Two Opportunities for Summer Study Abroad

Via the polcan listserv (Canadian Political Science Association) comes word about two opportunities for study abroad in the area of (ethnic) conflict. The first is a course offered in Kenya by the University of Toronto. The course, PCS361Y–Special Topics in Peace and Conflict Studies: Conflict in Africa: Causes, Consequences, and Responses–is described as “an intensive inquiry into the causes, consequences, and especially possible to conflict in Africa.” The course will be taught in Nairobi, Masai Mara, and Mombasa from May 13 through June 6. For more information, go here.

The second course will be taught as part of the American University in Kosovo summer program. Here is a description of the program:

American University in Kosovo is now accepting applications for the Summer of 2011 to study Peacebuilding, Post-conflict Transformation, and Development in the fun and safe ‘living laboratory’ of the Balkans. This four-week program offers a wide selection of courses in related areas from an impressive array of global scholars, diplomats, retired military officers, ex-combatants, practitioners, and representatives of international organizations. The goal of the program is to bridge the gap between theory and practice. Last year’s program included about 60 students from over 30 countries — including 6 Canadians. About 2/3 of the students were undergraduates — the remaining graduate students. Undergraduate course credits are transferrable. Several participants from 2010 referred to their experiences in the program as ‘life transforming.’

For more about this program, go here.

Blog your way to a $2000 Scholarship

Here is an opportunity that some of you may want to take a look at.  The site College is giving out a series of $2000 scholarships to college students who blog about politics.  Here is some of the information; click here to find out more about the competition and about the organization.

The 2nd Annual Political Blogging Scholarship

Scholarship Amount – $2,000

Laptop.Do you maintain a political weblog and attend college? Would you like $2,000 to help pay for books, tuition, or other living costs? If so, read on.

We’re giving away $2,000 this year to a college student who blogs about politics. Our scholarship is awarded annually.

Scholarship Requirements:

  • Your blog must contain unique and interesting information about political issues, current events, opinions, etc. No spam bloggers please!!!
  • U.S. citizen;
  • 3.0 GPA;
  • Currently attending full-time in post-secondary education; and
  • If you win, you must be willing to allow us to list your name and blog on this page. We want to be able to say we knew you before you became a well educated, rich, and famous blogging legend.

Why a Political Blogging Scholarship?

When we first introduced our general Blogging Scholarship in 2006, we didn’t really know what to expect. The applicants had such varied interests and style. There were 10 finalists, all outstanding at what they did. In the end, the winner of the popular vote was a political blogger.

We then realized it’s very hard for others to compete with political bloggers when it comes to rallying votes. Instead of banning political bloggers from entering this year’s Blogging Scholarship without any compensation, we decided to create a separate scholarship just for political bloggers.

With the 2008 presidential election run already well underway, bloggers figure to play a big roll in the next elections.

Political Blog Categories

When submitting your application, please label your affiliation as one of the following:

  • Republican Party
  • Democratic Party
  • Other 3rd Party

We are accepting scholarship applications from all political bloggers, and our directors will decide on a blog from each category to become a finalist. If we do not receive an application from one of the political categories, we will leave out that particular category during the final round. In true democratic fashion, voting will be open to the public to decide the winner between the finalists.

Call for Papers for Human Rights, Individualism, and Globalization

Bethany College in West Virginia is hosting a conference this April on the general theme of human rights, individualism, and globalization.  There will also be a panel dedicated to  an undergraduate research paper competition, and an award will be given to the best undergraduate research paper.  There are two conflicting deadlines, but the earlier one is February 21st, by which date you must send a 150-word abstract of your proposed paper topic, which would then have to be completed (assuming your proposal is accepted) by April 10th.

