I am Professor of Political Science and the Total Chair in Contemporary Africa at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where I conduct research and teach in the field of comparative politics.
My research is concerned with understanding the causes and consequences of ethnic conflict, and the determinants of good governance and policy-making in low- and middle-income countries. I also write and teach on political methodology, including concept analysis and measurement, and strategies for multi-method causal inference. My research projects have included studies of the politics of state-building, taxation, policy responses to HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and tobacco control, policy preference formation, ethnic violence, multi-level/polycentric governance, and the relationship between information and public accountability. Regionally, I have tended to focus on the politics of Southern Africa, especially South Africa, but I routinely employ comparative analyses with developing countries in other parts of Africa, Latin America and Asia.
I serve on the board of directors of the Southern African Legal Services Foundation; and the international advisory board of the African School of Economics. I recently joined the EGAP (experiments in governance and politics) network.