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Research Centers

Faculty in Political Science and Legal Studies are affiliated with several research centers across campus including: 

Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies

The Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies is devoted to promoting research, training, and public engagement on the histories, cultures, and politics of Latin American and Caribbean peoples across the Americas and throughout the world.  Sonia Alvarez is the Director of CLACLS, with affiliates including Angelica Bernal and Carlene Edie.

Science, Technology and Society Initiative

The Science, Technology and Society Initiative was established to promote multidisciplinary collaboration among the natural, physical and social sciences, engineering and public policy. Directed by Jane Fountain, STS is a hub for interdisciplinary research on the Internet and society, the societal implications of nanotechnology, and ethics. STS faculty affiliates include MJ Peterson (co-PI of the International Dimensions of Ethics Education grant). View all the STS research and projects.

National Center for Digital Government

The National Center for Digital Government conducts research at the intersection of technology, governance, and institutions. Jane Fountain is the Director.

UMass Poll

The UMass Poll is an effort by scholars at UMass Amherst to study public opinion about a variety of political and social questions affecting the New England region. UMass Poll is directed by Brian SchaffnerTatishe Nteta, and Ray La Raja.

National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution

The National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution (NCTDR) supports and sustains the development of information technology applications, institutional resources, and theoretical and applied knowledge to better understand and manage conflict. The center is directed by Ethan Katsh, Professor Emeritus of Legal Studies, and Leah Wing, Senior Lecturer of Legal Studies in Political Science.

UMass Computational Social Science Initiative

The UMass Computational Social Science Initiative is a cross-disciplinary, collaborative group designed to address the challenges and opportunities presented by collecting, storing, and analyzing large scale data related to the social world. Affiliated faculty include Jane Fountain, Peter Haas, Brian Schaffner, John Hird, Ray La Raja, MJ Peterson, Meredith Rolfe, and Leah Wing.

Amherst Program in Critical Theory

The Amherst Program in Critical Theory brings together faculty from UMass Amherst and Amherst College to explore the scholarly work that seeks to give desire intelligibility, depth, shape, and reality. Founding UMass Amherst faculty include Nick Xenos and Yasmeen Daifallah.