CSU, Chico News

Political Scientist Selected as Fulbright Distinguished Chair at Australia National University

Date: 04-28-2009

Joe Wills
Public Affairs
Diana Dwyre
Department of Political Science

Diana Dwyre, professor of political science in the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences at California State University, Chico, has been named the 2009-2010 Fulbright Distinguished Chair in American Political Science at Australia National University (ANU) in Canberra. She will be in residence in Australia’s capital, Canberra, during spring 2010.

The ANU Distinguished Chair position is intended to increase the awareness of the study of American politics and government in Australia and promote comparative and collaborative research in political science between Australia and the United States. Dwyre will be affiliated with the ANU School of Social Sciences in the Faculty of Arts.

The Fulbright Distinguished Chair Program is viewed as among the most prestigious appointments in the Fulbright Scholars Program, which is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. State Department. More than 800 Fulbright scholars are selected every year, but only 39 are named distinguished chairs.

Dwyre, an expert in campaign finance issues, will conduct collaborative research on Australian and U.S. campaign finance regulations and practices, take part in graduate and undergraduate seminars and deliver public lectures on a nationwide speaking tour.

“While the U.S. and Australia have different political systems, our two nations share common approaches to the conduct and practice of elections and political finance, such as the importance of freedom of speech in regulating money in elections,” Dwyre said. She will work with Australian scholars to conduct a comparative study of the theoretical and practical state of political finance in the two nations.

Dwyre has co-authored two books on U.S. campaign finance—“Legislative Labyrinth: Congress and Campaign Finance Reform” (CQ Press 2001) and “Limits and Loopholes: The Quest for Money, Free Speech and Fair Elections” (CQ Press, 2008)—and she has published numerous journal articles and book chapters on campaign finance, political parties, interest groups and the U.S. Congress.

Dwyre worked on campaign finance policy in the U.S. Congress while serving as the William A. Steiger American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow in 1997-1998. She received her PhD in political science and public administration from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 1994. She has been teaching at CSU, Chico since 1997, and she served as chairperson of the Department of Political Science at CSU, Chico from 2004 to 2008.

Professor Dwyre’s scholarly and practical experiences give her a valuable perspective on an issue of great debate in both countries. “We can learn much from each other in the area of campaign finance, and I am honored and excited to have this opportunity to increase mutual understanding,” said Dwyre.