Brian J. Gaines

Brian J. Gaines

Senior Scholar, IGPA


Department of Political Science

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Brian Gaines' research deals with all aspects of elections, electoral rules, and public opinion. Some of his recent work has dealt with campaign-finance fraud, pros and cons of convenience voting, inference from survey experiments, and assessing bias in electoral maps, and has appeared in such outlets as the American Statistician, American Journal of Political Science, Journal of Politics, Political Analysis, and State Politics and Policy Quarterly.  He has published op eds in many newspapers in Illinois, the San Jose Mercury News, and the Wall Street Journal. He follows politics in the United States, Canada, the UK, Germany, and, to a lesser extent, Europe and Australia. Two of his major projects at present are a multi-nation survey about parties and partisanship and a study of public opinion about fairness in taxes.

Former Experience

Professor Gaines has been a visiting scholar at the Department of Applied Economics at the Catholic University of Leuven, in Belgium, and at the Institute of International Studies, at Fudan University in Shanghai, China. In 2011-12, he was a W. Glenn Campbell and Rita Ricardo-Campbell National Fellow and the Arch W. Shaw National Fellow at the Hoover Institution.

He served on the (Fisher) Royal Commission for Electoral Boundaries in British Columbia, and has done local redistricting in California.

He has consulted with the (Lortie) Royal Commission on Electoral Reform and Party Financing, Polimetrix, YouGov, CSI, and legal teams working on election-related cases, including vote fraud and early-voting bias.

From July 2011 through December 2015, Professor Gaines was the editor of American Politics Research. From 2010 to 2013 he co-edited The Political Methodologist with Jake Bowers and Wendy Cho. At IGPA, he was the editor of Policy Forum from 2006-2008 and 2009-2011.


AM, PhD: Stanford University, 1989, 1995

BA (honors): University of British Columbia, 1988