About Our Department

The Department of Political Science at Washington University in St. Louis is an international leader in political science, recognized for our strengths in theory, methods, and the growing field of international relations. Our faculty are leading scholars in their subfields, and our PhD students go on to be leaders in the discipline. Our ambitious undergraduate student body at WashU are among the brightest in the country, and our majors have their choice of careers, graduate programs, and professional schools. The department is nationally and internationally recognized for its research productivity. As of 2023, our graduate program is ranked #12 nationally by the US News and World Report.

Research & Teaching

Our faculty specialize in a variety of research areas within political science, including American politics, formal theory, international conflict, international political economy, methodology, and political theory. Across all these areas, faculty regularly bring their expertise to both undergraduate and graduate students in the classroom. We host several subfield-specific workshops where students and faculty collaborate on research in real time. Students regularly co-author publications with our faculty, and often continue those collaborations well after graduation.


The department regularly hosts lectures, workshops, and conferences to foster our intellectual community. Our annual spring Speaker Series invites decorated scholars across the discipline to present research, as well as our year-long Workshop on Politics, Ethics and Society. In recent years, our department has hosted annual conferences for Visions in Methodology, the Society for Political Methodology, and the Peace Science Society, as well as our annual self-hosted Comparative Politics Annual Conference

Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

The Department of Political Science at Washington University is deeply committed to creating a diverse and inclusive learning environment, and to generating new scientific knowledge on diversity and equity in society. We believe that a diverse and inclusive academic community is essential to producing excellent scholarship and promoting student learning. We believe that all members of our community should feel welcome and respected, regardless of their background or identity, and we strive to ensure that all members of our community have the opportunity to succeed. We recognize that there have been systemic barriers that have prevented people from marginalized groups from participating fully in academia. We are working to dismantle these barriers and to create a more equitable environment for all. We are committed to creating a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive Department of Political Science- this is essential to our mission of producing excellent scholarship and preparing students to be informed and engaged citizens in a globalized world.

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Graduate Placement Success

We pride ourselves on our job placement on the academic job market, among the top in the discipline. We place about 90 percent of our students with the majority in tenure-track positions.

Graduate Placement Information
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