Event Information


Scroll down for detailed descriptions of events and streaming versions of past events. All events open to the public.

The Project for an Informed Electorate organizes public events which are designed to help citizens delve into a range of topics related to politics and government. All events are open to the general public. Related programs put on by other organizations are also listed here. Check this page often, as new events will be added as they are planned.  All events are free and open to the public.

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Events in Brief

Politifact California reporter Chris Nichols (Capital Public Radio) presents"A Citizen's Guide to Truth (or not) in Politics", Wed. February 10, noon-1:00 in the Hinde Auditorium in the Student Union at Sacramento State. Flyer.

Past Events

Misinformation in American Politics, Sept. 18,2012 Stream it here.

Presidential Debate Viewing, Oct. 3, 2012 (Wed), React Labs results here.

Vice Presidential Debate Viewing, Oct. 11, 2012 (Thurs), React Labs results here.

2012 CA Initiative Explainer, Campus Version, Oct. 15, 2012 Stream it here.

2012 CA Initiative Explainer, Community Version, Oct. 17, 2012, Airing on Access Sacramento and online.  See below for details.

"Obama Vs. Romney 2012: Who Will Win, and What Will it Mean?", Oct. 24, 2012. Prof. Barker correctly predicted an Obama win.

2012 Election Recap, One week out, Nov. 13, 2012, Stream it here.

"2012 Election Polls: A Conversation with Mark DiCamillo", Nov. 15, 2012, Powerpoints here.

Speed Bumps on China's Road to Modernization, Wed. March 20, 2012.  Union Lobby Suite. Powerpoint here.

The Fiscal Dangers of Misinformed Local Public Engagement, Center for CA Studies, June 2012 Power Point from our Survey Results Presentation.

PIE on Latino USA on NPR, October 18, 2013.  Listen here.

Initiative Explainer, Oct. 21, 2012 Downtown Public Library, Video here -- links available for each Proposition individualy too!

Event Details

Initiative Explainer, Oct. 21, 6 PM, Downtown Sacramento Public Library, Tsakopoulos Galleria

Join us for an evening that CA voters outside of the region will envy.  The 2014 initiatives explained by the analysts who wrote the official ballot pamphlet!  Only in Sacramento.  We will go through each initiative, hear it explained by the Legislative Analyst's office expert, and then PIE will provide data on endorsements and campaign finance.  You can ask questions and come away feeling confident in your informed vote. Partners include the Sacramento Public Library and the Center for California Studies.  Refreshments will be served.  Bring your ballot pamphlet, your questions, and your friends and family!


2003 Gubernatorial Recall 10 Year Anniversary.  November 21 (Thurs.) 6 PM, Mendocino 1015.  Pizza pie will be served!

A screening of the film "Born to Run" documenting the struggles of the "other" candidates in the recall.  After the film, Prof. Molly Dugan will moderate a discussion with the filmmakers Jayson Haedrich and Robbie Stauder, and several of the candidates themselves.  The film and discussion will shed light on the power of the media in campaigns, and the limits of political equality. 

Film Available on reserve at CSUS library.

Is What You "Know" Wrong?: Californian's Political Misinformation, University of California Center, Sacramento, Nov. 7, 2013

Talk given by Prof. Nalder.  Video posted soon.

PIE on Latino USA on NPR, October 18, 2013.  Listen here.

A discussion on the demographic changes in California, and what they mean for politics.

"First Annual Constitution Bowl", Sept, 2013.

Won by the College Republicans, with the bonus round won by the College Democrats.  Co-sponsored with the Center for Calfornia Studies.

"The Fiscal Dangers of Misinformed Local Public Engagement", Wed. June 5, 2013.

The Center for California Studies put on this conference, funded by CDIAC.  PIE Director Kimberly Nalder and ISR Director David Barker  presented fresh poll results.  Details here. 

"Speed Bumps on the Road to China's Modernization", Wed., March 20, 2013, noon, Sacramento State Union Lobby Suite

An informed electorate needs to understand foreign affairs as well as domestic. This one should be fascinating and informative.  Dr. James Rae has recently returned from a fullbright year plus in China.  He will describe the social transformations he has witnessed over his 12 years of visiting China. He will emphasize how the role of the family, the nature of the educational system, and the business environment impact the political culture and economic system. Powerpoint here.

