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Rubenson, Daniel



PhD (Government): London School of Economics




(416) 979-5000 x 4052

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Daniel Rubenson is Professor in the Department of Politics and Public Administration, and a member of the Yeates School of Graduate Studies, at Ryerson University. In addition to a PhD (Government) from the London School of Economics, he holds degrees from Lund University, Sweden.

Before joining Ryerson in 2006, Daniel Rubenson held a Postdoctoral Fellowship at l'Université de Montréal with the Canadian Election Study and the Canada Research Chair in Electoral Studies. He teaches courses in comparative politics, political behaviour and research methods.

Research Interests:

Dr. Rubenson’s research interests are in comparative politics, generally. Specifically, he works on questions of political behaviour, political participation, campaigns, political communication and the political economy of development. While he employs a variety of methods - including experimentation, econometric analysis, qualitative methods and survey work - he is focused on using identification driven designs to draw causal inferences about politics. Mostly this involves using field experiments in cooperation with political campaigns, organizations and policy makers.

His current projects include large scale field experiments on the effects of property rights on economic, social and political outcomes; a series of SSHRC funded studies on how citizen preferences shape the behaviour of politicians; a second SSHRC funded project on the effects of perceptions of the racial and ethnic diversity of communities on political participation and attitudes; and a series of papers examining how images of and information about war affects behaviour and attitudes. 

His research has been featured in various media including the CBC, Maclean's, the Toronto Star, the National Post, TVO's “The Agenda,” CTV, and the Canadian Press.

Selected Publications:


  • “Non-Electoral Motivations to Represent Marginalized Groups: Evidence From an Unelected Legislature” [wieth John McAndrews (UofT), Jonah Goldberg (UofT), Peter Loewen (UofT), and Benjamin Allen Stevens (UofT)].  Legislative Studies Quarterly, forthcoming.
  • “When do politicians pursue more policy information?” [with John McAndrews (UofT) and Peter Loewen (UofT)]. Journal of Experimental Political Science, forthcoming.
  • “Policy Deliberation and Voting Behavior: A Campaign Experiment in the Philippines” [with Thomas Fujiwara (Princeton University), Gabriel López-Moctezuma (CalTech), Cecilia Pe Lero (University of Notre Dame) and Leonard Wantchekon (Princeton University)]. American Journal of Political Science, forthcoming.
  • Leadership and Expectations: Local and National Conditions in the 2015 Canadian Elections [with Peter John Loewen (UofT) and Royce Koop (Manitoba)].  Toronto: University of Toronto Press (under contract).


