Udi Sommer

Udi Sommer
Associate Professor of Political Science


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Tel Aviv University, Naftali 529
Ramat Aviv, Tel Aviv, ISRAEL


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I am an associate professor at the School of Political Science, Government and International Relations. I have been a member of the Global Young Academy since 2019 and of the Scientific Council of the Blavatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center and the Center for the Study of the United States at Tel Aviv University with the Fulbright Program. I was Chairperson of the Israel Young Academy from 2018-2019 and co-chaired the Israeli Cyber Forum at Columbia University, while teaching political science at Columbia from 2016-18. 


My broad research interests are in Comparative and American Politics, Politics of Sexuality and Gender, Judicial politics, pandemics and politics, and Cyber Security. My scholarship has appeared in over 35 peer reviewed publications such as Regulation & GovernancePolitical BehaviorWorld DevelopmentDemographyPublic AdministrationJournal of Public PolicyComparative Political StudiesThe Law & Society ReviewJournal of Empirical Legal Studies, Political StudiesJudicature, and the Justice System Journalamong others. My third scholarly book was published with Cambridge in 2019 and focused on the Production of Reproductive RightsMy book about agenda setting on the Supreme Court of the United States was published in 2014 with Palgrave-MacMillan and my book about sexual minority rights in a comparative perspective was published with SUNY Press in 2016. My popular nonfiction book about Israeli parents in America was published in Hebrew in 2010 and was broadly covered by the media.


I am recipient of several grants and fellowships. In 2018, with colleagues from across the TAU campus, I co-lead a multidisciplinary team at Tel Aviv University to win a grant of 1 Million New Israeli Shekels for 3 years from the US State Department and the Fulbright Program to found a new Center for the Study of the United States at Tel Aviv. In addition, I won the Marie Curie Grant, a Fulbright Doctoral Fellowship and the National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant. My work has been presented at the annual meetings of the American, European, Midwest, Southern and Western Political Science Associations and I have been invited to give talks in China, India, Norway and the United States. I have teaching experience at the graduate and undergraduate levels at Columbia University of New York, Tel Aviv University, Stony Brook University, SUNY Albany, Southwest University (Chongqing 西南大学) and the Open University.


I appear as expert commentator on WKGO San Francisco, Israeli TV Channels 11, 12 & 13, Christian Science Monitor, Haaretz.com (English), ynet.co.il, Haaretz newspaper, Galatz Israeli Radio and Knesset TV Channel. Likewise, I am regularly engaged in community service on and off campus including giving talks to the general public, advising government and NGOs, being invited to give a commencement speech, and volunteering with individuals with disabilities. Prior to my academic career, I had been the founder and director of several social programs for youth of underprivileged background, including at Dor Shalom (Generation for Peace) and the Summer Youth University, and had had advanced training in clinical psychology.