Department of History & Political Science
Nick Robinson’s research interests investigate the relationship between urban redevelopment policies and community resistance to the effects of gentrification in American cities. Specifically, he considers whether community benefits agreements can serve as instruments to effectively mediate between the expressed preferences of neighborhood residents and developers’ interests in long-term growth and profitability. Moreover, he utilizes insights from contemporary democratic political theory to explore the shortcomings of such agreements as well as find solutions that can improve their capacity to reflect a wide range of interests, and particularly those of traditionally underrepresented constituencies. In other research, Nick has focused on the uses and controversies surrounding eminent domain in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware.
Nick earned his PhD in Political Science at Temple University. At Otterbein, he teaches courses on American politics and political theory. A core conviction that guides his teaching is that, rather than being separate and isolated from the ‘real world,’ the classroom is a place to problematize and explore solutions that can lead to a more just world.
Robinson was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Having lived and gone to school there, the opportunity to observe social and economic change over the long-term has been formative in shaping his commitment to observation-based political science in conjunction with normative analysis. In his free time, Nick likes running, exploring used bookstores, rowing, and listening to Philly sports talk radio.