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Faculty member receives prestigious political science award

Photo of Daniel Pemstein

Daniel Pemstein

Daniel Pemstein, assistant professor of political science, has been honored with a major award from the American Political Science Association.

 Pemstein and co-author Stephen Meserve of Texas Tech University, wrote the article, “Google Politics: The Political Determinants of Internet Censorship in Democracies,” which received the “Best Information Technology and Politics Article Award.” They were honored for the best paper published in 2018.

The researchers were recognized during the organization’s annual meeting Aug. 29-Sept. 1, in Washington, D.C.

 "This was a fun article to write, and Steve and I see it as a first step in a larger research project,” Pemstein said. “I'm delighted that the awards committee found the paper interesting, and worthy of recognition."

According to the article’s abstract, the expansion of digital interconnectivity has both increased individuals’ access to media and presented governments with new opportunities to regulate information flows. The researchers argue that government internet censorship occurs, in part, for political reasons. They seek to identify the conditions under which governments censor material.

Pemstein’s leading research and national reputation draw high praise from Thomas Ambrosio, head of the Department of Criminal Justice and Political Science.

“Daniel is an accomplished and well-known researcher who is the co-author of the Scythe Statistical Library, co-principal investigator of the Digital Society Project and a co-developer of the Unified Democracy Scores,” said Ambrosio, professor of political science and department head. “He also is a member of the steering committee and the top methodologist for the Varieties of Democracy, known as V-Dem, which includes some real heavy-hitters in the discipline. This is particularly impressive since the V-Dem project is probably the most important statistical work being done in the field of comparative politics in the last decade.”

Pemstein is a comparative political economist and methodologist who measures and studies political institutions. He joined the NDSU faculty in 2012. He earned his bachelor’s degree at Washington University, St. Louis, and his master’s degree and doctorate from the University of Illinois.

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