Faculty & Staff

Michelle Jurkovich, PhD

Assistant Professor of Political Science, College of Liberal Arts


Areas of Expertise

Politics of food security, economic, and social Rights; transnational activism, international organizations, non-governmental organizations


PhD, The George Washington University, 2014
MA, California State University, Los Angeles, 2008
BA, California State University, Fresno (Smittcamp Family Honors College), 2005

Additional Information

Professor Michelle Jurkovich is on leave for the 2017-2018 academic year as an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) S&T fellow based at the Office of Food for Peace at USAID.


Professor Jurkovich's research is motivated by a desire to be both policy-relevant and theoretically driven.  Currently, she is working on a book manuscript on international anti-hunger activism as well as several additional projects, including a comparison of activism across different economic and social rights (education, health, and food). She is especially interested in how and why norms develop (or don’t) around economic and social rights and the causes and effects of blame diffusion in advocacy campaigns.  She is also interested in the nuts and bolts of how different UN organizations and civil society groups measure hunger and how these metrics reflect important differences in how the problem is defined and understood (see her Washington Post/MC piece on this here). Professor Jurkovich has conducted extensive interviews within the anti-hunger advocacy community as well as archival work on the construction of hunger as a global problem at the UN FAO archives in Rome, the UK National Archives, OXFAM’s organizational archives in Oxford, UK, and the US National Archives.  In keeping with her more general curiosity about the (often neglected) role of the Global South in constructing international norms and practices, she published an article with Martha Finnemore titled "Getting a Seat at the Table: The Origins of Universal Participation and Modern Multilateral Conferences," Global Governance, 20, no. 3 (2014): 361-373.  


Previously, Professor Jurkovich was a postdoctoral fellow in international studies at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University.  

For more information on Jurkovich's research or a copy of her CV, please see her website.