Jeffrey Friedman is a political scientist and the editor of Critical Review: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Politics and Society.
Friedman graduated from Brown University in 1983 with a double major in History and Philosophy, and received an MA in History at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1985 and a Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale in 2002. He taught in the Government department at Dartmouth College in 1998, the Social Studies program at Harvard from 1998 to 2000, and the Political Science department at Barnard College, Columbia University from 2001 to 2006.
In 2006 he resigned from the Barnard faculty to edit Critical Review, which he had founded in 1986. The initial purpose of the journal was to bring critical scrutiny to bear on libertarian scholarship, and to subject mainstream scholarship to similar scrutiny. As part of this effort, Friedman published an article, "What's Wrong with Libertarianism," that prompted wide discussion among libertarian writers. Since then, the journal has evolved into a scholarly forum for critically assessing the realities of democracy and capitalism, emphasizing the actual functioning of democracy in the light of political scientists' findings of "public ignorance" of political affairs, and related questions such as electoral "mandates," media bias, academic bias, and the autonomy of state officials from public scrutiny. Friedman's articles "Public Opinion and Democratic Theory" (1998), "Public Opinion: Bringing the Media Back In" (2003), and "Popper, Weber, and Hayek: The Epistemology and Politics of Ignorance" (2005) addressed these issues.
Friedman is a visiting scholar in the Government Department of the University of Texas at Austin, and the Max Weber Fellow of the Institute for the Advancement of the Social Sciences at Boston University.