Why the Public Should Fund Political Science Research

May 9 '13

Our public officials are certainly free to make decisions about the best use of the public’s money. But to single out one discipline out of the many that receive federal support seems pernicious, especially when that discipline is focused on such basic questions about the quality of our government and its abilities to improve people’s lives. The answers to these questions are neither cheap nor obvious; they require support and expertise to answer.

As Congress considers its next budget resolutions, we strongly encourage its members to support restoring full funding to the NSF political science program. This represents only a very narrow sliver of the federal budget, but it makes an enormous difference to scholars, their students, and, ultimately, anyone who cares about the functioning of their government.

From a letter written by Seth Masket of the University of Denver, Robert Duffy of Colorado State, and David Brown of the University of Colorado at Boulder.