 2005, was introduced to the Kellogg Institute through its lecture series.

Specializing in political behavior, research methodology, and experimental design, Nickerson is particularly interested in mobilization and campaign behavior, clientelism, and corruption. Focused mainly on the US, his research utilizes field experiments to study how organizations mobilize supporters and how behaviors diffuse through social networks.

Currently, in collaboration with several Latin American graduate students, he is attempting to measure the frequency of vote buying in eight Latin American countries, using an experimental technique to elicit truthful responses about an illegal and stigmatized behavior. He is also beginning a new project—with a new set of students—to determine the extent to which voters differentiate between types of corruption.

“The Institute is an exciting way to broaden my horizons intellectually and conduct some of my research in other countries,” he says. “My work has improved by working with the strong graduate students attracted to Kellogg and its vibrant community of scholars.”

Nickerson has published in the American Political Science Review, the American Journal of Politics, and the Journal of Politics, among other journals.




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The Kellogg Institute promotes scholarship, learning, and linkages that address issues of critical importance to our world. At the center of our interdisciplinary community’s work are two key themes: democratization and human development. 

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