Author Meets Critic: Foundations and American Political Science: The Transformation of a Discipline, 1945-1970, by Emily Hauptmann

Emily Hauptmann, Western Michigan University

In Foundations and American Political Science: The Transformation of a Discipline, 1945-1970, Emily Hauptmann explores how funding from major philanthropic foundations changed the substance and structure of mid-twentieth century political science. The rise of statistical analyses of survey data, the decline of public administration, and heightened conflict over the best methods for understanding politics, Hauptmann argues, all grew out of universities’ responses to foundation initiatives. Published by the University Press of Kansas in November of 2022, the book includes in-depth studies of specific social science programs designed by the Carnegie, Ford and Rockefeller philanthropies as well as how these programs transformed the political science departments at the University of Michigan and the University of California, Berkeley. The participants in the proposed roundtable work in a range of fields, including comparative politics (Moustafa), the history of international relations (Vitalis), and the history and sociology of Anglo-American foreign policy elites (Parmar). Moustafa will explore the relation between mid-twentieth century foundation funding and recent trends in NSF funding for the social sciences. Parmar and Vitalis will put Hauptmann’s book into conversation with their own critical accounts of how the study of international relations and foreign policy have fared in universities in the US and UK. By engaging with various aspects of Foundations and American Political Science that resonate with their own work, this roundtable aims to illustrate the broader implications of Hauptmann’s book for the recent history of the social sciences.

No extended abstract or paper available

 Presented in Session 204. Author Meets Critics: Foundations and American Political Science, by Emily Hauptmann