Hello! My name is Michael Olson, and I'm a Ph.D Candidate in the Harvard University Department of Government. My research explores the many functions of political parties in American legislative and electoral politics, using data from across history and levels of government. In this spirit, my dissertation attempts to better understand the legislative functions of political parties by examining the most prominent example of one-party governance in American history, the "Solid South." To do so, I am collecting original data on state legislative roll call voting and committee assignments from this era, offering a new level of insight into the character of one-party government in America.
When I'm not working, I enjoy fishing Spy Pond and the Charles River, exploring the Boston-Cambridge area on foot and bike, and watching Chicago Cubs baseball.
You can access my CV here.