Assistant Professor of Business Administration
Vincent Pons is an assistant professor of business administration in the Business, Government, and International Economy Unit. He studies questions in political economy and development.
Professor Pons’s research examines factors that explain people’s failure to register and vote, and how institutions and political campaigns affect these factors. This work led him to write Porte à porte: Reconquérir la démocratie sur le terrain, about François Hollande’s field campaign for the French 2012 presidential elections. It has resulted in mentions and opinion pieces in media outlets including Le Monde, The Huffington Post, and Slate. In his development research, he concentrates on health systems and policies.
Professor Pons received his PhD in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also holds a master in economics from the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris (joint with the Paris School of Economics and ENSAE) and a master’s degree in political philosophy from Université Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne.
Porte à Porte
From January to May 2012, campaign activists supporting François Hollande knocked at five millions doors, making this door-to-door effort the largest in Europe to date. This project was formed by Guillaume Liégey, Arthur Muller, and Vincent Pons, who had met at the universities of Harvard and MIT and had observed the tools and campaign techniques used by the 2008 Obama campaign. The 2012 Hollande campaign that they piloted showed that the American method is effective, and it brings an enlightening perspective on the dysfunction of our democracy. How can rising abstention be curbed? Why do ethnic minorities vote less than other citizens? How important are obstacles to registration? This book combines political science and field experience to address these questions and to offer a glimpse of modern, state-of-the-art political mobilization.