Public event

A country divided: polling, polarisation and protest in modern US politics

With the approaching US elections on 3 November, many casual observers of US politics are no doubt beginning to wonder about the validity and reliability of current polling and forecasts. Which factors could still be decisive for the election in these final weeks? In what way will social unrest and protests throughout the US influence voters at the ballot box?

This webinar will not only look more closely at these socio-economic influences, but will also take a deep-dive into recent national and local polling from a data scientific perspective. Panelists will provide a closer look at the impact of data-driven political campaigns and discuss the importance of swing states and of the electoral college to win or lose elections. The webinar aims to provide a scene-setter for observers of US politics a week before Americans head to the polls.

We look forward to you joining us!


Andrew Gelman is professor of statistics and political science at Columbia University. He has received the Outstanding Statistical Application award three times from the American Statistical Association, the award for best article published in the American Political Science Review, and the Council of Presidents of Statistical Societies award for outstanding contributions by a person under the age of 40.

Mark Kayser teaches applied quantitative methods and comparative politics at the Hertie School in Berlin. His core research interests address the economic underpinnings of democracy, including populism, and the effect of electoral competition — both in elections and in coalition governments — on policy-making. He previously was an assistant professor of political science at the University of Rochester, a Postdoctoral Prize Research Fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford and a fellow at the Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.

Mariah Craven works with progressive candidates and campaigns to connect with and mobilize voters, volunteers, and donors. She's worked with a variety of candidates across the US, including: Kamala Harris for US Senate, Karen Bass for Congress, Alex Padilla for California Secretary of State, and Wendy Davis for Governor of Texas. She also served as the executive director of Sea Change Leadership PAC, a political action committee that trained and mobilized thousands of volunteers to help flip the US House of Representatives in the 2018 midterm elections. Mariah is the co-host of the Swing Left podcast "How We Win." She's also the co-creator and writer of a TV series that's currently in development about how grassroots organizers have helped push America closer to fulfilling its promise.

Hosted by the Hertie school in collaboration with Alumni Affairs.