Areas of Research
The field of American Politics at Stanford includes the study of Congress, the bureaucracy, interest groups, the Presidency, voting, public opinion and participation, race and ethnicity; includes, among other perspectives, rational choice, historical, and behavioral perspectives; and encompasses, among other methods, quantitative analysis of aggregate data, qualitative fieldwork, survey research and randomized experiments.
The field of Comparative Politics at Stanford includes area studies, comparative political economy, the study of ethnic conflict, and institutions. Our faculty are experts in Western and Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
International Relations at Stanford comprises the study of all manner of global and regional political problems, including armed conflict in its various manifestations; the politics of international trade, finance, and the environment; nuclear weapons, WMD proliferation, and the threat of terrorism; and the design and functioning of international institutions and international law. Methods of analysis are diverse, tailored to the problem and empirical opportunities.
The field of Political Methodology includes training in statistics, econometrics and formal theory; reviewing and developing new methods for the scientific study of politics; has particular emphases in Bayesian statistical inference, causal inference, computationally-intensive approaches to statistical inference, the design and analysis of experiments, game theory, the graphical display of quantitative information, sampling for survey-based research, the analysis of spatial data, the statistical analysis of text.
Political Theory at Stanford approaches the study of justice, legitimacy, and power by conjoining normative theory (reflection on political values), positive theory (study of how values can be achieved by institutions), and the intellectual history of political thought (from Plato to Rawls). Among the topics with which our faculty and students are concerned are democracy, equality, rule of law, global justice, international relations, realism and idealism, education, deliberation, institutional innovation, and the organization of knowledge.