Barack Obama Presidential Conference

In cooperation with the Barack Obama Presidential Library, National Archives and Records Administration.

April 19-21, 2023

On April 19-21, 2023 Hofstra University hosted its thirteenth Presidential Conference on the Barack Obama Presidency coordinated by the Hofstra Cultural Center, the Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, and the Peter S. Kalikow Center for the Study of the American Presidency. Hofstra has a long and distinguished tradition of hosting conferences on the administrations of all the Presidents of the United States who have served during the University's lifetime, from Franklin Delano Roosevelt forward.

During each conference, Hofstra brings together scholars, policy makers, and journalists for a series of panels and roundtables to discuss a president's campaign, political leadership, policy agenda, and legacy. Often the Hofstra conference is the first opportunity for scholars, journalists, and administration officials to come together to debate the issues of that period in history. The University has published volumes of selected articles and commentary from every conference, which have become standard scholarly volumes and early oral histories of each presidency.

Scholarly publications from Hofstra’s Thirteenth Presidential Conference: The Barack Obama Presidency – Hope and Change are available in multiple sources. A few are included here with hyperlinks when available. Additional information will be added as shared by scholars.

Keynote Address by Joseph G. Astman Distinguished Conference Scholar

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Harris-Perry

Professor Melissa Harris-Perry is the Maya Angelou Presidential Chair in the Department of Politics and International Affairs, the Department of Women and Gender Studies, and the Program in Environment and Sustainability at Wake Forest University.

There she teaches courses on American politics at the intersections of race, place, and gender.

Melissa serves as host and managing editor of The Takeaway, a daily, national public radio program and podcast distributed by WNYC and PRX. Professor Harris-Perry is founder and president of the Anna Julia Cooper Center, whose mission is to advance justice through intersectional scholarship and action. And along with Dorian Warren, Harris-Perry is co-creator and co-host of The Takeaway’s special project Deep Dives with MHP and Dorian and the podcast System Check.

Conference Photos

 

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Bookcover of Evaluating The Obama Presidency

Evaluating the Obama Presidency
From Transformational Goals to Governing Realities

Edited by: Meena Bose and Paul Fritz
Volume 1 in the series De Gruyter Series in Presidential Politics, Leadership, and Policy Making

About this book
In 2007 and 2008, Barack Obama ran for president with a message of a shared purpose uniting all Americans, and was elected with expectations that he would usher in a new national culture under an approach grounded in public engagement that would transcend partisan divisions. But in an institutional system designed for incremental and contested policy-making governance, enacting these transformational ambitions proved to be far more difficult than anticipated.

This innovative volume assesses the legacy of President Obama, with a conceptual focus on the challenge of meeting his goals with the realities of governing. A diverse group of political science, history, and communication studies experts systematically examines Obama’s performance, accomplishments, and shortcomings through the lens of the expectations gap – the tensions and obstacles of translating campaign promises into policies.

The wide, representative set of case studies address campaigning and coalition building, party polarization, presidential communication, executive power, leadership and decision-making, and domestic and foreign policy. With original and deep analysis, these scholars make a unique, enduring contribution to understanding the Obama presidency, the office of the president, and indeed American politics. This insightful, accessible book will be of great interest to students and scholars of the presidency, political communication & rhetoric, and broadly across US government and democracy.

Provides a variety of disciplinary perspectives and a mix of expert contributors
Meets the need for a current, timely, unique work on the presidency
Previously published volumes on Obama’s presidency fail to have a clear unifying conceptual framework

Author / Editor information
Meena Bose, Hofstra University, New York, USA.
Paul Fritz, Hofstra University, New York, USA.

Archive of Selected Conference Papers

Several scholars have shared their original research presented at the Obama Conference to include in the conference archive here.

 


Hofstra Horizons Spring 2024

This publication features research from Hofstra’s Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, including two articles originally presented at the Obama Conference.


Conference Program and Selected Event Recordings

Plenary conference events are available for viewing. C-SPAN recorded three plenary sessions – on Foreign Policy, Executive Branch Policy Making, and First Lady Michelle Obama’s Leadership and Legacy – which may be viewed here.

Hofstra recorded the other plenary sessions, which may be viewed on the University’s YouTube channel.

THE PROMISE OF HOPE AND CHANGE – OBAMA’S ELECTION AND PRESIDENCY

MEDIA COVERAGE OF THE OBAMA PRESIDENCY – CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES

FROM WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS TO POLICYMAKING – PLANNING AND STRATEGIES

KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Melissa Harris-Perry, PhD, Mayo Angelou Presidential Chair
Wake Forest University
Joseph G. Astman Distinguished Conference Scholar 
How Did the Obama Presidency Transform American Politics? 
Leadership, Policymaking, and Legacy

HOFSTRA SPEECH AND DEBATE TEAM, “EVALUATING THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT”

ENACTING THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT

EVALUATING THE LEGACY OF THE OBAMA PRESIDENCY

About the Conference

For information on prior presidential conferences, please see www.hofstra.edu/presidential-conferences

Conference Director

Bose

Meena Bose
Executive Dean, Public Policy and Public Service Programs
Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs
Director, Peter S. Kalikow Center for the Study of the American Presidency
Peter S. Kalikow Chair in Presidential Studies
Professor of Political Science

Associate Conference Director

Himmelfarb

Richard Himelfarb
Professor of Political Science

Research Director

Fritz

Paul Fritz
Associate Professor of Political Science

Photos courtesy of the Barack Obama Presidential Library, https://www.obamalibrary.gov/