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Dr. Kira Sanbonmatsu

Kira Sanbonmatsu is Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University and Senior Scholar at the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP) at the Eagleton Institute of Politics. Her research interests include gender, race/ethnicity, parties, public opinion, state politics, and money in politics. Her most recent book, coauthored with Kelly Dittmar and Susan J. Carroll, is A Seat at the Table: Congresswomen's Perspectives on Why Their Presence Matters (Oxford University Press, 2018). She is also the coauthor (with Susan J. Carroll) of More Women Can Run: Gender and Pathways to the State Legislatures (Oxford University Press, 2013). Sanbonmatsu is the lead author of the CAWP Women, Money, and Politics Series reports and coauthor of other CAWP reports including Poised to Run: Women's Pathways to the State Legislatures (2009). She is also the author of Where Women Run: Gender and Party in the American States (University of Michigan Press, 2006) and Democrats, Republicans, and the Politics of Women's Place (University of Michigan Press, 2002). Her articles have appeared in such journals as Politics, Groups, and Identities and Political Research Quarterly. She co-edits the CAWP Series in Gender and American Politics at the University of Michigan Press with Susan J. Carroll. Sanbonmatsu received her B.A. from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and her Ph.D. from Harvard University.

Areas of Interest

Race/Ethnicity, Political Parties, Public Opinion, State Politics, Money and Politics

Graduate Courses

790:689 Gender and American Politics

790:689 Gender, Race, and the American Party System

Undergraduate Courses

790:335/988:336 Women and American Politics

Current Dissertations, Chair


Past Dissertations, Chair

Dr. Kathleen Rogers, The Symbolic Representation of Women in U.S. Politics - 2021

Undergraduate Theses

Cecilia Ritacco, Rutgers Political Science - Senior

Jackson Snellman, Rutgers Political Science - Senior

Job Placements

Dr. Sanbonmatsu is the job placement director for the Department of Political Science.

2021 Placements

Dr. Zainab Alam- Howard University
Dr. Elizabeth Corredor- Ryerson University
Dr. Kathleen Rogers- APSA Congressional Fellowship

Recent Publications

Greene, Stacey, Yalidy Matos, and Kira Sanbonmatsu. 2022. “Women Voters and the Utility of Campaigning as ‘Women of Color.’” Journal of Women, Politics, & Policy

Matos, Yalidy, Stacey Greene, and Kira Sanbonmatsu. 2021. “The Politics of ‘Women of Color’: A Group Identity Worth Investigating.” Politics, Groups, and Identities

Gothreau, Claire, and Kira Sanbonmatsu. 2021. “Women and Unequal Voice in Governors’ Races: A Study of Campaign Contributions.” Politics, Groups, and Identities. Research note.

Sanbonmatsu, Kira, and Kathleen Rogers. 2020. “Advancing Research on Gender and Gubernatorial Campaign Finance.” Journal of Women, Politics, & Policy. Research note. 41 (3): 351-359.

Dittmar, Kelly, Kira Sanbonmatsu, and Susan J. Carroll. 2018. A Seat at the Table: Congresswomen’s Perspectives on Why Their Presence Matters. New York: Oxford University Press.

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