According to the conference website, some suggested topics are:

Cultural Narcissism; The Lonely Planet—Literature; Film and Art; Alienable Vs Inalienable Human Rights; Documenting Human Rights Abuse; Film; Art; Literature; Imagining a Human(e) Community; Common sense and Common Selves; Self Reflection and the Reflected Self; Global Orders Private Lives; The Law and Practice of Human Rights; Abolition of Slave Trade; Refugees and Forced Migration; Nationalism and Ethnicity; Diplomacy and Human Rights; Human Rights and Religious Expression ;Trafficking in Persons and Drugs; Human Rights and Globalization; Democracy; Political Rights and Human Rights; Democracy and Political Activism; NGOS and Human Rights; Rights of Women; Rights of Children; Human Rights and Diversity in the Workplace; Preventing Harassment and Discrimination in the Workplace; Human Rights and Labor Exploitation; Human Rights and the Environment; War Crimes and Terror; Transnational Politics and Globalization; Gandhi’s view on Globalization; Poverty and Globalization; Globalization as a Sophisticated Form of Colonization; Outsourcing; Capitalism and Worker’s Union; Anti-terrorist Measures and International Human Rights; Gangs; Violent Crime and Security; Racism and the Multicultural Self; Social Responsibility and Labor Rights; Objectivist Framework of Individualism; Privacy Rights and Communications Technology; Genetic Engineering and Human Rights.

I encourage you to send a proposal and you could use your blogs as the basis for a research paper to present at this conference.  There is more information at the conference website.

Summer Research and Funding Opportunity for Undergraduates

Here is a wonderful opportunity to do some faculty-monitored research this summer and get paid for it. Those of you who took my PLSC240 course may certainly be interested, but I would also encourage PLSC250 students to apply.

Here are the details:

16 January 2008

Dear Colleague,

I am writing to let you know of an opportunity for your students that I hope you will bring to their attention. Pending funding approval from the National Science Foundation, this summer (2008), the Department of Political Science at Oklahoma State University will host the fourth annual Democracy and World Politics Summer Research Program for undergraduates. This program presents a valuable opportunity for undergraduate students to conduct faculty -mentored research projects.

Supported by summer stipends, research funds, and travel funds, students will work in one of three issue areas:

  • Foreign Policy in a Democracy
  • Democratization and Democracy Promotion
  • Democracy and Conflict

The program is designed to provide undergraduate students with valuable educational experiences through its support of research participation. Oklahoma State University’s summer program has been supported by major funding from the National Science Foundation’s Research Experience for Undergraduates program, along with additional funding from the Department of Political Science and the College of Arts and Sciences at Oklahoma State University.

Successful applicants will spend about 9 weeks at Oklahoma State (June/July) during the summer of 2008, where they will work with a team of faculty members and visiting scholars to develop research questions and design and complete projects within the issue-areas just noted. Supporting activities will include research methods seminars, intensive project development workshops, guest presentations by visiting scholars, and community-forming events. Student participation will culminate in a presentation of papers at the National
Conference for Undergraduate Research (if accepted). Additionally, each year visiting scholars with substantive specialization in the programs issue areas will participate, lending their insights and expertise to the program and to student projects. . Last year, Dr. Paul Diehl (University of Illinois), Dr. Sara Mitchell (University of Iowa), Dr. Kelly Kadera (University of Iowa), Dr. Patrick James (University of Southern California), and Dr. Ralph Carter (Texas Christian University) participated. I hope to enlist these and possibly others this year.

The students who participate in the program receive the following support:

  • A stipend of $4,000.
  • Room and board at Oklahoma State University for the duration of the program.
  • Up to $500 in travel costs to and from Oklahoma StateUniversity for non-OSU students.
  • Up to $200 in research support funds (by application) for project support.
  • Funds for registration, travel, and lodging for participation in a conference in the subsequent spring (up to $900 per student).

I am writing to ask your help in recruiting good candidates for this program. Please share this information with students you believe would be good candidates for this valuable experience and encourage them to apply. All application material is located on the Oklahoma State University Department of Political Science website at The application deadline is March 15, 2008.

You or your students may contact me for additional information about the program for applications.

Thanks. I hope to see some applications from your students!


Dr. James M. Scott
Department of Political Science
Oklahoma State University
Stillwater, OK 74078
Office: 405-744-5569
Fax: 405-744-6534