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Sarah Staszak

Faculty and Staff Profiles

Sarah Staszak

Assistant Professor

NAC 4/146B
Phone Number: 
Professor Staszak received her PhD from Brandeis University and is an assistant professor of political science. Her research interests are at the intersection of American politics, public law, policy, and bureaucracy, and she teaches courses on American political institutions, law and policy, and the American state.  Her book, No Day in Court: Access to Justice and the Politics of Judicial Retrenchment (Oxford University Press, 2015) examines the politics and implications of the efforts to constrain access to courts and the legal system as they have unfolded in the years since the expansions of the civil rights era. Her other ongoing research projects involve the growing use of arbitration in the U.S., the provisions of the Americans With Disabilities Act that protect the rights of the mentally ill, medical malpractice reform, and the politics of informal bureaucratic rulemaking. She was previously a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Scholar in Health Policy Research at Harvard University, a postdoctoral Fellow in the Politics Department at Princeton University, and a Brookings Institution Research Fellow in Governance Studies.

Ph.D. Brandeis University, 2010

B.A. Stonehill College

Courses Taught

10100: United States Politics and Government
An analysis of processes, values and problems of American government and democracy. Special emphasis is given to national political institutions and issues. 3 hr./wk.; 3 cr.   

22000: The Judiciary
How courts function in the political system. Examination of the motivations of judges, the social and cultural contexts of courtroom behavior, and role of the judiciary in policy-making. (W) 3 hr./wk.;3 cr.

31204: The American State
An investigation of the political, institutional, and legal development of the American state in the contemporary era. 3 hr./wk.;3 cr.

Articles and Book Chapters
Sarah Staszak, “The Shadow of the Litigation State: Arbitration and Medical Malpractice Reform” (under review).
Daniel Thomas Kryder and Sarah Staszak, “Constitution as Clockwork: The Temporal Foundations of American Politics” (under review).
"Law and Courts" in Falleti, Fioretes, and Sheingate, eds., Handbook on Historical Institutionalism (New York: Oxford University Press, 2016).
"Realizing the Rights Revolution: Litigation and the American State," Law and Social Inquiry 38(1) (Winter 2013).
"Institutions, Rulemaking, and the Politics of Judicial Retrenchment," Studies in American Political Development 24(2) (October 2010), 168-189.


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