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Welcome! I (Dr. Kelly Bauer, she/her/hers) am a political scientist researching and teaching about identity and development politics in Latin America, and knowledge production in political science classrooms. I am an Assistant Professor and Chair of Political Science at Nebraska Wesleyan University, and a member of the Red De Politólogas – #NoSinMujeres. I received my PhD in Political Science at The George Washington University, and BA at Carthage College.

My interdisciplinary teaching and research explore how Latin American states govern identity politics as global trends destabilize state sovereignty; my recent work focuses on state policy responses to and rhetoric about Indigenous rights, irregular migration, and human security regimes. My book, Negotiating Autonomy: Mapuche Territorial Demands and Chilean Land Policy (2021), explores inconsistencies resulting from how state officials navigate extending elite and neoliberal governance and citizenship through Indigenous land policy. Recent work appears in Journal of Agrarian Change, Latin American and Caribbean Ethnic Studies, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, and Canadian Journal of Development Studies /Revue canadienne d’études du développement. This work has been externally funded by the U.S. Fulbright Program (2013), Inter-American Foundation’s Grassroots Development Fellowship (2012-2013), and APSA Centennial Center (2021), and recognized with the North Central Council of Latin Americanists’ Collaborative Research Award (2019), NWU Forum Committee’s Faculty Scholarship Award Presentation Award (2019), and NWU’s Faculty Scholar Award (2020).

My own undergraduate liberal arts experience motivates my teaching. I strive for the classroom to be a space for individual and collective exploration and empowerment, through the development of communication, critical thinking, and research skills. I teach courses on human rights, development, Latin America, and immigration politics, as well as a range of research design and methodology courses. I believe that excellent teaching happens both in and out of the classroom, motivating my work incorporating professional development into classes and conducting student-faculty collaborative research. I have extensive experience mentoring successful Fulbright applications, drawing on my work on Fulbright National Selection Committees and as a campus Fulbright Program Adviser. I also research best practices of teaching and learning to understand student access to and success in the field, particularly in research methodology courses and about research methodology skill development. Recently, this work can be found in the Journal of Political Science Education, New Political Science, and book chapters. My teaching was recognized with NWU’s highest teaching award in 2020. See the teaching page for syllabi, and the research page for my pedagogy research and articles coauthored with students.

For additional information about my work, see media coverage from Nebraska Wesleyan on the Prouty Teaching Award, Oxy Poli-Cast on contentious politics and teaching, The Bridge about student-faculty collaborative immigration research, Lincoln Journal Star about DACA, Nebraska Wesleyan about student-faculty collaborative research, and Carthage College and GWU PSC (Page 3) about research in Chile.