Michael Byron Nelson
Associate Professor and Co-Chair, Political Science
Director, Center for Civic and Social Change
Instructor, Rock Climbing
I have always been interested in understanding how and why different parts of the world get along with each other, with the challenges of poverty and inequality, and with the incredible varieties of cultures.
I have served as a Peace Corps volunteer (Ghana, 1997-99). I have consulted for the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization and the U.S. government on global food politics, economic development, and China’s role in Africa. I served as editor for the African Politics Conference Group Newsletter for four years. Now, I have the privilege to teach students at Monmouth and direct our Center for Civic and Social Change.
My first training in rock climbing happened decades ago with the Yosemite Mountaineering School. More recently, I received certification from the Climbing Wall Association as an instructor for bouldering, top rope, and lead climbing. My recent outdoor climbing has taken me to Pictured Rocks (Iowa), Jackson Falls and Holy Boulders (Illinois), and the Gunks (New York).
African Politics, Environmental Politics, Foreign Policy, Global Governance, International Relations, Political Philosophy.
B.A. – University of California, San Diego, 1997
Ph.D. – University of California, Berkeley, Political Science, 2008
POLS 150 Global Justice
POLS 230 Political Philosophy
POLS 250 European Politics
POLS 270 International Relations
POLS 361 Africa in World Politics
POLS 375 Environmental Politics
POLS 415 Senior Seminar
PHED 139 Rock Climbing
Nelson, Michael. “Ghana: Continuity Among Democratic Elites.” In John Clark, ed. Political Identity and African Foreign Policies. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner. Forthcoming 2024.
Nelson, Michael. African Coalitions in Global Economic Governance. Cambridge University Press. 2016.
Nelson, Michael. “Africa’s Regional Powers and Climate Change Negotiations.” Global Environmental Politics, Vol. 16, No. 2, Pages 110-129. May 2016.
“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be lit.”