About

Biography

I am a political scientist and legal scholar. Currently, I am a doctoral student at Vanderbilt University and a graduate affiliate of the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions.

My research interests include bureaucratic politics, administrative law, and immigration law. My scholarship has appeared in a number of law reviews and specialty journals, including George Washington Law ReviewMinnesota Law Review, Vanderblit Law Review: En Banc, and Yale Journal on Regulation: Notice & Comment.

My research focuses on bureaucratic politics and agency behavior. Specifically, I study how the president, courts, and Congress use their powers to curb bureaucratic discretion. Much of my scholarship examines judicial deference to agency interpretations of law, such as Chevron‘s constraining effect on political ideology and efforts to curtail the Chevron doctrine. My current projects explore bureaucratic capacity and agency resilience to policy-making disruption during presidential transitions.

Prior to enrolling at Vanderbilt University, I earned my juris doctorate from the University of Minnesota Law School in 2016. During law school, I represented asylees before the Executive Office of Immigration Review (“EOIR”) and Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”). My earliest scholarship examines the definition of “particular social group”, DACA, and issues specific to women and children asylees. Following law school, I clerked for Judge Tracy Smith of the Minnesota Court of Appeals (2016-2017) and Chief Judge John R. Tunheim (2017-2018) of the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota.

Before law school, I earned my BA in Political Science and History from the University of Minnesota in 2012. I also earned a Certificate in Irish Politics from University College Cork.

When I am not cleaning data or running regressions, I spend my free time cycling, hiking, and camping. My all-time favorite trails are located on the Superior Hiking Trail. I collect board games, and I am always happy to make a recommendation. I also maintain a 40-gallon reef aquarium. I have two clownfish named Ruth and Marty, a yellow watchman goby named Smith, a pistol shrimp named Wesson, and a royal gramma basslet named PCAOB (pronounced: peek-a-boo).

Contact

E-Mail: nicholas.r.bednar@vanderbilt.edu
Twitter: @NicholasBednar