Welcome to the world of Politics & International Affairs!
Our department’s focus is both domestic and international, with particular strengths in environmental politics and sustainability, political economy of development, and politics of diversity.
We offer undergraduate and graduate courses in:
- American politics
- international relations and comparative politics
- public policy
- public administration
Additionally, our department is led by dynamic faculty engaged in cutting-edge research and dedicated to teaching in a small classroom.
Stay up to date with Politics & International Affairs
Tribute to Geeta Chowdhry, PhD planned
Geeta Chowdhry, Ph.D.
Teacher, Mentor, Friend
1956 - 2014
Learn more about the life and legacy of Geeta Chowdhry, Ph.D. A celebration of Geeta Chowdhry's life will be held at 3:00pm Tuesday, March 11th, in the Cline Library Auditorium at Northern Arizona University. A reception will follow in Grand Canyon Ballroom of the University Union. Condolences and memories may be shared on this Facebook page.
Join Model United Nations!
Learn more about this growing organization:
Watch Video: Model United Nations at Northern Arizona University
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Congratulations Jessica Deshazo, PhD!
Jessica Deshazo, PhD successfully defended her dissertation during the spring 2014 semester. The dissertation defense is the final stage in completing graduate work in the PhD program. The dissertation, entitled "Analyzing the Administration of REDD, FSC, PEFC in Terms of Efficiency, Equity, and Transparency," met the approval of the Graduate College, and Jessica's committee chair, Professor Zach Smith.
Jessica is currently an assistant professor of Political Science at California State University, Los Angeles.
Congratulations, Dr. Deshazo!
Pizza with Professionals event offers students first hand insight
Tim Ernster, the City manager of Sedona joined NAU students to discuss job experiences related to city government. The talk, sponsored by the Department of Politics & International Affairs, is a part of an on-going presentation series: Pizza with Professionals. The next event is scheduled for Wednesday, March 5th at noon in SBS 337. Shari Miller, JD., Compliance Manager for State Authorization at NAU will lead students in understanding job opportunities. Join us for free pizza and conversation with professionals!
Environmental Professionals of Arizona awards scholarship to undergraduate Giffin
Candice Giffin, a double major in the Department of Politics & International Affairs, was awarded the Environmental Professionals of Arizona (EPAZ) scholarship on Tuesday, February 11th, 2014, at the organization's annual conference in Phoenix. The award
recognized Candice's commitment to sustainability and campus stewardship
while at NAU.
ASNAU "State of the Student" address honors PIA undergraduate seniors
Five students representing the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences and the Department of Politics & International Affairs were mentioned in the "State of the Student" address on Wednesday, January 29th. Skyler Clary, John Kelly, Caitlin Rynn, Sara Tackett, and Kierstin Turnock each make significant contributions to SBS and the NAU community. Congratulations!
Model United Nations undergraduates demonstrate excellence, bring home awards from MUN conferences
Three undergraduates representing NAU, Rebecca Andryushchenko, Shilo Rynn, and Nick Schlegel, brought home awards from the National Model UN conference. The conference took place in Washington D.C. during the last weekend in October 2013. Of 100 universities represented at the conference, these students earned an honorable mention, placing in the top tier of delegations for the entire conference! NAU stood out as a global competitor and established themselves as a force to be reckoned with at this year's national conference. Additionally, the MUN team returned from the University of California at Santa Barbara MUN conference with excellent news. The NAU team, which includes 27 undergraduate students, received the high honor of Distinguished Delegation. The NAU team placed higher than teams from Stanford, USC, UCLA, ASU and UofA. In addition, the following students received individual awards.
- John Kelly, Outstanding Delegate
- Greg Goekler, Outstanding Delegate
- Greg Wilson, Distinguished Delegate
- Claire Bergstresser, Distinguished Delegate (first time conference attendee)
In November, at the American Model United Nations conference in Chicago, the NAU delegation won the "Exceptional Representation Award." Special recognition goes to the following undergraduates: Lauren Sharrock, John Kelly, Caitlin Rynn, Greg Wilson, and Greg Goekler. Way to go! Read more on NAU News: In the Spotlight.
