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Political economy, ethnic politics, and comparative clientelism in developing countries; research design, causal inference, statistical methods, multi-method research
Thad Dunning is Robson Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Berkeley and directs the Center on the Politics of Development. He teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on comparative politics, political economy, and methodology. His substantive research in Latin America, Africa, and India has focused on ethnic voting, the consequences of political representation for minority groups, the role of intermediaries in distributing benefits in clientelist systems, and the consequences of natural resource wealth for democracy. His methodological writings focus on causal inference, statistical analysis, natural experiments, and the integration of quantitative and qualitative methods. Dunning is the author of several award-winning books, including Crude Democracy: Natural Resource Wealth and Political Regimes (2008, Cambridge University Press), which received the Best Book Award from the APSA 's Comparative Democratization Section); Natural Experiments in the Social Sciences: A Design-Based Approach (2012, Cambridge University Press), which won the Best Book Award of the ASPA's Experimental Research Section; and Brokers, Voters, and Clientelism: The Puzzle of Distributive Politics (2013, Cambridge University Press, co-authored with Susan Stokes, Marcelo Nazareno, and Valeria Brusco), which was awarded the Luebbert Prize from the APSA's Comparative Politics section and the Best Book Award from the APSA 's Comparative Democratization Section. His articles have also appeared in the American Political Science Review, Comparative Political Studies, International Organization, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Political Analysis, Studies in Comparative International Development, and other journals. Dunning received a Ph.D. degree in political science and an M.A. degree in economics from the University of California, Berkeley (2006). Before returning to Berkeley, he was Professor of Political Science at Yale University.
Brokers, Voters, and Clientelism: The Puzzle of Distributive Politics (2013, Cambridge University Press, with Susan Stokes, Marcelo Nazareno, and Valeria Brusco).
Natural Experiments in the Social Sciences: A Design-Based Approach (2012, Cambridge University Press)
Crude Democracy: Natural Resource Wealth and Political Regimes (2008, Cambridge University Press)
"Ethnic Quotas and Political Mobilization: Caste, Parties, and Distribution in Indian Village Councils." 2013. American Political Science Review 107 (1): 35-56 (with Janhavi Nilekani).
"Cross-Cutting Cleavages and Ethnic Voting: An Experimental Study of Cousinage in Mali." 2010. American Political Science Review 104 (1): 21-39.
"Model Specification in Instrumental-Variables Regression." Political Analysis 16 (3): 290-302.
"Improving Causal Inference: Strengths and Limitations of Natural Experiments." Political Research Quarterly 61 (2): 282-93.