Progamme Fellows of 2022
Alesha Porisky, Northern Illinois University
Alesha Porisky is an Assistant Professor at Northern Illinois University in the Department of Political Science. She holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Toronto and a BA in Economics and Political Science from the University of British Columbia. Her work examines the intersections between social policies, cash transfers, state-society relations, citizenship, gender, and the ethics of fieldwork. She has conducted extensive fieldwork in East Africa on the impacts of cash transfers on state-society relations and published in Annual Review of Political Science, Regional and Federal Studies and other outlets. Alesha has worked as a Researcher with the Effective States and Inclusive Development Research Centre at the University of Manchester and is currently a collaborator on a SSHRC-funded project examining the links between electrification and political participation in Kenya.
Read the GLD interview with Alesha here!
Alexandra Domike Blackman, Cornell University
Alexandra Domike Blackman is an Assistant Professor in Cornell University’s Department of Government. In 2019-2020, she was a Post-Doctoral Associate at New York University - Abu Dhabi. Blackman’s work focuses on the development of and appeal to religious identities in the political sphere, the challenges facing female politicians, and political party development in the Middle East. Her work has appeared in Political Behavior, Politics & Religion, and Middle East Law and Governance. Blackman was a Center for Arabic Study Abroad Fellow in Cairo, Egypt (2010-2011) and a Junior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, DC (2011-2012).
Read the GLD interview with Alexandra here!
Dr. Andy Harris is an assistant professor of political science at New York University Abu Dhabi. He received his PhD in Government from Harvard University in 2012. Prior to joining NYUAD, Dr. Harris was appointed a prestigious Postdoctoral Prize Research Fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford. His research focuses on African political economy with a focus on governance, bureaucracies, and research methodology, and employs structured and unstructured "big data" sources, satellite imagery, administrative records, and interview and archival sources in his research. Dr. Harris has published work in the American Political Science Review, The Journal of Politics, Comparative Political Studies, Electoral Studies, and Political Analysis. He regularly collaborates with governmental organizations like the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission of Kenya and the Kenya Law Reform Commission and international non-governmental organizations like the National Democratic Institute in the course of his research."
Read the GLD interview with Andy here!
Catlan Reardon is a Ph.D. Candidate in Political Science at UC Berkeley and a Research Associate at the Center on the Politics of Development. Her research interests include ethnic and political violence, leader political behavior, climate politics, and local development and governance in the developing world. In her dissertation and first book project, Catlan investigates how local leaders shape ethnic and political violence in sub-Saharan Africa by examining their key roles as arbiters of local disputes. Prior to graduate school, Catlan worked for Innovations for Poverty Action in Uganda and Kenya managing studies on micro-savings, health and governance, and technology diffusion. She also was a Research Manager at the Institution for Social and Policy Studies at Yale University. Catlan holds an M.A. in Political Science from Leiden University and a B.A. in Political Science from Wake Forest University.
Read the GLD interview with Catlan here!
Christopher Gore, Ryerson University
Christopher Gore is a Professor at the Department of Politics and Public Administration, Ryerson University. He holds a PhD and MA in Political Science and Environmental Studies from the University of Toronto, and a BSc in natural resource management from the University of Guelph. Chris' work focuses on the governance and administration of urban and environmental issues in Africa and Canada. In recent years his work has focused mainly on the politics and multilevel governance of cities, infrastructure, climate change, climate adaptation, energy provision, and agriculture and food security in East Africa. Chris' research has appeared in journals such as World Development; African Affairs; Review of Policy Research; Environment and Planning C: Government & Policy; Journal of International Development; and Journal of Urban Affairs. In 2018 he published the book, Electricity in Africa: The Politics of Transformation in Uganda.
Read the GLD interview with Chris here!
Eitan Paul, University of Michigan
Eitan Paul is a joint Ph.D. candidate in Public Policy and Political Science at the University of Michigan (expected to graduate in May 2022). He is also an International Policy Center research scholar at the Ford School of Public Policy, a non-resident research fellow at the Ateneo School of Government in the Philippines, and a visiting research fellow at the Research Center for Politics and Government at Universitas Gadjah Mada in Indonesia. Eitan studies the effects of civil society and social accountability initiatives on the quality of democratic representation and the distribution of public goods in Southeast Asia. His research has been supported by the J-PAL Governance Initiative, EGAP Metaketa Initiative, Southeast Asia Research Group (SEAREG), and Weiser Center for Emerging Democracies (University of Michigan). Eitan previously worked on electoral reform projects for The Asia Foundation in Timor-Leste and the National Democratic Institute in Cambodia. He received an M.A. in Law and Diplomacy at the Fletcher School at Tufts University and a B.S. in Foreign Service (International Politics) at Georgetown University.
Read the GLD interview with Eitan here!
Hans Lueders, Stanford University
Hans Lueders is currently a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law at Stanford. His research seeks to understand the causes and consequences of political inequality. He is currently working on a book project linking political inequality in advanced democratic societies to domestic migration. The book argues that domestic migration has important yet under-researched consequences for democratic governance and stability because migrants differ in important political ways from non-migrants.
In his other work, Hans asks how citizens can influence politics in closed authoritarian regimes. Drawing on in-depth archival research on the former German Democratic Republic, Hans identifies little-acknowledged ways through which citizens can still influence politics despite extreme political inequality. Moreover, in his research on unauthorized immigrants in the United States, Hans studies inequality from the perspective of a marginalized community. This work seeks to understand how unauthorized immigrants navigate life while being politically disenfranchised.
