Scholars join faculty for 2020-21; new chairs announced
Five tenure-track faculty members have joined
the Maxwell School for the 2020-21 academic year. In addition, three current faculty
members have been named chairs of their academic departments.
Chairs appointed include:
History. Branson’s training is in the
social history of early America. She is the author of two books: These Fiery
Frenchified Damese: Women, Politics, and Culture in Early National Philadelphia
(University of Pennsylvania Press, 2001); and Dangerous to Know: Women,
Class and Crime in the Early Republic (University of Pennsylvania Press,
2008). She came to Syracuse University in 2005 and joined the Maxwell faculty in
Science. Gadarian researches American politics, political psychology,
political communication, and public opinion, and is co-author of Anxious Politics: Democratic Citizenship in
a Threatening World (Cambridge University Press, 2015). She joined the Maxwell
faculty in 2011, and previously served as director of undergraduate education.
Wilmoth, Sociology. Wilmoth studies the sociology of aging and the life
course, demography, and health. She will continue, also, as director of
Syracuse University’s Aging Studies Institute. She is the co-editor of four
major surveys related to gerontology and the life course. She joined the
faculty in 2002.
tenure-track faculty members include:
Ethan Coffel, Assistant
Professor, Geography. Coffel comes to Maxwell from Dartmouth College, where he was a Neukom Institute
Postdoctoral Fellow. His research focuses on how climate change will affect the
extreme weather events that, in turn, impact agriculture, energy systems, and transportation.
His work has been supported by Dartmouth’s Neukom Institute for Computational
Science and an NSF graduate research fellowship. He holds a PhD in earth and
environmental science from Columbia University (2018).
Assistant Professor, Political Science. Dwidar’s research focuses on American national
institutions and public policy, with emphases on minority representation,
organized interests, and bureaucratic politics. She has published in the Journal of Black Studies and in The Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics,
and she was supported by a 2014-2016
Minority Fellowship from the American Political Science Association and a
2014-2018 Malcolm Macdonald Recruitment Fellowship from the University of Texas
at Austin, where she earned a PhD in government (2019).
Jun Li, Assistant
Professor, Public Administration and International Affairs. Li studies the U.S.
health care system, with an emphasis on the consequences of Medicare payment
incentives — for example, how Medicare’s performance-based contracts with
hospitals and home health care providers affect their behavior. Her research
has been supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
Additionally, she has won the Rackham Pre-Doctoral Fellowship and the Walter J.
McNerney Award. She earned a PhD in health services organization and policy
from the University of Michigan (2020).
Michael John Williams,
Associate Professor, Public Administration and International Affairs. Williams comes to
Maxwell from New York University, where he was clinical professor and director
of International Relations. He researched international security, with a
concentration in 20th-century Europe, and has published on the North Atlantic
Treaty Organization and issues of war and technology. He is the author of Science, Law and Liberalism in the American
Way of War: The Quest for Humanity in Conflict (Cambridge University Press,
2014). Williams has been associated with numerous policy institutes, including
the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, the Center for European Policy
Analysis in Washington, D.C., the German Ministry of Defense, Oxford’s
Rothermere American Institute, and the Bundeswehr Center for Social Science in
Potsdam. He is a fellow at the Atlantic Council of the United States and
co-editor-in-chief of the journal International
Politics. His PhD is from the London School of Economics & Political
Yael Zeira, Associate
Professor, Political Science. Zeira was previously an assistant professor of
political science and international studies at the University of Mississippi. She
examines the causes and consequences of public opinion and political behavior
in authoritarian and conflict settings, with a regional focus on the Middle
East. She wrote The Revolution Within:
State Institutions and Unarmed Resistance in Palestine (Cambridge
University Press, 2019) and has published in journals that include Comparative Political Studies and the Journal of Conflict Resolution. Her work
has been supported by the Project on Middle East Political Science, New York
University, Stanford University, the University of Texas at Austin, and the
University of Wisconsin-Madison, among others. She earned a PhD in politics
from New York University (2012).