Former South Bend mayor and presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg joins Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study

Author: Notre Dame News

Pete Buttigieg, former South Bend mayor and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, has been named a 2020-2021 faculty fellow at the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study (NDIAS).

The NDIAS is a University-wide research institute that convenes an interdisciplinary group of faculty, graduate and undergraduate fellows each year to study questions that require a joint focus, benefit from sustained research and advance understanding of pressing issues that affect our ability to lead valuable, meaningful lives.

Buttigieg will work on two research projects at the NDIAS: one that explores how to restore trust in political institutions and another that considers the forces distinctively shaping the 2020s. He joins a group of more than 30 faculty and student fellows who will be conducting research on the nature of trust, the institute’s 2020-2021 research theme.

As an NDIAS faculty fellow, Buttigieg will join the NDIAS fellows and students in weekly work-in-progress seminars and other academic programming. He will also engage the broader campus community by teaching an interdisciplinary undergraduate course on the importance of trust as understood through different fields. The seminar draws on literature, politics, economics and philosophy and students will have the opportunity to engage with other guest experts. The class is offered through the Department of English, and applications from interested students are due July 23.

“I’m thrilled to welcome Pete to the institute and Notre Dame in the coming year. More than ever, we need scholars and public leaders working together, generating the insights that will make democratic institutions stronger and advance the common good in creative and evidence-based ways,” said Meghan Sullivan, director of the NDIAS and the John A. O’Brien Professor of Philosophy. “We are eager to support Pete as he pursues his ambitious research projects. He is a perfect fit for our world-class Nature of Trust cohort. We’re expecting some really exciting ideas from this group.”

A Harvard graduate and Rhodes Scholar, Buttigieg mounted a 2020 Democratic presidential campaign that captured national attention and won the Iowa caucus. Prior to the campaign, he served in the U.S. Navy Reserve and was deployed to Afghanistan.

Buttigieg has strong ties to the South Bend and Notre Dame communities. Born in South Bend and a student at St. Joseph High School, he served as the city’s mayor for two terms, from 2012-2020. His parents, Joseph Buttigieg and Jennifer Anne Montgomery, were both long-serving members of the Notre Dame faculty.

“I am delighted to join this academic community to pursue research on one of the most salient issues of our time — the nature of trust. I look forward to engaging with faculty and students from various disciplines at a time in the life of our country that calls for deep and wide-ranging inquiry,” Buttigieg said.

Buttigieg is the latest major political figure to serve as a fellow or visiting lecturer at Notre Dame. Former U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, former White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough and former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Paul Ryan were on the Notre Dame faculty during the 2019-2020 academic year.

To learn more about the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study, visit

Originally published by Notre Dame News at on June 25, 2020.