The next WCCO Radio’s Business by Carlson: A Quarterly Report is taking place Wednesday, October 12, from 10 a.m. to noon in the Carlson School Atrium. The topic will be “The Business of Politics: How Innovations in Campaign Financing, Operations, and Strategy Are Changing Our Elections and Our Democracy.”

At the event, WCCO’s Dave Lee and Associate Professor Paul Vaaler (pictured) will break down the issues around innovations in campaign funding and operations with a panel of experts from the industry and the University of Minnesota, including Lawrence Jacobs from the Humphrey School and Darin Broton of the strategic communication company Tunheim. More information about the event, including how to register, can be found on the WCCO website.

Vaaler is the John and Bruce Mooty Chair in Law & Business, a joint appointment of the University of Minnesota’s Law School and Carlson School of Management. He teaches and writes on topics at the intersection of law and business with a special interest in how both affect economic growth and poverty alleviation in the developing world. An award-winning teacher, he also consults with firms, government agencies, and international organizations, including the World Bank where he has helped develop programs to increase venture investment by migrant diaspora groups in less-developed countries of Sub-Saharan Africa. He comments on current business issues each Wednesday morning with Lee on WCCO Radio.

Jacobs is the Walter F. and Joan Mondale Chair for Political Studies and director of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance in the Humphrey School and the Department of Political Science at the University of Minnesota. He has published 15 books and edited volumes and dozens of articles on elections, legislative and presidential politics, elections and public opinion, and a range of public policies. His book, Politicians Don't Pander, received the Goldsmith Book Prize from Harvard University's Shorenstein Center for Press and Politics, the Neustadt Book Prize from the American Political Science Association, and the Distinguished Book Prize in political sociology from the American Sociological Association. 

Broton is a veteran of public affairs and political campaigns and leads Tunheim's public affairs practice and specializes in issues management, strategic alliances, advocacy campaigns, and strategic communication. Coming from the world of campaigns and politics, he has a unique understanding of how targeted and provocative communications can influence public policy. Some of his current and past clients include Nestlé Waters North America, the National Center for Victims of Crime, T. Boone Pickens, the Minnesota Hospital Association, and Anheuser Busch.