The Government Department Honors Program provides qualified undergraduates with an opportunity to complete independent research under the supervision of members of the Department.

Applying to the Honors Program

Participants define and analyze a specific issue or hypothesis in the field of political science and write a thesis. The Program is completed within the framework of a three-course sequence during the senior year: Government 97 (fall), and Government 98 (winter) and Government 99 (spring). Government 97 will count as a seminar level course and 98 as a midlevel. Government 99 is required to complete the program but will not count toward the Government major or minor. Students meet weekly with the Directors of the Honors Program at the 3B hour during the fall term. Students also meet regularly with individual thesis advisors at times convenient to both.

If you are considering applying to next year’s Honors Program, this is the ideal time to start thinking ahead about a thesis topic and advisor. It’s also important to remember that a seminar must be completed before enrolling in the Honors Program. If you have an interest in pursuing the Honors Program, please review the informational materials and the application above. For additional information on writing an Honors thesis, feel free to talk with the co-directors of the Honors Program, Michelle Clarke and Benjamin Valentino, or any of the Government faculty.


Honors Students and Their Advisors

Program Directors


Jose Burnes Garza

  • “Beyond Compliance: The Impact of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in Mexico”
  • Advisor: Benjamin Valentino

Angela Cai

  • “Can China Innovate? Innovation, FDI, and Integration in the Global Supply Chain”
  • Advisor: Jennifer Lind

Victoria Chi

  • Selling Global Health: Understanding American Public Opinion on Global Health Aid”
  • Advisor: Benjamin Valentino

Nate Greason

  • “Checking in on Fact Checking: Assessing the Effect of Fact Checking on Presidential Candidates’ TV Advertising”
  • Advisor: Brendan Nyhan

Jacob Greenberg

  • “Flat Roads and Western Unions: Factors Explaining the Duration and Number of Refugees in the Top 2% of Refugee Crises from 1975 to 2013”
  • Advisor: Benjamin Valentino

Jeeihn Lee

  • “The Will of ‘We the People?’ Transformative Constitutions and Their Claim to Legitimacy”
  • Advisor: Sonu Bedi

Samuel Libby

  • “Fiscal inequality: Examining the Relationship between State Income Inequality, Federal Fiscal Policy, and Congressional Partisanship”
  • Advisor: Dean Lacy

Alexandra Minsk

  • “Deliberative Democracy: Between Reasons and the Common Good”
  • Advisor: Michelle Clarke

Megan Ong

  • “Understanding Variation in Terrorist Attack Rates During Interstate War”
  • Advisor: Jeffery Friedman

Clara Wang

  • “Media and Information Control in the People’s Republic of China”
  • Advisors: Yusaku Horiuchi & Sean Westwood

Alexandra Woodruff

  • “Unpacking the Multidimensional Concept of Democracy: A conjoint Experiment on Public Willingness to Support War”
  • Advisor: Yusaku Horiuchi

Asaf Zilberfarb

  • “A Tribal Peace: An Examination of the Ethno-Religious Identities in Israeli Society and their Impact of Support for the Two-State Solution”
  • Advisor: Benjamin Valentino