Hans’ research has been published or is forthcoming at The American Political Science Review, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the Journal of Politics, the European Political Science Review, Democratization, and the Journal of Economics, Race, and Policy, among others.
Read the GLD interview with Hans here!
Ian Madison, London School of Economics
Ian Madison is an LSE Fellow and Co-Director of the International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies programme at the London School of Economics (LSE), where he teaches modules on humanitarianism and forced migration. His research focuses on the politics of non-state actors, resilience, and public service delivery during periods of conflict or natural disaster. Ian holds a PhD in International Development from the University of Oxford and an MSc in International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies from the LSE.
Ian’s research agenda seeks to understand how people adapt and respond to political and environmental crises in fragile states. Drawing on fieldwork in Kosovo, his PhD examines how people navigate between competing ‘parallel state’ authorities during conflict, with a focus on three public services closely tied to statebuilding: education, healthcare, and justice. In a follow-up project in Tanzania, he examines how people living in informal settlements have adapted community-based financial institutions to better cope with increased flooding. Beyond academia, Ian has worked on issues related to resilience, natural resources, and community engagement for the World Bank, NGOs, government, and environmental consultancies.
Read the GLD interview with Ian here!
Matthias Krönke, University of Cape Town
Matthias is a PhD student in the Department of Political Studies at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and a graduate researcher at the Institute of Democracy, Citizenship and Public Policy in Africa (IDCPPA) / Afrobarometer. He studies Comparative Politics and Political Behaviour with a regional emphasis on Sub-Saharan Africa. His research focuses on two related themes (1) the internal organisation of political institutions, and (2) the consequences of these organisations for democracy and development in Africa. He is particularly interested in how political parties respond to current challenges of connecting citizens to their governments. To address these issues, he uses a multi-method approach, combining qualitative fieldwork with statistical analysis and surveys.
His dissertation project, “Conveyor Belts of Information: The Role of Political Parties in Basic Service Delivery in Africa” investigates the importance of political parties for citizen satisfaction with the delivery of essential services for human development – in particular education, healthcare, electricity, water and sanitation. This research has been supported by the IDCPPA and the GLD. A second stream of research assesses judicial power in Africa and implications for citizens’ perception of the courts on the one hand, and the quality of elections on the other. Parts of this research have been supported by the Democratic Governance and Rights Unit at UCT.
Read the GLD interview with Matthias here!
Marie Gagné, Concordia University
Marie Gagné currently works on a three-month consultancy project with Tetra Tech ARD. In this project, she conducts a political economy analysis to understand why a USAID-funded forest conservation project has not worked as planned in Sierra Leone, Guinea, Liberia and Côte d'Ivoire. Prior to that, Marie was enrolled in a Postdoctoral Fellowship funded by the Fonds de recherche du Québec-Société et culture (FRQSC) in the Department of Political Science at Concordia University.
She earned a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Toronto, with a specialization in development studies. Her research interests include questions of land access, agricultural development, natural resource management, and food security. More broadly, her work seeks to understand how global economic and political pressures are mediated and experienced in often unexpected ways in rural Africa. She has published several policy reports, book chapters, and peer-reviewed articles in journals such as the Canadian Journal of African Studies. She recently co-guest-edited a Forum on land deals in limbo in Africa in the African Studies Review. Her current research project examines the significance of opposition to large-scale land deals for electoral democracy and citizenship in Senegal. Keen to mobilize the potential of social sciences outside academia, Marie has accumulated extensive professional experience as an independent expert researching rural development policies. Since September 2021, she has been a Country Research and Engagement Consultant at the Land Portal, a leading organization that generates and disseminates land governance information. Marie also serves as an executive board member of the Canadian Association for the Study of International Development (CASID).
Read the GLD interview with Marie here!
Sombo Muzata, Virginia Commonwealth University
Sombo Muzata has a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Sombo is also a trained accountant, Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), and she holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a specialization in Strategy. Sombo's research is in public financial management. During her fellowship year, she will investigate community members' perceptions of the Zambian government's response to public financial mismanagement. This bottom-up approach will highlight the awareness of public financial management, the power dynamics in remedying public financial mismanagement and develop a framework for integrating citizens' voices in public policy. Sombo previously worked as the Zambian country director for Diakonia, a Sweden-headquartered international nonprofit. Sombo was responsible for strategic planning, fundraising, and program implementation as the country director. She hopes to use some of the skills she acquired in implementing projects at the community level and the skills acquired in her Ph.D. studies in her research. Sombo currently works at Virginia Commonwealth University in the Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering on the countering proliferation finance initiative.
Read the GLD interview with Sombo here!
Tugba Bozcaga is an Assistant Professor in Politics and Political Methodology at King's College London, a Fellow at Harvard University's Middle East Initiative, and a Faculty Fellow at the Association for Analytic Learning about Islam and Muslim Societies (AALIMS). Previously she was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Middle East Initiative at Harvard University’s Kennedy School. She completed her PhD in 2020 at MIT. Her research interests lie in comparative political economy and political economy of development, with a substantive focus on service provision, bureaucracy, state capacity, distributive politics, and migration and a regional focus on the MENA region. Her work has been awarded Mancur Olson Best Dissertation Prize (Honorable Mention) from APSA Political Economy Section, Weber Best Conference Paper Award from APSA Religion and Politics Section, Best Comparative Policy Paper Award from APSA Public Policy Section, and Best Paper Awards from APSA MENA Politics Section. Her research has been supported by the Harvard Data Science Initiative, Program on Governance and Local Development and MIT Center for International Studies.