- Comparative Politics
Professor Wantchekon uses his background in Economics to analytically address social science questions related to his numerous academic interests. He is broadly focused on Political and Economic development, particularly in Africa and his specific interests include topics such democratization, clientelism and redistributive politics, resource curse, and long-term social impact of historical events. He is the author of numerous publications in leading academic journals, including “The Slave Trade and the Origins of Mistrust in Africa” (with Nathan Nunn), forthcoming in the American Economic Review; “The Paradox of “Warlord” Democracy: A Theoretical Investigation,” in the American Political Science Review (2004); Clientelism and Voting Behavior: A Field Experiment in Benin, World Politics (2003) as well as “Electoral Competition under the Threat of Political Unrest” (with Matthew Ellman) in the Quarterly Journal of Economics (2000).
In addition to his research and his published works, Professor Wantchekon also works on several projects and stands on a number of committees. He served a Secretary of the American Political Science Association (2008-2009) and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Afrobarometer Network, as well as the Ibrahim Index Technical Committee of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, which supports good governance and great leadership in Africa. Professor Wantchekon is also the founder of the Institute for Empirical Research in Political Economy based in Cotonou, Benin ( www.ireep.org ) ; and the Africa School of Economics (ASE http://africanschoolofeconomics.com/) in the city of Abomey Calavi, Benin, set to open in 2014.
Ph.D., Economics, Northwestern University, 1995; M.A. Economics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, 1992