With the generous support of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, members of the Notre Dame International Security Program have assembled two data-bases to examine the larger question of when and how academic social is of use to national security policymakers.
Working with the Teaching, Research and International Policy (TRIP) project at the College of William and Mary, we administered a unique policymaker survey that provides the only systematic evidence to date of what the highest-level national security decision-makers want from academic international relations scholars. Our findings are summarized in Paul C. Avey and Michael C. Desch, “What Do Policymakers Want From Us? Results from a Survey of Current and Former Senior National Security Decision-makers,” International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 58, No. 4 (December 2014): [forthcoming]. The raw data and two appendices to the original paper are available here.
Another component of our Carnegie Relevance Project is to explore how traditional academic disciplinary rankings might skew the sort of work scholars undertake and highlight how different sets of criteria based upon sub-field criteria and broader relevance could produce very different rankings. To illustrate this, we have ranked the top fifty political science departments based on 37 different measures of scholarly excellence and broader policy relevance of their international relations faculty. We have also done the same thing for the 442 individual scholars in that group. We invite you to look at all the different ways we can look at this data and see what you think it tells us about academic rankings and which measures you think are most important.