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Vol.26, No. 19 Apr. 9, 2001

Shapiro Wins Goldsmith Prize for Co-authored Work

By James DeVitt

Political Science Professor Robert Shapiro has been awarded the Goldsmith Book Prize for his work, Politicians Don’t Pander: Political Manipulation and the Loss of Democratic Responsiveness ( University of Chicago Press, 2000), co-authored with Lawrence Jacobs, a political science professor at the University of Minnesota.

In their work, Jacobs ( Columbia, Ph.D., ‘90) and Shapiro contend that public officials do not pander to public opinion. In fact, when not facing election, presidents and members of Congress routinely disregard the public’s policy preferences and follow their own ideologies, as well as the beliefs of their party’s activists, their contributors and their interest-group allies.

The annual award, given by the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, honors books dedicated to improving the quality of government or politics through an examination of the press and government or the intersection of press and politics in creating public policy. The award was established in 1992 and carries a $5,000 cash prize.

Shapiro is chairman of Columbia’s political science department and also has an appointment in the School of International and Public Affairs. He is associate director of Columbia’s Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy. He is also co-author of The Rational Public (University of Chicago Press, 1992) and co-editor of Presidential Power (Columbia University Press, 2000).