Matthew David Nelsen

Asst. Professor

(651) 895-2050
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Matt Nelsen is an assistant professor within the Department of Political Science at the University of Miami. His research examines how local-level institutions, especially schools and neighborhoods, act as microcosms of democracy. He finds that these institutions can simultaneously serve as sites that exacerbate existing racial inequalities while also holding the potential to foster agency and equal political voice. He investigates these roles and their effects on political participation by leveraging multiple methodological approaches, including lab-in-the-field experiments, survey data, in-depth interviews, focus groups, and archival research. Matt's research is featured in a number of publications, including Perspectives on Politics,  Political Behavior, the Journal of Race, Ethnicity, and Politics, the Washington Post, and Gen Forward's Race and Place: Young Adults and the Future of Chicago. 

Matt received his PhD in Political Science from Northwestern University in June of 2020 and previously obtained a MA in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago and BAs in Political Science and Asian Studies from St. Olaf College.