Scholar Spotlight: Michael McDonald

  • Voting
  • Revitalizing U.S. Democracy
  • State & Local Government

The midterm elections are about a month away, so this week's scholar spotlight shines on Michael McDonald, a professor at the University of Florida and leader of the United States Elections Project. His research on American voter demographics has been key to tracking how primary elections are stacking up and what that means for November's ballots. Lately, the New York Times used Michael's work to analyze midterm early voting turnout, and he was quoted in Talking Points Memo to explain Florida's voter disenfranchisement.

Scholar Spotlight

University of Florida

McDonald specializes in the American electoral system. Leading the United States Elections Project, he calculates turnout rates that are widely used by academics, media, and policymakers. As co-leader of the Public Mapping Project – an effort to increase transparency and public participation in redistricting – he helped develop DistrictBuilder, open-source web-based redistricting software. He has worked to improve election administration through projects with the Federal Voting Assistance Project and the Pew Center for the States, among others. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the Non-Profit Voter Engagement Network, the largest source of nonpartisan resources to help nonprofits integrate voter engagement into their ongoing activities and services.