Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis


 The Bulen Symposium is a one-day event hosted biennially by the Department of Political Science that focuses on the state of the American political system and its two major parties. It brings together political practioners, journalists, and scholars, with topics and speakers chosen by a committee of representatives from the university and the community. Past symposium topics have included the following:

  • The impact of the high-tech revolution on politics in America.
  • Redistricting and the partisan competitiveness of elections.
  • The front-loading of presidential primaries.
  • The "virtues of partisanship".
  • The general health of political parties in the United States.

The symposium is named for L. Keith Bulen, a leading political figure from Indiana who served at the block, precinct, ward, county, district, state, national, and international levels. Prominent individuals from both parties joined in 1998 to honor both his life and contributions by establishing the Bulen Symposium in American Politics. The symposium is organized by the Department of Political Science in conjunction with the School of Public and Environmental Affairs.

The co-chairs of the symposium represent both major political parties, and public servants with experience in Indiana and at the national level. They are Joseph J. Andrew, Charles Black, Dr. and Mrs Lawrence Borst, Mitchell E. Daniels Jr., Sandra Donovan, Gordon Durnil, Rex Early, David Frick, Stephen Goldsmith, William H. Hudnut III, Andrew Jacobs Jr., US Senator Richard G. Lugar, Michael McDaniel, Mr and Mrs Owen Meharg, James T. Morris, Juhn Mutz, Dr. Dennis Nicholas, Lyn Nofziger, Gordon St. Angelo, John Sears, Dr. Beurt SerVaas, and John Sweezy.

For its first five years, from 1998 through 2002, the Bulen Symposium was an annual event. It has since shifted to a biennial event, to coincide with national elections. The next symposium will be held in November 2012. For more information, please contact Prof. Aaron Dusso.