Professor, Politica Science
Brian Adams joined the political science department at SDSU in 2003 after earning his Ph.D. from the University of California, Irvine. Brian’s research explores why local governments do not live up to their democratic potential.
Brian’s research approaches this question from a few different angles. He has analyzed non-electoral participation in local politics in an effort to assess how citizens participate. His 2007 book Citizen Lobbyists found that citizens take advantage of the many opportunities they have to participate and benefit from their participation in terms of promoting favorable policy and acquiring knowledge about the policy process. A second strand of Brian’s research has examined local elections as a democratic practice. His book Campaign Finance in Local Elections: Buying the Grassroots examines whether the campaign finance system undermines the capacity of local elections to enhance the democratic character of American elections more generally. The final line of research focuses on conceptualizing the relative benefits of local governance.