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Publius: The Journal of Federalism is the world’s leading journal devoted to federalism. It is required reading for scholars of many disciplines who want the latest developments, trends, and empirical and theoretical work on federalism and intergovernmental relations.

History of Publius: The Journal of Federalism

The Center for the Study of Federalism’s flagship publication is Publius: The Journal of Federalism–the world’s leading international journal devoted to federalism. Publius was the pen name used by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison in 1787-1788 when they wrote The Federalist – a series of commentaries in defense of the federal republic created by the proposed Federal Constitution of 1787. It is an appropriate name for a journal devoted to the development and diffusion of knowledge about federalism and intergovernmental relations.
Publius: The Journal of Federalism was founded in 1971 by Daniel J. Elazar at Temple University with the assistance of Earl M. Baker also of Temple University. It began quarterly publishing in 1974. Baker served as associate editor of the journal until 1977 when Benjamin R. Schuster became managing editor until 1981.
John Kincaid of North Texas State University became associate editor in 1981, later serving as co-editor and editor. He revived the journal’s finances and subscriptions and remained responsible for both the content and management of Publius: The Journal of Federalism as a self-published journal for 25 years. Before retiring from the editorship, he negotiated an agreement with Oxford University Press to publish the journal. The journal’s offices were housed at NTSU’s Department of Political Science from 1981 to 1994 and then at the Robert B. and Helen S. Meyner Center for the Study of State and Local Government at Lafayette College until 2006.
Carol S. Weissert of Florida State University served as editor of the journal from 2006 to mid-2015. John Dinan of Wake Forest University edited the journal from 2015 to 2024. Paul Nolette and Philip Rocco assumed the Publius editorship in 2024.
Each year, Publius issues an annual review of American federalism that highlights and analyzes federalism and intergovernmental issues in the preceding year. The journal publishes other special issues dedicated to subjects of theoretical and practical significance, as well as open issues containing articles on many different topics. On numerous occasions, Publius articles were first tested as working papers among colleagues at conferences and other events sponsored by the Center or one of its partner organizations or in response to a call for papers issued by the CFS Notebook/Federalism Report.
Publius is sponsored by the Section on Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations of the American Political Science Association. Publius is published on behalf of CSF Associates: Publius, Inc. housed at the Robert B. and Helen S. Meyner Center for the Study of State and Local Government at Lafayette College, Easton, PA. For more information on Publius, visit and search the archives for free tables of contents at


CSF Associates: Publius is a nonpartisan foundation dedicated to supporting the work of the Center for the Study of Federalism, including its flagship publication, Publius: The Journal of Federalism. CSF Associates: Publius was incorporated in 1979 at the initiative of Daniel J. Elazar as a domestic non-profit corporation under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. It was granted 501(c)(3) status by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service in 1980. The chief purpose of the corporation is to help support the work of the Center for the Study of Federalism so as to advance research, conduct conferences and seminars, and issue publications related to federalism and federal principles.