University at Albany
 
Michael J. Malbin, PhD

Distinguished Service to the College

Michael J. Malbin, PhD
Professor of Political Science
Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy

Director of the Semester in Washington Program
University at Albany

Co-Founder and Executive Director
The Campaign Finance Institute



Michael J. Malbin has been a University at Albany Professor of Political Science since 1990, after seventeen years as a reporter, think tank scholar and government appointee in Washington, D.C. One consistent thread in his work has been the dynamics of institutional change and reform. To some extent, that interest grew serendipitously. He had the professional good luck of landing in Washington, with new PhD in hand (Cornell, 1973), just as the Watergate hearings were being played out on Capitol Hill. As a result, his earlier publications focused on congressional reform, party reform and congressional staffing – along with what has become an abiding interest in the role of money in politics. Since 1999 he has been able to pursue this last line of research as director of The Campaign Finance Institute in Washington.

Professor Malbin's teaching has emphasized legislative politics and elections. For the last eighteen years, he has directed the University's Semester in Washington program for advanced undergraduate students during the spring semester. The program is an integral part of the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy's Department of Political Science, bringing our Albany-based students to Washington, D.C. for a semester to live and work in the nation's capital. The program has served as a launch pad for many of its alumni who have gone on to hold prominent positions.