University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Ray La Raja

Professional Title: 

Professor of Political Science
Co-Director of UMass-Amherst Poll


On Leave Fall 2023 Spring 2024

Phone Number: 

WhatsApp +1 (413) 230-0138



Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley; Master in Public Policy, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard


Ray La Raja's areas of expertise include political parties, interest groups, campaign finance, elections, political participation, American state and local politics, public policy and political reform. He is co-author with Brian Schaffner and Jesse Rhodes of Hometown Inequality: Race, Class, and Representation in American Local Politics (Cambridge University Press 2020).  He previously co-authored with Brian Schaffner, Campaign Finance and Political Polarization: When Purists Prevail (Univ. of Michigan Press 2015), which was the winner of the Virginia Gray Best Book Award from the American Political Science Association's State Politics and Policy section. He is co-founder and former co-editor of The Forum: A Journal of Applied Research in Contemporary Politics and a member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Campaign Finance Institute. He was past president of the Political Organizations and Parties section of the American Political Science Association. He is co-founder and co-director of the UMass Poll, which conducts public opinion research in Massachusetts and the United States to inform policymaking.  

Curriculum Vitae: 

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  • Political Science