Jenna L. Bednar

Research Professor, CPS
Professor, LSA Political Science
Jenna L. Bednar

BIO

Dr. Bednar's research combines positive political theory and systems theory to study how formal institutions remain effective in complex environments, such as laws, electoral rules or constitutions. Her work examines how institutional interactions can improve functionality and enable systemic response to perturbations. She also explores how the interplay between culture and institutions contributes to social achievements. Dr. Bednar's research includes a book, The Robust Federation, and several papers that address the robustness of federal systems, as well as theoretical and experimental work on cultural evolution and institutional performance. She has also driven her ideas into more applied realms, such as campaign contributions, transboundary water systems and environmental sustainability, through essays, an empirical paper and public policy-related projects. Dr. Bednar currently holds the position of Edie N. Goldenberg Endowed Director of the Michigan in Washington Program, for 2017-2022.