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“People cannot fathom how much of a mental game boxing is,” says Josue “Josh” Lopez ’13 (legal studies and political science), captain of the UMass Amherst Boxing Team and president of the UMass Amherst Boxing Club. “It is not like the movies where it is glorious and you always win so long as you have that two-minute training scene with ‘Eye of the Tiger’ playing in the background. …The pressure of engaging in one-on-one battle, where one man gets his hand raised, where there is no second place, only one winner and one loser [is indescribable].”

The Department of Political Science has released its 2010-2011 Annual Report. The report highlights some of the key honors, awards, and achievements of the department's faculty and students over the past academic year and recognizes donors who have made so many of the department's activities possible.

Read the complete report here.

Peter Haas, Professor of Political Science, has been selected as a Fellow in the Interdisciplinary Seminar in the Humanities and Fine Arts (ISHA) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst for 2011-2012. The fellowship is within the ISHA Seminar on Transformations, an interdisciplinary intellectual community which explores how the concepts and experience of politics, society, culture, and science have changed over time. The group asks,

Jillian Schwedler, Associate Professor of Political Science, and author of Faith in Moderation: Islamist parties in Jordan and Yemen, was featured on in a discussion about the current upheavals in the Arab world. is an online forum featuring informal “diavlogs" -- or video blogs --  between two experts connecting over their personal webcams.

Political Science Professor Peter Haas gave a plenary lecture on "conceptualizing and problematizing" the role of experts at the "Irrelevant, Advisors or Decision-Makers? The Role of ‘Experts’ in International Decision-Making” research seminar at the Erasmus School of Law, in Rotterdam, Netherlands, on June 24th-25th, 2011. 

The World Economic Forum's Global Advisory Council on the Future of Government, a council chaired by political science professor Jane Fountain, released The Future of Government: Lessons Learned from around the World. The report highlights best governance practices from around the world and will be presented at a high-level dinner with seven heads of state and government, key ministers and representatives from international institutions, business and academia.

Read the complete report here.

Professor Charli Carpenter, Associate Professor of Political Science at UMass Amherst, along with several graduate and undergraduate political science students, published new report on agenda-setting in transnational advocacy groups.

Leah Wing and Ethan Katsh were invited participants at the United Nations Online Dispute Resolution Working Group May 23-27, 2011 in New York City. Their paper, "Creating a cross-border online dispute resolution data exchange system" explored the complexity of designing and implementing an electronic, international conflict resolution system.

When alumni reflect on their time at UMass Amherst, they often think of the life-long friendships forged in dormitories and classrooms, late night study sessions, challenging classes, and even our award-winning dining halls. Or, if they are like Steve Etkin (’81, Political Science), they think of favorite professors. 

Although Thanksgiving may seem far away, the UMass Amherst Mock Trial Team is already busy planning its annual Thanksgiving Classic Tournament -- And they need your help!

Political Science and Legal Studies alumni are invited to participate in the tournament as judges. Judges will assess the competitor's overall performance--including argument skills, presentation, and articulation--and help to determine winners for each round. Alums with all types of law backgrounds are encouraged to participate.