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College of Arts and Sciences Politics & Society

Public support for environmental spending hinges on White House

Infographic showing public support for environmental spending Leveraging the power of data analytics, WSU sociologist Erik Johnson teased apart the opinions of more than 20,000 people over more than four decades and found support for environmental spending consistently plummeted during the administrations of Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, Democrats all.

Johnson made his discovery using a statistical analysis that looked at poll respondents in terms of their age, the time period in which they were surveyed and » More …

Renewable energy offers common ground for Democrats, Republicans

Solor panel farm in the desertAs the battle lines are drawn for next month’s hotly contested midterm elections, some Americans may be comforted to know there is at least one area of common ground for Democrats and Republicans: regardless of political standing, age or gender, U.S. voters are in favor of renewable energy, according to research by Christine Horne, professor of sociology.

Horne and Emily Kennedy, a former WSU sociology professor now at the University of British Columbia, are the authors of a new study in the journal Environmental Politics that shows while conservatives and liberals tend to disagree » More …

WSU’s Foley Institute joins National Civility Network

Setting the Table for CivilityPolitical polarization, decreasing trust in government, and rising populist rhetoric, have made political civility a hot-button topic. WSU’s Thomas S. Foley Institute for Public Policy and Public Service has been tackling this issue head-on for quite some time.

Pursuing that goal, Cornell Clayton, director of the Foley Institute, announced that the institute has joined the National Civility Network, a program of the National Institute for Civil Discourse (NIDC). » More …

Awards empower arts prof to pursue research, creativity in India

Io Palmer in the sculpture studioMixed-media sculptor and Washington State University associate professor of fine arts Io Palmer uses her artistic skills to explore complex social issues and her teaching skills to inspire future artists.

Inaugural recipient of the Berry Family Distinguished Professorship in Liberal Arts at WSU, Palmer recently received a Fulbright-Nehru Academic and Professional Excellence Award and is preparing to deploy her diverse skills in new ways in a new environment. » More …

FBI data show positive policing changes after cannabis legalization

David MakinWSU researchers have found that marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington has not hurt police effectiveness. In fact, clearance rates for certain crimes have improved.

Clearance rates — the number of cases solved, typically by the arrest of a suspect — were falling for violent and property crimes in the two states before they authorized retail sales of marijuana late in 2012. The rates then improved significantly in Colorado and Washington while remaining » More …