People

Thomas H H. Hammond

Professor
Syllabus: PPL 808 Syllabus -- Fall 2010

Thomas H. Hammond is a Professor in the Department of Political Science at Michigan State University. He joined the MSU faculty in 1984, having taught at Purdue University from 1979 to 1984. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California at Berkeley in 1979, and graduated with High Honors in Political Science from Swarthmore College in 1969. In 2002 he was awarded the Herbert A. Simon Award by the Midwest Public Administration Caucus for “significant contributions to the scientific study of bureaucracy.”

Professor Hammond’s main professional interests involve the development of formal models of political institutions. For several decades he has worked on developing theories of bureaucratic hierarchies. Three of his key articles here are “A Social Choice Perspective on Authority and Expertise in Bureaucracy” (American Journal of Political Science, 1985, with Gary Miller), “Agenda Control, Organizational Structure, and Bureaucratic Politics” (American Journal of Political Science, 1986), and “The Impossibility of a Neutral Hierarchy” (Journal of Law, Economics, & Organization, 1989, with Paul Thomas). One of his most recent publications on hierarchies is “Learning in Hierarchies: An Empirical Test Using Library Catalogues” (Journal of Theoretical Politics, 2007, with Kyle Jen and Ko Maeda).He is a coauthor (with Jon Bendor) of “Choice-Theoretic Approaches to Bureaucratic Structure” in the Oxford Handbook of American Bureaucracy, a forthcoming Oxford University Press volume.

Several years ago he began working on long-range project applying his theories of bureaucratic hierarchies to the design and reorganization of the U.S. intelligence community. His first publication in this area is “Why Is the Intelligence Community So Difficult to Redesign?: Smart Practices, Conflicting Goals, and the Creation of Purpose-Based Organizations” (Governance, 2007). A second paper that is nearing completion is “Intelligence Organizations and the Organization of Intelligence: On the Problem of Drawing Inferences from Data Scattered around the Bureaucracy”; this paper reviews some of the history of the WWII Office of Strategic Services (the OSS) and the postwar CIA, with special attention to how intelligence data are catalogued, stored, and retrieved for later use by the intelligence community.

A second major area of Prof. Hammond’s research has involved the development of formal spatial models of the impact of multi-institutionalism (such as the separation-of-powers system in the U.S.) on national politics and policymaking. Two of his articles here are widely-cited: “The Core of the Constitution” (American Political Science Review, 1987, with Gary Miller) and “Who Controls the Bureaucracy?: Presidential Power, Congressional Dominance, Legal Constraints, and Bureaucratic Autonomy in a Model of Multi-Institutional Policymaking” (Journal of Law, Economics, & Organization, 1996, with Jack Knott). An application of these ideas to comparative political institutions is “Some Complex Answers to the Simple Question, ‘Do Institutions Matter?’: Policy Choice and Policy Change in Presidential and Parliamentary Systems” (Journal of Theoretical Politics, 2003, with Christopher Butler). He is currently contemplating writing a book on spatial models of American institutions with Gary Miller of Washington University and Jack Knott of the University of Southern California. This paper would draw together and integrate the 15 or so papers that various combinations of these three authors have previously written.

A third area of interest for Prof. Hammond involves the development of formal models of Supreme Court decision-making. His book, Strategic Behavior and Policy Choice on the U.S. Supreme Court (with Chris Bonneau and Reggie Sheehan) was published by Stanford University Press in 2005; it has been widely cited in the recent judicial politics literature. He published an empirical test of the book’s theories in “Who Controls the Law?: The Majority Opinion Author, the Median Justice, and the Status Quo

on the United States Supreme Court” (American Journal of Political Science, 2007, with Chris Bonneau, Forrest Maltzman, and Paul Wahlbeck). A theoretical paper extending these theories of Supreme Court decision-making to its interactions with the U.S. Courts of Appeals is “A Court of Appeals in a Rational-Choice Model of Supreme Court Decision-Making” (with Chris Bonneau, and Reginald Sheehan) in Jon Bond, Roy Flemming, and James Rogers, eds., Institutional Games and the U.S. Supreme Court (University of Virginia Press, 2006). Prof. Hammond is currently working on two additional papers on Supreme Court decision-making. One paper is an argument that the “legal status quo” plays a critical role in the justices’ decision-making processes. The other paper is a critique of an alternative theory of Supreme Court decision-making that other scholars have been advancing.

