James Endersby

James Endersby
American Politics
615 Locust Street
PDF Documents: 

James Endersby (Associate Professor) has been with the Department of Political Science since 1991. He received his Ph.D. in 1990 from the University of Texas and specializes in American political behavior (voting and elections), formal political theory, and research methods. Endersby also serves as the director of Canadian Studies at the University of Missouri. He was past president of the Southwestern Political Science Association (2015-2016) and the Midwest Association for Canadian Studies (2007-2009).


My research agenda is broad but focuses on strategic decisions made by political actors, typically in a mass behavior setting.  Primarily, I am interesting in empirical applications of spatial models of political decision-making as this relates to voter participation in elections and in voter choice among candidates and parties on the ballot. Thus, my research agenda centers on real-world tests of formal theoretical models of why people behave the way they do. A first application to this are studies of the role of information on voter decisions. Most political information processed by citizens in a modern democracy comes filtered through the socialization process and the news presented in the mass media. A second area of research interest is voter reaction to the set of possible choices offered to them. Voters may engage in strategic or sophisticated voting, opting for a second or subsequent preference in order to maximize their own perceived utility. A third element providing context-dependent decisions is the role of the electoral system, the translation of declared voter preferences into political representation and its influence on citizens’ decisions to participate and make choices in an electoral environment. A fourth empirical application is an investigation of voter turnout within the United States and cross-nationally. Although the development of political theory has been dominated by our understanding of American political behavior, my research includes comparing research on the United States with evidence cross-nationally or in other nations with similar characteristics such as Canada, Britain, and other democratic countries.

  • Advanced Political Methodology (graduate)
  • American Government (undergraduate)
  • Canadian Politics and Government (undergraduate)
  • Formal Political Analysis (undergraduate and graduate)
  • Interest Groups (undergraduate and graduate)
  • Introductory Statistics for Political Science (undergraduate and graduate)
  • Introduction to Political Research (undergraduate)
  • Linear Models in Politics (graduate)
  • Political Behavior (undergraduate and graduate)
  • Politics and the Media (undergraduate and graduate)
Selected Publications: 

Lloyd Gaines and the Fight to End Segregation (with William T. Horner), University of Missouri Press (2016).

“Making Wasted Votes Count: Turnout, Transfers, and Preferential Voting in Practice” (with Michael J. Towle), Electoral Studies 33: 1 (March 2014), 144-152. 

“Turnout around the Globe: The Influence of Electoral Institutions on National Voter Participation, 1972-2000” (with Jonathan T. Krieckhaus), Electoral Studies 27: 4 (December 2008), 601-610. 

James W. Endersby, John R. Petrocik, and Daron R. Shaw. 2006. “Electoral Mobilization in the United States.” In Richard S. Katz and William J. Crotty, eds., Handbook of Political Parties, London: Sage Publications, pp. 316-336.

Jay K. Dow and James W. Endersby. 2004. “Multinomial Probit and Multinomial Logit: A Comparison of Choice Models for Voting Research.” Electoral Studies 23: 1 (March), 107-122.

James W. Endersby, Steven E. Galatas, and Chapman B. Rackawy. 2002. “Closeness Counts in Canada: Voter Participation in the 1993 and 1997 Federal Elections.” Journal of Politics 64: 2 (May), 610-631.

“Objectivity Revisited: A Spatial Model of Political Ideology and Mass Communication” (with Ekaterina Ognianova), Journalism and Mass Communication Monographs 159 (October 1996).

“Rules of Method and Rules of Conduct: An Experimental Study of Two Types of Procedure and Committee Behavior,” Journal of Politics 55:1 (February 1993), 218-236.