Ph.D. students and alumni attend Southern Political Science Association meeting
Conferences, job talks, workshops, and visiting speaker series bring political scientists and other scholars to campus. We strongly recommend Ph.D. students attend relevant events of interest on campus. Attendance at these events is a key part of professionalization and education.  Many are sponsored by the Center for International Studies and the Political Institutions and Political Economy (PIPE) Collaborative.
USC POIR encourages all students to present their research at professional meetings and conferences such as the American Political Science Association (APSA), International Studies Association (ISA), Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA), and the Western Political Science Association (WPSA). To support this initiative, the department has instituted student travel awards to help offset the costs of travel to these conferences.

  • Proposal Deadline: February 1, 2024
    The EMW aims to foster a new generation of methodologists in the qualitative and multi-method research community. Advanced graduate students, post-docs, and junior faculty from under-represented groups who are based at US institutions and are developing a paper that focuses on methods for generating and/or analyzing qualitative data, or for multi-method research, are encouraged to submit a proposal to present their work at the EMW. Empirical papers do not qualify for presentation at the workshop.The EMW takes place annually on the day before the start of the American Political Science Association (APSA) meeting. Workshops run as invitation-only pre-conference short courses sponsored by the Qualitative and Multi-Method Research (QMMR) section of APSA. This year the EMW will take place on Wednesday, September 4, in Philadelphia, PA. The workshop is supported by generous funding from the National Science Foundation.
    The workshop covers round-trip airfare, two nights at a conference hotel, meals and refreshments during the workshop, and the $25 workshop fee for each presenter. In addition, each presenter is paired with a mentor who helps them to develop their methodological scholarship in advance of the workshop, and continues to work with them after the workshop to prepare their research for submission to a peer-reviewed journal.
    You can find more information on the EMW’s website:
    Please refer to these instructions for submitting a proposal.
    We also plan to hold a webinar in January (day/time TBD) for those interested in learning more about the EMW.

Travel Awards

    Application Guidelines

    POIR will award up to 15 students each year with an award of up to $750 for domestic travel and up to $1000 for international travel, depending on the availability of funding.

    Students may only apply for a travel award once each year and priority will be given to applicants who have not received funding in the past.


    1. Applicants must currently be enrolled in the POIR Ph.D. program and in good standing.
    2. Applicants must have received an official confirmation of acceptance for their presentation from the meeting organizers.
    3. The presentation must be related to the applicant’s current studies/research and at least some of the material being presented should have been produced as a result of their POIR studies.
    4. Applicants must have their advisor’s approval.

    How to Apply

    Applicants must submit a Travel Award Application Form to the POIR Graduate Office at least 60 days prior to the conference/meeting date.

    In a single .pdf file, applicants should upload the following documents to the application form:


    • A Conference & Travel Award Application signed by both the applicant and their advisor.
    • A copy of the call for papers.
    • A copy of the official confirmation of their acceptance to present.
    • A copy of the paper abstract.



    If approved, funds will be distributed after the conference has taken place and the student has submitted an expense form for reimbursement.

    Reimbursement Procedure

    Applicants must submit the POIR Expense Form within 10 days after their return to Aurora Ramirez. Please allow up to 45 days for reimbursement.

    Applicants must include the following documents with the Expense Form:


    • A copy of the signed approval form with the authorized total award.
    • Original receipts for all expenses for which reimbursement is requested with the method of payment included. Please only submit expenses up to the amount approved.
    • Proof of conference participation.
    • A copy of the program, including the page where the applicant’s name appears.



    Only legitimate travel expenses will be considered for reimbursement. Per University policy, POIR will only reimburse for the value of a coach airfare and standard rideshare/taxi fare. Alcohol expenses will not be reimbursed.