A fourth major project involves a formal and historical study of the impact of multi-institutionalism on the origins of the U.S. House and Senate committee systems and leadership structures. The project is being conducted with Professor Nate Monroe of the University of California at Merced. Several convention papers have been presented from this project.

A fifth major project that is nearing completion involves the development of formal models of what are known as “two-level games” in international negotiations. The central question involves what impact domestic veto institutions (such as the U.S. Senate) have on international negotiations conducted by national leaders (such as the president). One paper from the project has been published so far: “Domestic Veto Institutions, Divided Government, and the Status Quo: A Spatial Model of Two-Level Games with Complete Information” (with Brandon Prins) in Robert Pahre, ed., Democratic Foreign Policy Making: Problems of Divided Government and International Cooperation (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006). A book-length manuscript on these two-level games, coauthored with Robert Pahre of the University of Illinois, is almost complete.

Prof. Hammond also has a variety of other scholarly interests. He has read widely in the literature on national security and foreign policy decision-making processes. His 1992 article in the American Political Science Review, titled “Rethinking Allison’s Models” (with Jon Bendor), has been used throughout the world on reading lists for courses on international politics and foreign policy. He also published an article in Public Choice in 2007 on some peculiarities of the scoring method used in cross-country meets in high schools and colleges around the country; it is titled “Rank Injustice?: How the Scoring Method for Cross-County Running Competitions Violates Major Social-Choice Principles.” He also maintains an interest in the development of what might be called “bureaucratic ideologies” or “bureaucratic philosophies” in public agencies.

From 1970 to 1976, while in graduate school, he served as an Aircraft Loadmaster with the U.S. Air Force Reserve. He was qualified as a crewmember on C-124 and C-130 cargo aircraft. His cargo missions on the C-124 included trips to Hawaii, Wake Island, Guam, the Philippines, South Vietnam, and Alaska. His duties as a C-130 loadmaster included airdrop (both paratroopers and cargo loads) as well as aerial forest fire fighting. He served with his fellow C-130 crewmembers in helping fight two large-scale forest fires in Southern California in 1975 and 1976.

In recent years Professor Hammond has taught doctoral courses on comparative political institutions (focusing on chief executives, legislatures, and bureaucracies), and the politics of the presidency and the executive branch in the U.S. His primary undergraduate courses involve bureaucratic politics (with a focus on the institutions involved in military and foreign policy decision-making) and the relationship between politics and economics in democracies.

Recent Publications

  • Hammond, Thomas H., Chris Bonneau, and Reginald Sheehan. 2005. Strategic Behavior and Policy Choice on the U. S. Supreme Court. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. http://www.amazon.com/Strategic-Behavior-Policy-Choice-Supreme/dp/0804751455/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1243454099&sr=1-1
  • Hammond, Thomas H., Chris W. Bonneau, and Reginald S. Sheehan. 2006. “A Court of Appeals in a Rational-Choice Model of Supreme Court Decision-Making,” in Institutional Games and the U.S. Supreme Court, eds. Jon R. Bond, Roy Flemming, and James R. Rogers. Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia Press. http://www.amazon.com/Institutional-Games-Supreme-Constitutionalism-Democracy/dp/0813925274/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1243454460&sr=1-1
  • Hammond, Thomas H., and Brandon C. Prins. 2006. “Domestic Veto Institutions, Divided Government, and the Status Quo: A Spatial Model of Two-Level Games with Complete Information, in Democratic Foreign Policy Making: Problems of Divided Government and International Cooperation, ed. Robert Pahre. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. http://www.amazon.com/Democratic-Foreign-Policy-Making-International/dp/1403974578/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1243454487&sr=1-1
  • Hammond, Thomas H., Kyle I. Jen, and Ko Maeda. 2007. “Learning in Hierarchies: An Empirical Test Using Library Catalogues.” Journal of Theoretical Politics 19 (4): 425-463.
  • Hammond, Thomas H. 2007. “Rank Injustice?: How the Scoring Method for Cross-County Running Competitions Violates Major Social-Choice Principles.” Public Choice 133:3-4 (December): 359-375.
  • Hammond, Thomas H. 2007. “Why Is the Intelligence Community So Difficult to Redesign?: Smart Practices, Conflicting Goals, and the Creation of Purpose-Based Organizations.” Governance 20 (3): 401-422.
  • Bonneau, Chris, Thomas H. Hammond, Forrest Maltzman, and Paul J. Wahlbeck. 2007. “Who Controls the Law?: The Majority Opinion Author, the Median Justice, and the Status Quo on the United States Supreme Court.” American Journal of Political Science, 51 (4): 890-905.