Post-doctorate Fellowship

Position filled- Check back in Fall 2017 for another opening!

I am thrilled to announce that Brendon Westler has accepted our offer to join the Center for the Study of Liberal Democracy at the University of Madison, WI as a postdoctoral fellow. Brendon will start in his new position this coming academic year in the Fall of 2016.

Brendon is coming to us from the Journal Perspectives on Politics, where he is currently the Editorial Assistant. He has a rich background in modern and contemporary political theory, democratic theory, and the history of political thought, with a strong interest in comparative political thought.  

Please join me in welcoming Brendon to his new position.

The Center for the Study of Liberal Democracy (CSLD) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison invites applications for a postdoctoral fellowship in political theory for 2016-17. Housed in the Department of Political Science, the CSLD promotes the study and critical appreciation of the cardinal principles and institutions of liberal democracy, including, but not limited to, constitutionalism and rule of law; the meaning and scope of freedom and free markets in a democratic order; the place and role of religion in liberal democracies; the relationship between liberty and equality. Candidates whose teaching and research explore principles of classical liberalism, especially issues pertaining to the First Amendment will be given special consideration.

Eligible applicants must have completed all requirements for a Ph.D. by August 15, 2016, but no earlier than August 15, 2013. The fellow will receive a stipend of $48,000 per year as well as research funds, benefits, and a relocation allowance. The fellow will teach one course per semester in either the Department of Political Science or the Integrated Liberal Studies program as well as assist with the CSLD’s programming, and will take an active part in the workshops, conferences, and intellectual life of the political theory field. The appointment will begin in August 2016 with an opportunity for renewal for the 2017-2018 academic year.

More information about the CSLD is available via Applicants may apply online at: Complete applications will include a cover letter outlining a research agenda for the next two years, CV, one writing sample (10,000 word maximum), two sample syllabi, teaching evaluations (if available), and three letters of recommendation. To ensure full consideration, all application materials should be received by June 27, 2014. The University of Wisconsin is an EOE/AA Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply. CBC must be completed prior to hiring.

2016 Undergraduate Essay Competition

2016 Winners: Joshua Gutzmann, Rebekah Cullum, & Zawadi Carroll 

Contest currently closed- Check back in Spring 2017!

The Wisconsin Center for the Study of Liberal Democracy invites all University of Wisconsin-Madison undergraduate students to participate in their 2016 essay competition. This year’s essay question celebrates the Center’s retiring co-founder Donald Downs’ contributions to the study of academic freedom and the First Amendment. Contestants are asked to write a 1,000 word essay responding to the following question:

 “Are the goals of fostering freedom of speech on campus and of fostering a welcoming environment for all students incompatible?"

The first prize winner will receive an award of $1,000, the second prize winner will receive $500, and the third prize winner will receive $250. Essays will be accepted until Friday, March 11, 2016. The Center will announce the prize winners by the end of March, 2016. All submissions should be emailed to Dr. Jonathan Peter Schwartz at