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Identity in Urban-Rural Political Division: Consequences and Solutions

May 23 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Rural America continues to surface in our media as a special place with a unique identity and challenges. What is that identity, how did it develop, and what are the special challenges? Is there an urban/rural divide, and if so, what are the solutions?

To RSVP for the Zoom Webinar: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_uMqowo0DSSy7OxcIda-LyA

To watch the event on Facebook Live: https://www.facebook.com/NFRPP/live_videos/

This event is from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm EST on Thursday, May 23, 2024


Michael Shepherd is an assistant professor in the Department of Government and the Health and Society program. He joined the faculty in 2022 from Vanderbilt University, where he was a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Medicine, Health, and Society and the Data Science Institute. In August 2021, he received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Vanderbilt University. His dissertation, “Unhealthy Democracy: How Partisan Politics is Killing Rural America,” won the 2022 Best Dissertation Award from the Class and Inequality Section of the American Political Science Association. He graduated with a master’s degree from the University of Akron in 2015 and a bachelor’s degree from Murray State University in 2013. Michael’s research interests are in American politics and public policy. Specifically, his work focuses on the politics of health and health policy as well as the experiences of marginalized social groups with the government. Additionally, Michael’s research addresses questions of class and inequality, race and racism, and political communication in American politics

Kristin Lunz Trujillo is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of South Carolina. Her research adopts a political psychology framework to explore mass political behavior, particularly as it relates to the urban-rural divide, identity, trust, and health attitudes. Her work has been funded by the NSF, and she has published in academic journals such as Political Behavior, Public Opinion Quarterly, Political Geography, Political Science Research and Methods, Political Research Quarterly, and Social Science & Medicine, among others. Her work has also won several awards and has appeared in various media outlets, including The New York Times, Newsweek, Forbes, FiveThirtyEight, John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight, Time, and US News and World Report. Before coming to the University of South Carolina, Kristin was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy and at the Network Science Institute at Northeastern University. She completed her Ph.D. in Political Science with a minor in political psychology at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities in 2021.


Event Co-sponsors:



May 23
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm


Webinar and Facebook Live Stream


Network for Responsible Public Policy