• "I didn’t know when I left [Harvard] that the way I would make myself useful was in local government. But I now have the job of a lifetime."

    - Pete Buttigieg, Mayor of South Bend, IN

  • “Why is it so important to have young people involved in politics and public policy? It’s because we are the largest generation in today’s workforce, it’s because we will be the plurality of voters in this upcoming presidential election... We need to ensure that millennials’ voices are part of the conversation.”

    - Elise Stefanik, U.S. Congresswoman (R-NY)
  • “Coming to the IOP every day and talking with my peers, you can tell people want to make a change. They don’t want the future of politics to look like it does now, they want it to be more effective, they want to help people, they want to help their communities.”

    - Niyat Mulugheta, Harvard 2016
  • "More than 10 years after my first foray into the IOP, I remain as inspired by politics and service as I was as a freshman. The IOP's ability to shift generations of young people towards politics represents the Institute's power and potential.”

    - Jay Lundy, Harvard 2009


At the Harvard Kennedy School’s IOP, we are creating the future of politics- a future that is innovative, inclusive, diverse and bipartisan. Our mission is to create the future of politics and public service every day, inspiring undergraduates to lead lives of purpose by committing themselves to the practice of politics and governing, and to public service and the countless opportunities to serve at home and around the world.

From why young people are pursuing public service in larger numbers than ever before to the secrets of President Obama’s speechwriter, Get Inspired is here to capture the newest ideas from the frontlines of politics.

The Institute of Politics gleans fresh ideas from the fronlines during Campaign for President: The Managers Look conference every four years since 1972, which aims to capture a “first draft of history” about presidential campaigns from their managers, senior strategists and media and political observers.

In the aftermath of 2016’s tumultuous and ground-breaking election cycle, insiders’ views came into focus on November 30 and December 1, 2016 as the key players from the Democratic and Republican campaigns convened in Cambridge for Campaign for President: The Managers Look at 2016, organized in collaboration with the Shorenstein Center on the Media, Politics and Public Policy.  

Through a series of panels and round table discussions, participants explain and sometimes defend campaign strategies and tactics from the earliest primaries through Election Day. The proceedings, which provide a unique historical record of key decisions, are recorded digitally and also reproduced in a publication that have been used as a primary source material for Presidential biographies from Nixon to Obama.

Click on the links below to listen to audio from each 2016 session:
Roundtable Discussion: The General Election
Opening Roundtable Session
Panel Discussion: The Media and Election 2016
Democratic Primaries and Convention
Republican Primaries and Convention
Interview with David Fahrenthold
Interview with Nate Silver