The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

Search Google Appliance



Glen Gordon, former university provost, dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and chair of the political science department, died at the age of 88 on Friday, June 12.

Paul Collins was elected President of the Consortium for Undergraduate Law and Justice Programs. The Consortium is the world’s largest organization for colleges and universities that have undergraduate programs focused on the interdisciplinary study of law and justice. It serves as a clearinghouse for information about teaching in and administering these programs and hosts a biennial conference on legal studies undergraduate education, among other activities.

Tatishe Nteta, associate professor of political science and director of the UMass Amherst Poll, is quoted in a column arguing the American electorate is undergoing a surprising leftward shift five months before the November election. Nteta says, “We are witnessing how social movement activity and public opinion are now driving elite conservative behavior.”

Professor Brenda K. Bushouse of the UMass Amherst School of Public Policy and Department of Political Science has been awarded a two-year Learning Sciences Exchange fellowship for her work on early childhood policy. The fellowship is a partnership of the Jacobs Foundation, New America, and the International Congress of Infant Studies.

Jane Fountain gave a keynote address at the international conference of the Digital Government Society, DG.O 2020 on June 16. Titled "The Moon, the Ghetto and Artificial Intelligence: Enacting Technology" it examines systemic bias in data and in machine learning algorithms used increasingly in government decision making. These embedded biases exacerbate inequalities. The talk is available at


Virtual HDRO Seminar on: "International environmental cooperation and sustainability Within a constructivist framework" by Professor Peter Haas.

What does Constructivism tell us about the conditions under which effective international environmental cooperation occurs? What are the policy interventions by which international environmental cooperation and sustainability may be improved? This seminar will explain Constructivism’s contribution (from international relations theory) to understanding international environmental cooperation with the help of empirical examples. The record of international environmental cooperation is varied, but there are more successes than are generally acknowledged (for instance Mediterranean pollution control, Stratospheric Ozone protection, European Acid Rain governance). The successful cases artfully combine institutional design with the provision of organized scientific knowledge.

The College of Social and Behavioral Science has created a dedicated page on their website for COVID-19 social science research. The research compiled has been conducted by SBS faculty, graduate students, and recent alumni. This updating list of scholarship aims to provide awareness of quality social science research and to inform robust public discourse on the impacts of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Political science major Kenneth Amoah is leading a group of college students in their home town of Worcester in a campaign to increase voter registration and turnout.

Professor Jamie Rowen is featured in Al Jazeera's article for discussing the future of the Taiwan Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Over the course of nearly 50 years at UMass Amherst, Sheldon Goldman has become one of the nation's leading experts on the politics of judicial selection and confirmation. In the 1960s, he was one of the first scholars who sought to expand traditional public law approaches to the study of the judiciary and his research effectively shifted the focus of federal court scholarship from a singular examination of the Supreme Court to a broader and more inclusive study of Law and the Courts.