"The Jeff Lustig Symposium", Thur, May 2, 2013, 5:30-8:30, Sacramento State Alumni Center

The Sacramento State Government Department and the Center for California Studies will host a Jeff Lustig Symposium to honor our colleague who passed away in June 2012. Short talks by distinguished speakers will address the themes of Jeff’s work, focusing on California political ideas, history, and culture. There will also be a reception with drinks and appetizers. The event will be free and open to the public.

Confirmed speakers include: Richard Walker (Professor of Geography, Emeritus, UC Berkeley), Pia Lopez (Associate Editor, Sacramento Bee), Charles Postel (Professor of History, San Francisco State University), William A. Dorman (Professor of Government, Emeritus, Sacramento State), John Syer (Professor of Government, Emeritus, Sacramento State), Steve Lustig, (Associate Vice Chancellor Emeritus, UC Berkeley, and Jeff Lustig’s brother).

Misinformation in American Politics

Stream it online.  From the talk on Sept. 18, 2012.

Lecture and discussion of the problem of misinformation in the electorate - when citizens believe political "facts" that are not true.  What are the patterns, explanations, and possible solutions? Original research on California will be presented, along with examples from the 2012 campaign.

Presidential Debate Viewing, Oct. 3 ,  See the reactlabs results here.

Over 130 people showed up to watch the first debate between President Obama and Governor Romney together!  We polled the audience before and after, and had an open post-debate discussion with political scientists there to comment and moderate. 

VP Debate Viewing, Oct. 11 , See the React Labs results here.

Watch the Vice Presidential debate between VP Joe Biden and Representative Paul Ryan.  We will poll the audience before and after, and have an open post-debate discussion with political scientists there to comment and  moderate.  We will provide pizza!

Initiative Explainer, campus version, Oct. 15 (Mon), Streaming video here .

A panel of non-partisan experts, (including Stacy Gordon Fisher, Political Science Professor at UNR and visiting scholar at the Center for California Studies, Kimberly Nalder, PIE Director, and Center for California Studies Director Steve Boilard) unpack the 2012 CA initiatives, including pros and cons, campaign finance, endorsements, etc.  Bring your sample ballot and figure out how you are going to vote!

Initiative Explainer,community version, Oct. 17 (Wed), Sacramento Public Library, aired on Access Sacramento Cable.

A panel of non-partisan experts, (including Nick Robinson, head of the Institute for Governmental Studies library at UC Berkeley, Philip Ung of California Common Cause, and Kimberly Nalder, Director of the PIE) unpack the 2012 CA initiatives, including pros and cons, campaign finance, endorsements, etc.  Bring your sample ballot and figure out how you are going to vote!

"Obama Vs. Romney 2012: Who Will Win, and What Will it Mean?", Oct. 24 (Wed)

Professor David Barker of the University of Pittsburgh, and incoming ISR director, will discussed the ins and outs of presidential contests, forecasting the outcome based on the scientific literature surrounding electoral politics. He will also discussed what to expect over the next four years. He says that models based on fundamentals predict a slim Obama victory, but that a second Obama term wouldn't accomplish much, because of congressional gridlock.

Assessing the 2012 Election: One week out,Nov. 13 (Tues) Stream it here.

A panel of experts will take a look back at the 2012 election.  What impact did new campaign finance rules make?  What strategies worked?  What do the results mean for the state and the country?  Come for a lively discussion.  Prof. Wesley Hussey will cover rules of the game (top-two primary, redistricting) and national results, CCS Director Steve Boilard will cover the CA initiatives and CA races, Prof. David Andersen will discuss foreign policy impacts, and Prof. Stacy Gordon Fisher of UNR and a visiting scholar at the CCS will discuss campaign finance changes.  Don't miss this outstanding panel!

Election Polls: A Conversation with Mark DiCamillo, Nov. 15 (Thurs) Powerpoints here.

Mark DiCamillo, director of the prominent CA statewide Field Poll will report pre-election polls and compare them to the election results.  Mr. DiCamillo will be in conversation with political scientists on topics such as polling methodology, accuracy, and the impact of polls on elections.