The Model United Nations Club at NAU demonstrated excellent, professionalism, and ranks as a global competitor at MUN events this year! Special thanks and congratulations to John Kelly, the current president of the MUN club, for his commitment, hard work, and leadership. Nationally, NAU is ranked in the top 75 for North American teams! What an accomplishment!
Faculty news & updates
Lori Poloni-Staudinger, associate professor in the Department of Politics & International Affairs, along with Candice Ortbals of Pepperdine
University, coauthored “Gendering Abbottabad: Agency and Hegemonic
Masculinity in an Age of Global Terrorism,” in the January 2014 issue
of Gender Issues journal.
Poloni-Staudinger also recently signed a learning agreement grant with
the Kettering Foundation. As part of the agreement, she will collaborate
with the foundation to research democratic capacity-building associated
with statewide issue forums. Poloni-Staudinger has been serving for the
last year as statewide coordinator of Arizona Deliberates, a
collaborative effort between Poloni-Staudinger at NAU and partners at
Maricopa Community College District and Our Family Services, a
non-profit in Pima County. The learning agreement will investigate how
coordination of statewide forums can increase democratic capacity at
both a state and local level, thereby ameliorating a democracy void in
- NAU Experience named Gretchen Gee, John Hultgren, Stephen Nuno, Mark Montoya and Naomi Pinion, PhDs, for outstanding teaching, reported by NAU sophomores.
- Professor Jacqueline Vaughn, PhD just released a new book, Philanthropy and the National Park Service with Palgrave Macmillan Publishers.. The book, co-authored with Dr. Hanna Cortner, formerly of NAU, explores the relationship between private philanthropy and non-profit organizations, called friends groups and cooperating associations, that support specific national park units. The research for the book, which outlines financial and volunteer support for the nation's 401 national parks, was conducted during Dr. Vaughn's sabbatical.
- Professor Paul Lenze, PhD will serve as a reviewer of applications for the prestigious Boren Award program and will serve as an expert in the areas of Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia
- Professor Jacqueline Vaughn, PhD will be presenting a paper, "Frosting or Cake? Philanthropy, Nonprofit Partnerships and the National Park Service" at the annual meeting of the Southern Political Science Association in New Orleans in January. She will also be serving as a chair of a panel on Executive Powers and Executive Privilege, and as discussant on a panel on Environmental Policymaking at the Local Level.
- Professor Zach Smith, PhD is publishing two books with Routledge Press UK: Sustainability: If it is Everything it is Nothing (published with Heather Farley, PhD) and What is Water Worth? (published with Kira Russo). Professor Smith also signed a book contract with Routledge for a book tentatively titled Why REDD Will Fail (forthcoming 2014).
- Professor Zach Smith, PhD will present "Administering Public Art Programs in Arizona's Cities and Towns: Development, Operation, and Promotion" at the International Society of Management and Behavioral Sciences Conference in Montreal. A publication with the same name is currently under review for publication in the Journal of Arts Management.
- Professor Zach Smith, PhD will present "Building Civic Engagement Through Public Art" at the Southern Political Science Association Conference in New Orleans (January 2014).
- Professor Paul Lenze, PhD will present "Civil-Military Relations in the Middle East: Leadership Traits of Egyptian Military Officers" at the Southern Political Science Association Conference in New Orleans (January 2014).
- Professor Paul Lenze, PhD will present "Death Knell for Democracy?: Civil-Military Relations in 1991 Algeria and 2013 Egypt" at the Western Political Science Association Conference in Seattle (March 2014).
- Congratulations Professor Paul Lenze, PhD on forthcoming book publication Civil-Military Relations in "Islamic Democracies": Military Intervention & Withdrawal in Algeria, Egypt, Pakistan, and Turkey contracted with First Forum Press.
Politics & International Affairs street address
Department of Politics and International Affairs
Raul H. Castro Social and Behavioral Sciences
5 E. McConnell Dr.
Flagstaff, AZ. 86011