Good Reasons to Run

Call for contributions: a Conference, a “Dialogues” section in Politics, Groups, and Identities, and a subsequent edited volume--Good Reasons to Run: Illuminating the Path to Political Office for All

We are excited to share with you some of our ideas about recruiting women to run for office and hope that you will join us in this process. We are planning a “Dialogues” section for the Politics, Groups and Identities Journal, and an edited volume. The material for the PGI “Dialogues” and edited volume pieces will be presented and workshopped at a conference this fall at the University of Pennsylvania, organized by Rachel Bernhard, Shauna Shames, Mirya Holman, and Dawn Teele. Travel funding for the conference will be available on an as-needed basis.  

Research on political ambition, particularly that of women, has made great strides in recent years, but there is still much we do not know about what makes a difference in getting potential candidates to run.  This kind of analysis – particularly a better understanding of when recruitment and training work, and when they fail – is the focus of the Dialogues piece, the conference, and the edited volume.


The Politics, Groups and Identities Journal has a special section – the Dialogues – which might provide an avenue for several authors to write shorter pieces “tackling a common question or debate.” These pieces are peer reviewed, but tend to be shorter and do not follow the traditional research article format. If you are interested in potentially contributing a piece to the Dialogues, please send an abstract of 150-200 words, a short bio (including any relevant published works), and contact information (including rank and institution) to Rachel Bernhard by June 2, 2017. If your piece is selected, your 4000-5000 word essay will be due to the editorial team by October 15, 2017. The editorial team will give you feedback, which will need to be incorporated into your submission to PGI, which will undergo peer review. Final versions are due to PGI for peer review by December 1, 2017.


To be held at the University of Pennsylvania on November 11-12, 2017, this conference will include academics, practitioners, and activists, with a focus on advancing research on how to convince a more diverse group of candidates to run for political office. Comparative perspectives are welcome. If you submit either a dialogues piece or a chapter to the book, we *highly encourage* you to come to the conference to receive feedback and help others develop their ideas.  

Edited Volume

The edited book will grow directly out of the above-described conference this fall. Ideally, the book will contain approachable writing for a more general audience that showcases the “Good Reasons to Run.” The academic pieces will be based on original research and will be presented alongside related vignettes from practitioners, candidates, and activists.  Work featured in the volume will be presented and workshopped at the fall Penn conference and will be reviewed during the book publishing process. Feel free to propose papers that fall into any of the sections in the below outline – or on related topics. If you are interested in contributing to the volume, please send an abstract of 250-350 words (indicating which section your chapter would fit into – see attached outline), bio (including any relevant work), and contact information (including institution) to Rachel Bernhard by July 10, 2017. Full drafts of the chapters are due by Nov 3, with a late spring publication deadline.