At Penn, the world class faculty, research centers, and libraries make the school a top choice for nascent political scientists.


The size of the Political Science graduate program enables students to enjoy close working relationships and individualized study arrangements with faculty members. At present, the permanent faculty includes 32 members, with further expansion planned. In addition, the Department frequently welcomes visiting professors in fields of interest to graduate students.

Faculty publications have won such awards as the top prizes for books and papers bestowed by the American Political Science Association. They have served as editors or board members of journals as diverse as The American Political Science Review, International Organization, World Politics, PS: Politics & Political Science, Orbis, Praxis, Asian Survey, Theory & Event, Politics and Gender and The Journal of Theoretical Politics. Their fellowships include Fulbrights, Guggenheims, and grants from the National Science Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, the Carnegie Mellon Corporation, the Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Russell Sage Foundation, The National Endowment for the Humanities, The American Council of Learned Societies, The Institute for Advanced Study, and the Smith Richardson Foundation. They include among their ranks advisers to numerous local, state, national, and international agencies.

Research Centers

Nearly a dozen research centers and programs are associated with the Political Science Dept. The full list can be viewed here. They host speaker series, conferences, research seminars, and workshops, bringing both breadth and depth to the graduate student experience.

Libraries & Other Resources

Van Pelt Library is the center of a system that contains approximately 3.5 million volumes while being fully integrated with state-of-the-art electronic resources. Graduate students and faculty in the Political Science Department also have access to a reference librarian specifically assigned to assist them with their research needs.

The Van Pelt Library is a depository of all documents published by the United Nations and of microform copies of all documents published by the Organization of American States. The Biddle Law Library contains extensive materials relating to American constitutional law, international law, and international organizations. The Lippincott Library contains a wide range of publications concerning government-business relations, multinational corporations, and the international political economy. Of interest to area specialists are the fine library collections of materials on South Asia, Japan, China, and the Middle East. Students interested in American political development can draw on the manuscripts, records, and reference books of several institutions in Philadelphia, such as the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, the Library Company of Philadelphia, the Free Library of Philadelphia, the Mercantile Library, and the American Philosophical Society.

The Social Science Data Center is an important resource for data used in the quantitative analysis of political phenomenon and provides a wide scope of technical, consulting, and computer services for faculty and students. Several statistical packages are installed and maintained, and informal mini-courses are provided to instruct classes and individuals in their use.