David Collier

550 Barrows Hall
510 642-8168
David Collier's picture


Research Interests: 
Democracy and Authoritarianism
Latin America
Concept Analysis
Qualitative Methods
Multi-Method Research
Comparative Politics
B.A., Harvard University
M.A. and Ph.D., University of Chicago
Personal Statement: 

David Collier's work focuses on comparative politics, Latin America, and qualitative/multi-method research. 

link to CV: 


      1. Recent Awards 

         Johan Skytte Prize in Political Science, 2014 

         Frank J. Goodnow Award for Distinguished Service to Political Science and the American Political Science Association, 2014

         Powell Award for Graduate Student Mentoring, APSA Comparative Politics Section, 2013  

    2. Online Chapters for Rethinking Social Inquiry, 2d edn. 

    3. Recent Publications

           a. Set-Theoretic Comparative Methods

Symposium on "The Set-Theoretic Comparative Method (STCM): Critical Assessment and the Search for Alternatives." David Collier, Ed. Qualitative & Multi-Method Research, 12, 1 (Spring 2014): 2-51.

"QCA Should Set Aside the Algorithms." Sociological Methodology 44. (2014): 122-126.

b.  Measurement Validity

"Rival Strategies of Validation: Tools for Evaluating Measures of Democracy." Comparative Political Studies 47. (2014): 111-138

Online Appendix for "Rival Strategies..." Comparing the Data Sets

c. Typologies

"Putting Typologies to Work: Concept-Formation, Measurement, and Analytic Rigor" (with LaPorte and Seawright) Political Research Quarterly 65, No. 1 (March 2012): 217-32. 

d. Process Tracing

"Understanding Process Tracing." PS: Political Science and Politics 44, No. 4 (Oct 2011): 823-30."

"Teaching Process Tracing: Examples and Exercises." Online Supplement to David Collier, "Understanding Process Tracing" PS: Political Science and Politics 44, No. 4 (Oct. 2011): 823-30.

    4. Amazon Author Page

          a. Amazon Author Page

   5. CAREER

David Collier's research focuses on political methodology, including concept analysis, qualitative methods, and strategies of multi-method investigation. His current work is concerned with the challenges of integrating case-study and medium-N analysis.

Throughout his career, Collier has also studied democracy and authoritarianism, regime transitions, labor politics, party system dynamics, and class coalitions -- focusing primarily on Latin America. The major book he coauthored with Ruth Berins Collier, Shaping the Political Arena (1991, 2002), was one of the first extended, historical analyses of critical junctures and path dependence to be published in political science. Corresponding to these substantive interests, Collier's work on concept analysis includes numerous examples from the literature on democracy, authoritarianism, and regime change.

At Berkeley, Collier has been Chair of the Political Science Department and of the Center for Latin American Studies, and he was founding Co-Director of the Berkeley-Stanford Program in Latin American Studies. He has served as President of the Comparative Politics Section of the American Political Science Association, has been a Vice President of APSA, and was the Founding President of the APSA Organized Section for Qualitative and Multi-Method Research. He has played an active role in building the Institute for Qualitative and Multi-Method Research, an international training program held annually at Syracuse University. Collier is centrally involved in training scholars in the fields of Latin American politics, comparative politics, and methodology. He won Berkeley’s campus-wide Distinguished Faculty Mentor Award, as well as the Powell Graduate Student Mentoring Award of the APSA Comparative Politics Section.

Collier has been a Guggenheim Fellow and a Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences. He is an elected Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was awarded the 2014 Johan Skytte Prize in Political Science.

  1. Articles and Symposia

Letters from the President, Newsletter of the APSA Organized Section for Comparative Politics