A Bowdoin professor was honored with the E.E. Schattschneider Award for the best doctoral dissertation in the field of American Government at its annual meeting on August 30.

Michael Franz, assistant professor of government, was given the distinction for his dissertation, "Choices and Changes: Interest Groups in the Electoral Process."

The work analyzes American politics in the last 30 years and contends that interest groups have played an increasingly vital role in the outcome of elections. It will be published next March as a book.

Franz, who joined the faculty in 2006, was the only winner from a liberal arts college.

He earned his Ph.D. in American Politics from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. Since coming to Bowdoin, Franz has taught a variety of courses, including, "Mass Media and American Politics" and "Campaigns and Elections."

Franz says he is now studying campaign advertising?particularly TV ads?and how they influence viewers to vote for a particular candidate.