Scientific American Presents Faculty of Political Science | Nebraska today

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The work of three political scientists from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln was featured in an Oct. 26 Scientific American article on the relatively new field of political neuroscience.

The 2013 book “Predisposed” by John hibbing, professor of political science at the Regent University Foundation in Nebraska; Kevin smith, Professor Olson and Chair of Political Science in Nebraska; and John Alford, professor of political science at Rice University; was emphasized in the article. In the book, the authors argue that political differences are rooted in personality characteristics and biological predispositions. Research shows that conservatives tend to desire security, predictability and authority more than liberals, and liberals are more comfortable with novelty, nuance and complexity.

A 2017 study of Ingrid Haas, an associate professor of political science in Nebraska, was also featured in the article. Haas put 58 people of diverse political opinions through a brain scan and asked them about the policy statements of hypothetical candidates from the two major parties. She found that the Liberals were more attentive to incongruous information, especially for Democratic candidates. Haas suspects that engaging more in such information might make voters more likely to punish candidates later, but she said they might instead exercise a form of bias called “reasoned reasoning” to minimize incongruity.

In other national news:

  • Hibbing’s new book, “The Securitarian Personality,” was featured in an October 1 column by David Brooks of the New York Times. In the book, Hibbing argues that people on the right of the political spectrum tend to react to threats from outside America, while people on the left see threats from the powerful financial and political spheres within. the United States. “The Securitarian Personality,” based on news reports, focus groups and surveys, is an attempt to understand what motivates Trump’s most enthusiastic supporters.

  • Hibbing was also interviewed for an Oct. 20 Bloomberg government article about the increased attention given to state legislative races in the Midwest in preparation for Congress redistribution. With tighter legislative control in Nebraska, the Republican Party could redesign the state’s 2nd congressional district to lock in an electoral vote for a Republican president, Hibbing said.

Discover the Department of Political Science.


Nebraska Headliners spotlights Husker faculty and staff featured in major national media. If you see a possible Nebraska headliner, submit the story or Url by e-mail to [email protected]


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