Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein

Santa Monica College's interdisciplinary Public Policy Institute provides nonpartisan community programs exploring key economic, social, and political issues.

The Institute offers FREE, informative discussions on the policy issues that affect our daily lives.

Founded by LA County Supervisor and former California State Senator Sheila Kuehl and SMC political science professor Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein (former Chair of Excellence, Philosophy & Social Science), the Institute is currently led by co-directors Tahvildaran-Jesswein and SMC political science adjunct Shari Davis (who also chairs Community for Excellent Public Schools).

Several programs and topical discussions are planned for spring 2019, including panels and community discussions. Please visit for up-to-date details. Send an email to with a request to be added to mailing list for invitations to events.

8th Annual Spring Symposium May 6-9, 2019

There Goes the Neighborhood (Part 2)

The SMC Public Policy Institute's 2019 Spring Symposium will focus on the complex issues surrounding affordable housing, gentrification, and displacement, continuing the theme initiated in fall 2018, "There Goes the Neighborhood." Speakers and other details were not yet confirmed at press time. Please visit the Public Policy Institute website at for the latest information.