  • Evaluation of the 2019 Federal Leaders’ Debates. [with John R. McAndrews (UofT), Aengus Bridgman (McGill), Peter John Loewen (UofT), Laura B. Stephenson (Western), and Allison Harell (UQAM).  Ottawa: Leaders’ Debate Commission (January 2020): 1–91.
  • “Maps in People's Heads as a New Measure for Context” [with Cara Wong (UIUC-University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Jake Bowers (UIUC-University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Mark Fredrickson (University of Michigan), and Ashlea Rundlett (University of Rhode Island)]. Political Science Research and Methods 8:1 (January 2020): 160-68.
  • Duty and Choice: Voter Turnout and Choice in the World's Electoral Systems. [ed. with Peter John Loewen (UofT)].  Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019.
    • “Choice and Duty: The Evolution of the Study of Voting and Voters” [with Peter John Loewen (UofT) and Maxime Héroux-Legault (Concordia)].  In Duty and Choice: Voter Turnout and Choice in the World's Electoral Systems, ed. Peter John Loewen and Daniel Rubenson, 3-18.  Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019.
    • “The Future of Election Studies and the Study of Elections” [with Peter John Loewen (UofT) and André Blais (Montréal)]. In Duty and Choice: Voter Turnout and Choice in the World's Electoral Systems, ed. Peter John Loewen and Daniel Rubenson, 274-85.  Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019.
  • “Local Candidate Effects in Canadian Elections” [with Benjamin Allen Stevens (UofT), Md Mujahedul Islam (UofT), Roosmarijn de Geus (UofT), Jonah Goldberg (UofT), John McAndrews (UofT), Alex Mierke-Zatwarnicki (Harvard), and Peter John Loewen (UofT)]. Canadian Journal of Political Science 52:1 (March 2019): 83-96.
  • “Information on party strength and strategic voting: Evidence of non-effects from a randomized experiment” [with André Blais, (Université de Montréal), Peter John Loewen (UofT), Laura Stephenson (Western) and Elisabeth Gidengil (McGill)]. In The Many Faces of Strategic Voting: Tactical Behavior in Electoral Systems Around the World, ed. John Aldrich, André Blais and Laura Stephenson, 89-104.  Ann Arbor, MI:  University of Michigan Press, 2018.
  • “The Value of Preregistration for Open and Credible Science: An Initiative from the Journal of Experimental Political Science" [with Kevin Arceneaux (Temple University), Rick Wilson (Rice University), Cheryl Boudreau (University of California at Davis), Sarah Bush (Yale University), Jennifer Jerit (Stony Brook University), Jaime Settle (College of William & Mary), Betsy Sinclair (Washington University in St Louis), Jonathan Woon (University of Pittsburgh), Elizabeth Zechmeister (Vanderbilt University)]. Journal of Experimental Political Science 5:3 (Winter 2018): 165-6.
  • "The Impact of News Photos on Support for Military Action” [with Stuart Soroka (University of Michigan), Peter Loewen (University of Toronto) and Patrick Fournier (Université de Montréal)]. Political Communication 33:4 (October 2016): 563–82.
  • “Replication data for: 'The impact of news photos on support for military action' " [with Stuart Soroka (University of Michigan), Peter Loewen (University of Toronto), and Patrick Fournier (Université de Montréal)].  Harvard Dataverse, 27 October 2016. DOI:
  • Elements of Political Persuasion: Content, Charisma, and Cue” [with Torun Dewan (London School of Economics) and Macartan Humphreys (Columbia University)]. The Economic Journal, 124 (February 2014): F257-F292.
  • “The Source of Turnout Decline: New Values or New Contexts?” [with André Blais, (Université de Montréal)]. Comparative Political Studies 46:1 (January 2013): 95-117.
  • “Geographic Mobility, Social Connections and Turnout” [with Keith Dowding (Australian National University) and Peter John (University College London)].  Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties: 22:2 (April 2012): 109-22.
  • “Testing the Power of Arguments in Referendums: A Bradley-Terry Approach” [with Peter Loewen (UofT) and Arthur Spirling (Harvard)]. Electoral Studies 31 (2012): 212-21.
  • “Experiments.”  In Explorations: Conducting Empirical Research in Canadian Political Science, 2nd ed., ed. Keith Archer and Loleen Berdahl, 200-211.  Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2011.
  • Entry on “Social Capital” in Encyclopedia of Power, ed. Keith Dowding.  Thousand Oaks CA: Sage, 2011.
  • "For want of a nail: Negative persuasion in a party leadership race" [with Peter John Loewen (UofT)].  Party Politics 17:1 (January 2011): 45-65.   
  • “Help me help you: Conducting field experiments with political elites” [with Peter Loewen (UofT) and Leonard Wantchekon (Princeton)].  Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 628:1 (March 2010): 165-75.
  • “Strategies for dealing with nonoverlapping units of assignment and outcome measurement in field experiments” [with Ana De La O (Yale)].  Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 628:1 (March 2010): 189-99.
  • “Does Low Turnout Matter? Evidence from the 2000 Canadian General Election”[with André Blais (UdeM), Patrick Fournier (UdeM), Elisabeth Gidengil (McGill), and Neil Nevitte (UofT)]. Electoral Studies 26:3 (September 2007): 589-97.
  • “Accounting for the Age Gap in Turnout” [with André Blais (UdeM), Patrick Fournier (UdeM), Elisabeth Gidengil (McGill), and Neil Nevitte (UofT)]. Acta Politica 39:4 (2004): 407–21.
  • “Tennis och Politik: Är Deltagadande en Dygd?” (“Tennis and Politics: Is Political Participation a Virtue?”) [with Andreas Bergh (Lund)]. In En Uthållig Demokrati? Sju Repliker till Demokratiutredningen, ed. Jesper Strömbäck, 12-41. Uppsala: Uppsala Publishing House, 2001.

Working Papers:

  • “Democratic Competition Increases Voter Participation” [with Peter Loewen(UofT) and Ryan Moore (WUSTL)].

  • “The Impact of News Photos on Support for Military Action” [with Stuart Soroka (McGill), Peter Loewen (UofT) and Patrick Fournier (UdeM)].

  • “Does the Context Fit the Outcome: When (or Where) Context Should Affect Politics” [with Cara Wong (Illinois@U-C), Jake Bowers (Illinois@U-C), Mark Fredrikson (Illinois@U-C) and Ashlea Rundlett (Illinois@U-C)].

  • “Canadian War Deaths in Afghanistan: Costly Policies and Support for Incumbents” [with Peter Loewen, UofT].

  • “The End of Majorities: The Transformation of Cleavage Politics in Advanced Democracies” [with Marc André Bodet (Laval)].

  • “Interaction and Malefaction” [with Richard Walker (Northwestern)].

Professional Affiliations:

Dr. Rubenson is an affiliated researcher at the Research Institute for Industrial Economics (IFN) in Stockholm and a member researcher of Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) in New Haven, a member of Experiments in Governance and Politics (EGAP) and a faculty affiliate with the Centre for Public Opinion and Representation at Simon Fraser University.

Spoken Languages:

English, Swedish, French