I am a political scientist at Denison University directing the Data for Political Research program and specializing in religion and politics, social networks, gender and politics, and political behavior. I am an affiliated scholar with Public Religion Research Institute and the editor of the Religious Engagement in Democratic Politics series with Temple University Press. I was the coeditor of Politics & Religion (2011-2016). And I blog primarily for religioninpublic.blog, but did for 538, the Monkey Cage, and others.
I’m interested in a lot of things, but especially the apolitical roots of political engagement. My religion and politics work, centered in the US, primarily investigates exposure and adoption processes – how religious communities provide political information and how members make sense of and use that information. I, therefore, examine social networks in churches, clergy political speech and engagement, small group interactions, and as well as experimental results regarding how individuals react to religious cues used by political actors and political cues used by religious actors. Jake Neiheisel just published a review article of (mostly) my work in Advances in Political Psychology called “The Religious Communication Approach and Political Behavior.”
I explore how individuals construct and use their social networks differently, with special interest in how the social psychology of gender structures social network influence and how associations drive social contact. I am also interested in how individuals connect with and evaluate interest groups. And lately I’ve trained attention on social science disciplines – what shapes how we conduct our careers, especially focused on gender gaps. That’s resulted in a book with Amy Erica and Anand: The Knowledge Polity: Teaching and Research in the Social Sciences.
I’ve had the pleasure to work with an excellent group of scholars across my career so far. Maybe you’d like to check out what they’re up to. Amanda Friesen □ Andrew Lewis □ Jake Neiheisel □ Ryan Burge □ Brian Calfano □ Anand Sokhey □ Amy Erica Smith □ Ryan Claassen □ Angelia Wilson □ Scott McClurg □ Kim Conger □ Robert P. Jones □ Laura Olson □ Chris Gilbert □ Dave Peterson □ Jeremy Castle □ Steven Kettell □ Michael Leo Owens □ Timothy R. Johnson □ Caroline Nordlund □ Nicholas Higgins □ Jason Adkins □ Claire Gilliland □ Shayla Olson □ Christopher Garneau □ Ted G. Jelen
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