By Paul C. Avey, Michael C. Desch, James D. Long, Daniel Maliniak, Susan Peterson, and Michael J. Tierney
Amid all the doom and gloom about declining U.S. power and respect abroad, Americans can take solace in the fact that their university system remains the envy of the world. But at a time when the United States faces a host of new challenges-from the Arab Spring to the global financial crisis-does anyone in power care what the academy thinks? A small circle of scholars makes their views known in op-eds and blog posts, or by taking sabbaticals inside the Beltway, but the views of most academics remain unheard in Washington. So what does the Ivory Tower think about the pressing issues of the day? Below are some highlights of the 2011 survey (see the full results here), as well as exclusive rankings of the best IR programs.