Heather Swadley

Heather Swadley

Ph.D. in American Politics


Dr. Heather Swadley holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania.  Her research interests include American Political Development, public law, citizenship, democratic theory, and disability. 

Heather’s dissertation entitled The Politics of Naïve Integration: Community Integration for Disabled People and the Promises of Olmstead traces the development of community integration policies for people with disabilities in the areas of education, housing, and employment. Arguing that community integration is a prerequisite for free and equal citizenship, she suggests that critics of integration measures often critique a “naïve” form of integration, or integration carried out without appropriate supportive measures. By interrogating the perceived failures of integration, as well as innovative litigation and policy strategies employed by disability advocacy groups, she sets out a third option—substantive integration—for disabled people. Heather’s dissertation speaks to a growing literature on citizenship in American Political Development, Public Law, and Political Theory.

Heather also holds a J.D. from Temple Beasley School of Law and currently practices law in the District of Columbia. She also holds M.Sc. degrees from the London School of Economics & Political Science and SOAS, University of London. Her work has appeared in Res Philosophica, Temple Law Review, and the Mitchell Hamline Law Journal of Public Policy & Practice. She has also done policy work for the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, the Women’s Law Project, the Social Security Administration, the UK House of Commons, and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Fund.