Michael Neblo

Michael Neblo

Michael Neblo

Associate Professor, Political Science Department


614 292-7839

2114 Derby Hall
154 N Oval Mall
Columbus, OH

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Areas of Expertise

  • Political Psychology / Political Sociology
  • Political Theory


  • PhD, University of Chicago
  • BA (Philosophy and Mathematical Methods in the Social Sciences), Northwestern University


Professor Neblo’s research focuses on democratic theory, political psychology, political sociology, and how these fields relate to each other.  His book manuscript, Common Voices: Between the Theory & Practice of Deliberative Democracy, cuts across the deadlock between supporters of deliberative theory and their empirical critics by focusing on the core goals of the larger deliberative political system.  His work has appeared or is forthcoming in a wide range of academic journals, including The American Political Science Review, The Journal of Political Philosophy, Political Analysis, Public Opinion Quarterly, Political Behavior, Political Research Quarterly, Perspectives on Politics, Political Communication, Acta Politica, The Journal of Medicine & Law, Social Science & Medicine, as well as in edited volumes.

He holds a PhD in political science from the University of Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Mathematical Methods in the Social Sciences (MMSS) from Northwestern University.  He teaches courses in deliberative democratic and general political theory from the introductory level up to graduate seminars, as well as graduate seminars on “Social Theory for Social Scientists” and the philosophy of Jürgen Habermas.  He has tertiary interests in “applied” philosophy of social science, politics and the emotions, race politics, health politics, immigration, politics and technology, and politics and the arts.  With various colleagues, Neblo has been the recipient of awards and fellowships from the Mellon Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Veterans Administration, the International Society for Political Psychology, the Ash Institute, and a large grant from the National Science Foundation to design and study electronic town-hall meetings with the cooperation of members of the U.S. Congress.

Selected Publications

"The Multiple Institutional Logics of Innovation." (forthcoming) International Public Management Journal (with David Lazer, Ines Mergel, Curt Ziniel, and Kevin Esterling)

"Website Interactivity & 'Distributional Path Dependence' in the U.S. Congress.” (forthcoming)Political Communication (with Kevin Esterling and David Lazer)

"The Internet and the Madisonian Cycle: Possibilities and Prospects for Consultative Representation.” (forthcoming) In Building Democracy Through Online Citizen Consultation. MIT Press. Edited by Peter Shane. (with Kevin Esterling and David Lazer)

“Means, Motive, and Opportunity in Becoming Informed About Politics: A Deliberative Field Experiment.” (2011) Public Opinion Quarterly. (with Kevin Esterling & David Lazer) [Web Appendix]

“Estimating Treatment Effects in the Presence of Selection on Unobservables.” (2011) Political Analysis. (with Kevin Esterling & David Lazer)

"Who Wants To Deliberate — And Why?" (2010) American Political Science Review. (with Kevin Esterling, Ryan Kennedy, David Lazer, and Anand Sokhey) [Web Appendix][Replication Materials] 
(Winner of the 2011 Heinz Eulau Award for the best article published in the American Political Science Review.)

"Disentangling Diversity in Deliberative Democracy: Competing Theories, Their Blind Spots and Complementarities." (2010) The Journal of Political Philosophy. (with Andre Bächtiger, Simon Niemeyer, Jürg Steiner, and Marco Steenbergen)

"The Coevolution of Networks and Political Attitudes." (2010) Political Communication. (with David Lazer, Brian Rubineau, Carol Chetkovich, and Nancy Katz)

“Three-Fifths a Racist: Context and Meaning in the Race Politics Debate.”  (2009) Political Behavior. (2002 Winner of the Roberta Sigel Best Paper Award, International Society for Political Psychology) [Web Appendix]

“Meaning & Measurement: Reorienting the Race Politics Debate.” (2009) Political Research Quarterly. [Web Appendix]

“Veterans’ Views on Balancing Privacy & Research in Medicine: A Deliberative Democratic Study.” With Joy Pritts, Laura Damschroder, & Rodney Hayward.  Journal of Medicine & Law(January, 2008).

“Family Disputes: Diversity in Defining and Measuring Deliberation.” Swiss Political Science Review 13(4): 527-57, Dec. 2007.

“Philosophical Psychology with Political Intent.” in The Affect Effect: Dynamics of Emotion in Political Thinking and Behavior, (eds.) W. Russell Neuman, George E. Marcus, Ann N. Crigler, Michael MacKuen. (2007) University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

“Patients, Privacy, & Trust.” Social Science & Medicine. January 2007.  (with Joy Pritts, Laura Damschroder, John Creswell, Rosemarie Kalarickel & Rodney Hayward.)

"Measuring and Explaining the Quality of Web Sites in the (Virtual) House of Representatives.” in Current Issues and Trends in E-Government Research. Donald F. Norris (ed.). The Idea Group. (2007; with Kevin
Esterling & David Lazer)

“Thinking Through Democracy: Between the Theory & Practice of Deliberative Politics.” Acta Politica, 40:2, July, 2005

"Home (Page) Style." International Journal of E-government Research, 1(2), 48-62, April-June 2005. (with Kevin Esterling & David Lazer)

"Giving Hands & Feet to Morality." Perspectives on Politics, March 2004, Vol. 2, Number 1.

“The Emergence of Post-Culturalism.” Human Development, 1998; v.41.(with Larry Nucci).

Selected Working Papers

Common Voices: The Problems & Promise of a Deliberative Democracy Book manuscript. (Contact Author)

"Expanding the Conversation: Ripple Effects from a Deliberative Field Experiment." (with David Lazer, Kevin Esterling, and Anand Sokhey) (Under Review)

"Illegality, National Origin Cues, and Public Opinion on Immigration." (with Karthick Ramakrishnan, Kevin Esterling, and David Lazer) (Under Review)

"Explaining the Diffusion of Web-Based Communication Technology among Congressional Offices." (with Kevin Esterling and David Lazer) (Under Review)

"What is Good Quality Public Deliberation?" (with S. Goold, S. Kim, R. DeVries, G. Rowe, and P. Mulhlberger) (Under Review)

"The Weight of Passion: A Revisionist History of Political Emotion." (Under Review)

“Change for the Better?: Linking the Mechanisms of Deliberative Opinion Change to Normative Theory.”  (Under Review)

"Impassioned Democracy: The Role of Emotion in Deliberative Theory." The Democracy Collaborative Affiliates Conference: Washington, D.C.

"Narrative Democracy: Myths of Founding and Re-founding in Magical Realist Novels." APSA Annual Meeting, 2005: Washington, D.C.

“Motive Matters: Liberalism & Insincerity.” Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting, 2003:  Chicago, IL.  Last draft: April, 2005.

"A Theory of Deliberation as Interactive Reasoning." (with William Minozzi and David Siegel)

"Barbarians at the Gate & Neighbors Next Door: Policy Knowledge, Anxiety, & Public Opinion about Immigration in the U.S." (with Robert Gulotty)

OpEds & Book Reviews

"Town Halls without the Screaming or Scripting." The Boston Globe, August 30th, 2009.

Review of Thomas Schelling’s Strategies of Commitment and Other EssaysEthics Oct. 2007 (with Benjamin Jones).

Review of Joseph Heath’s Communicative Action and Rational ChoiceEthics, October, 2003.

Review of Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky (eds.) Choices, Values, and FramesJournal of Policy Analysis and Management, Summer, 2003.

Review of Dennis Chong’s Rational Lives: Norms and Values in Politics and SocietyEthics, April, 2002.