Mentors and Giants: An Interview with Christopher Achen | March 26, 2014 | Reply | Continue reading â†’ | Leave a reply
Mentors and Giants: An Interview with Christopher Achen | Opinion - Policy Nexus
Mentors and Giants: An Interview with Christopher Achen
Christopher Achen is Roger Williams Straus Professor of Social Sciences and Professor of Politics at Princeton University.
According to his bio, he "was the first president of the Political Methodology Section of the American Political Science Association, and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
One of the first names that came immediately to mind was Chris Achen
I remember reading his
monograph, Intermediate Regression Analysis (Sage: 1982), at UofT, which, although dated, really helped me get a handle on the logic and math underpinning regression analysis.
As well, although I'm sure there were others, at the time I thought he
was one of the few "big names" in political science who was rallying against a certain methodological trend of "dumping" as many variables as one could into regression models and magically finding statistical significant relationships.
And so I really wanted to meet him!
accepted my invitation and his
public talk and workshop were amazing.
An added bonus was that Chris
was such a nice, humble, and encouraging guy.
I made a lot of rookie mistakes during my first year at Laurier, including taking Chris
to a bit of a "dumpy" bar instead of a fancy restaurant (darn budget!).
But rather than complain, he
happily had a beer and burger with the rest of us and told me he
preferred the bar to the fancy restaurant (even though I'm sure that's not true)!
Even though I haven't spent very much time with Chris
in person, I count him both as a giant and a mentor to me.
work and his
visit to Laurier had a profound effect on how I have pursued my academic career so far.