David Plazek

David Plazek
David Plazek
Associate Professor; Director of the Institute for Canadian Studies
Humanities
802.635.1348
Johnson
WLLC, Room 311
Academic History: 
PhD, Political Science, August 2006, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV
MA, May 2005, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV
MPA, May 2002, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Indiana, PA
BA, Political Science, May 1993, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
BA, History, May 1989, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

About David Plazek


When David Plazek learned of an opening at NVU-Johnson in 2012, he leaped at the chance to work at a college that offers a bachelor's degree in his field, political science. He had earned his doctorate in 2006 at West Virginia University and moved to Vermont to teach political science at NVU-Lyndon, but wanted to focus in on his passion.

Born into a politically active family, his interest in politics was nurtured from an early age. But he really caught the political-science bug in the early 1990s when he began work on a second bachelor's degree, in political science, at the University of Pittsburgh, where he had earned an earlier degree in history.

On his bedside table are several books, including China's Imperial Past by Charles Hucker, A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn, Winston Churchill's The Second World War, a Rand McNally Encyclopedia of World War II, and a Jerusalem Bible.

Reflecting his strong interest in Canadian foreign policy, Dr. Plazek launched the Institute of Canadian Studies at NVU-Johnson in 2013 with the goal of enhancing our understanding of our neighbor to the north, and he brought a new course on Canadian politics to campus as well. He also follows American politics closely, and he belongs both to the American Political Science Association and the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States.

Asked how he spends his spare time, David Plazek doesn't hesitate: "I have four children, roughly two years apart - they are my spare time. And I wouldn't change that for the world."

Publications and Presentations


“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1970s”, will be published in The New England Journal of Political Science (expected 2018)

“Lest We Forget: The 70th Anniversary of VE Day” (2016). In Everything That Happened Without Me, I Remember. World War II in the Memories of Generations: Views of Our

Youth in the 21st Century, edited by Victor P. Mokhov. Perm, Russia: Perm State Technical University

Book review (2016), Joining Empire: The Political Economy of the New Canadian Foreign  Policy by Jerome Klassen, in American Review of Canadian Studies 45, 4: 537-538

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1960s” (2015). The New England Journal of Political Science 8, 1: 50-85

“Political Science Funding Black Out in North America? Trends in Funding Should Not be Ignored” (2013). PS: Political Science and Politics, 46, 3: 599-604 (Co-author Alan Steinberg, University of Houston)

“Democratic Foreign Policy and the Cold War: Variations in Behavior During Periods of  International Constraint” (2012). The New England Journal of Political Science 6, 1: 99-155

“Ideology Spotting: An Exercise in Teaching Conservatism and Liberalism” (2012). The Journal of Political Science Education, 8, 2: 168-188

“Town Meetings in Vermont” (2011). In International Experiences in Municipal Management and Self-Government, edited by Victor P. Mokhov.  Perm, Russia: Perm State Technical University.

“Where the Rubber Meets the Road: The Role of Collegiality and Normative Science in Our Profession” (2010). PS: Political Science & Politics 43, 2: 333-336

“The Reflections and Musings of a First-Year Political Scientist in Vermont: The Relevance of Identity in Sub-National Entities” (2008). The New England Journal of Political Science 2, 2: 85-97

Democracies and Foreign Policy: The Influence of Leaders and Institutions on the Foreign  Policies of Democracies (2007). Saarbruecken, Germany: VDM Verlag

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1990”, Association of Canadian Studies in the United States Biennial Conference, Las Vegas NV, October 2017

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1990”, New England Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Provident RI, April 2017

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1980s”, Mid-Atlantic New England Council for Canadian Studies, Portland ME, October 2016

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1980s”, New England Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Newport RI, April 2016

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1970s”, Association for Canadian Studies in the United States Biennial Conference, Las Vegas NV, October 2015

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1970s”, New England Political Science Association Annual Conference, New Haven CT, April 2015

“Realist or Liberal? Canadian Foreign Policy in the 1960s”, New England Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Portland ME, May 2013

“Canadian Foreign Policy: Evolutions in Theoretical Applicability over time”, New England Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Portsmouth NH, April 2012

“Democratic Foreign Policy and the Cold War: Variations in Behavior During Periods of International Constraint”, New England Political Science Association Annual Meeting,

Portland ME, May 2009

“Dictatorial Powers Over Foreign Policy? The Long Shadow of 10 Downing Street”, Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Chicago IL, April 2008

“Power Concentrations in the Executive and Foreign Policy Decision-Making: The Case of the United Kingdom”, New England Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Boston, MA, April 2007

“Does Moving Away from Consensualism Lead to a Walk on the Wild Side? The Case of Italy”, International Studies Association Annual Meeting, Chicago IL, February-March 2007

“Presidents, Leadership Variation, and Foreign Policy Outcomes”, Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Chicago IL, April 2006

“Democracy, Institutional Constraints, and Interstate Disputes: Do Institutional Structures Affect Foreign Policy in Democracies?”, West Virginia Political Science Annual Meeting,

  Charleston, WV, October 2005

“Do Institutions Constrain State Foreign Policy Behavior? The Consensus is They Can”, West Virginia University Eberly College of Arts and Sciences’ Research Poster Session,

Morgantown WV, October 2005

“Democratic Peace Theory and Institutional Variation”, Midwest Political Science Association, Annual Meeting, Chicago IL, April 2005

“Democratic Peace Theory and Institutions”, West Virginia Political Science Association, Annual Meeting, Buckhannon WV, October 2004

“Presidents and the Media: The Ability of Presidents to Shape the News”, Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Chicago IL, April 2004

“President/Media Relations: A Descriptive Analysis”, West Virginia Political Science, Association Annual Meeting, Morgantown WV, October 2003