Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs

Rose McDermott

+1 401 863 2833
111 Thayer Street, Room 343

Downloadable CV

Rose McDermott

David and Marianna Fisher University Professor of International Relations


I work on a wide variety of different topics. Current projects include a large series of survey experiments examining nine types of attitudes toward gender inequality in 18 countries. I am participating in several projects related to nuclear weapons and the stability of deterrence. I am also currently involved in a series of projects related to ethical considerations in implementing field experiments. More broadly, I work on topics including experimentation, gender, identity, intelligence, cybersecurity, the role of emotion in decision-making, and genetic contributions to political attitudes and behaviors. I currently serve as international relations editor for the American Journal of Political Science.


I work on a wide variety of different topics. Current projects include a large series of survey experiments examining attitudes toward gender inequality across multiple countries encompassing multiple topics.  I am also currently involved in a series of projects related to ethical considerations in implementing field experiments. I also work on topics including identity, intelligence, cybersecurity, genetic contributions to political attitudes and behaviors, and emotional aspects of decision-making.  


McDermott, Rose. (September 2, 2019).    Making America Less. Nature Human Behavior. 

McDermott, Rose (forthcoming). Emotional dynamics in cyberconflict. Journal of Cyber Policy

McDermott, R.   (2019). The role of gender in political violence.  Special issue on Political Ideologies in Current Opinion in the Behavioral Sciences.  Edited by John Jost, Eran Halperin & Kristin Lauren. 

McDermott, Rose (2019).  Political Science’s #metoo moment.   Journal of Women, Politics and Policy.  Special issue edited by Nadia Brown.

McDermott, Rose.  Leader’s Emotional Manipulation of Political Identity: An Evolutionary Perspective. (2019). Leadership Quarterly Special Issue on the Evolution and Biology of Leadership (Guest editors: Mark Van Vugt and Chris von Rueden). 

McDermott, Rose.  (2019). Psychological Underpinnings of Post-Truth in Political Beliefs. PS

McDermott, R. (K. Monroe, Ed.) (2018).  The Evils of Polygyny: The David Easton Lectures by Rose McDermott.  Ithaca: Cornell University Press.

McDermott, Rose (2018). The Nature of Narcissism. For H-Diplo. https://issforum.org/roundtables/policy/1-5BE-Narcissism

McDermott, Rose.(2018)  Coalitional Rivalry May Hurt in Trade, but Help in War: Commentary on Boyer & Petersen.  Behavior and Brain Sciences

McDermott, Rose & Hatemi, Peter K.(Guest editors). (2018). Evolutionary Psychology: special issue on Evolution and Politics

McDermott, Rose & Hatemi, Peter K.(2018). To go forward, we must look back: The importance of evolutionary psychology for understanding modern politics. Evolutionary Psychology special issue (Guest Editors: Rose McDermott and Peter K. Hatemi)

Bar-Joseph, Uri & McDermott, Rose (2017).  Intelligence Successes and Failure: The Human Factor.  New York: Oxford University Press.

McDermott, R, Lopez, A. & Hatemi, P.  (2017). Blunt Not the Heart, Enrage it: The Psychology of Revenge and Deterrence.  Texas National Security Review 1(1). 

Hatemi, Peter K., Charles Crabtree & McDermott, Rose (January 15, 2017)  Sexual Preferences and Political Ideology: Does Performance in the Bedroom  Predict Performance in the Ballot Box?” Personality and Individual Differences

Glowacki L, Isakov A, Wrangham R, McDermott, R., Fowler J & Christakis N. Key individuals and friendship networks facilitate high-risk collective action in inter-group violence (October 10, 2016).   Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.  

Dean, Benjamin & McDermott, Rose (2017). A research agenda to improve decision making in cyber security policy.  Penn State Journal of Law and International Affairs 5(1). 

McDermott, Rose & Hatemi, Peter K (May 31, 2016). The Relationship Between Physical Aggression, Foreign Policy and Moral Choices: Phenotypic and Genetic Findings. Aggressive Behavior


INTL 0600

PLCY 2070  Decision Making

POLS  0400 Introduction to International Relations

POLS 1821P Political Psychology in International Relations

POLS 1821M War in Film and Literature

POLS 1823G Woman and War

POLS 1550 War and Politics

POLS 1560 American Foreign Policy

PLCY 2735 Women and Nations

POLS 2000 Strategies of Inquiry and Research Design

News|Recent News

Why are humans so kind, yet so cruel? (comments by Rose McDermott)

March 7, 2019 Christian Science Monitor

Professor Rose McDermott comments on human nature's extremes of kindness and aggression, saying "Over long periods of time among large numbers of people, you end up with a more – slightly more – egalitarian system. We breed a kind of peacefulness, at least for the in-group."


Backing Up Women With Facts and Figures (Rose McDermott mentioned)

July 17, 2018 Pass Blue

The WomenStats Project links the status of women to the security and behavior of countries, offering insights into women's lives all over the world. The database helped uphold a ban on polygyny in Canada when Professor Rose McDermott submitted empirical research that used WomenStats numbers to the Supreme Court of British Columbia.


The Evils of Polygyny

June 13, 2018

In her new book, Professor Rose McDermott examines one structural factor that instigates, enforces, and replicates patterns of male dominance: the practice of polygyny.


Research Achievement Awards honor accomplished Brown scholars (Rose McDermott mentioned)

April 20, 2018 News from Brown

Among the winners of the annual award program is Professor Rose McDermott, who "earned a Distinguished Research Achievement Award for her pioneering scholarship, including in the area of political psychology, and her innovative interdisciplinary work across political science, international relations, psychology and behavioral genetics." 


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