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Jordan Gans-Morse

Associate Professor

Ph.D.: University of California, Berkeley, 2011
Curriculum Vitae


Research Interest(s): Property Rights; Rule of Law; Authoritarian Institutions; Informal Institutions; Predatory States; Corruption; Clientelism

Program Area(s): Law and Politics; Comparative Politics

Regional Specialization(s): Europe

Subfield Specialties: Law and Politics


Jordan Gans-Morse conducts research on corruption, the rule of law, property rights, and political and economic transitions. Although his primary regional expertise is the former Soviet Union, he also has conducted research on Central-Eastern Europe and Latin America. He is the author of Property Rights in Post-Soviet Russia: Violence, Corruption, and Demand for Law (Cambridge University Press). Other recent publications have appeared or are forthcoming in the American Journal of Political Science, the American Political Science ReviewComparative Political StudiesPost-Soviet AffairsProblems of Post-CommunismStudies in International Comparative Development, and World Development. He received his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in 2011.  Prior to his doctoral studies, he was a Junior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, DC, a recipient of two US State Department fellowships to Moscow, and a Resident Director for the American Councils for International Education's student exchange program in St. Petersburg, Russia.

He is currently working on a new book manuscript, tentatively titled To Steal or to Serve? Motivations for Public Service in Corrupt States. Drawing on evidence from Russia, Ukraine, and Georgia, the study examines the roots of systemic corruption and investigates strategies for curtailing the predatory states that plague citizens throughout much of the world. During the 2016-2017 academic year, Gans-Morse served as a Fulbright Scholar teaching and conducting research in Ukraine.

Select Publications

  • “Reducing Bureaucratic Corruption: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on What Works" (with Mariana Borges, Alexey Makarin, Theresa Mannah-Blankson, Andre Nickow, and Dong Zhang). World Development. Forthcoming.

  • “Demand for Law and the Security of Property Rights: The Case of Post-Soviet Russia.” American Political Science Review 111, 2 (2017): 338-359.
  • “Putin's Crackdown on Mortality: Rethinking Legal Nihilism and State Capacity in Light of Russia's Surprising Public Health Campaigns” (with Henry St. George Brooke). Problems of Post-Communism 63,1 (2016): 1-14.
  • “Varieties of Clientelism: Machine Politics During Elections” (with Sebastian Mazzuca and Simeon Nichter). American Journal of Political Science 58, 2 (2014): 415-432.
  • “Threats to Property Rights in Russia: From Private Coercion to State Aggression.”  Post-Soviet Affairs 28, 3 (2012): 263-295.
  • “Neoliberalism: From New Liberal Philosophy to Anti-Liberal Slogan” (with Taylor C. Boas). Studies in Comparative International Development 44, 2 (2009): 137-161.
  • “Economic Reforms and Democracy: Evidence of a J-Curve in Latin America” (with Simeon Nichter).  Comparative Political Studies 41, 10 (2008): 1398-1426.                               
  •  “Searching for Transitologists: Contemporary Theories of Post-Communist Transitions and the Myth of a Dominant Paradigm.” Post-Soviet Affairs20, 4 (2004): 320-349.

Courses taught

  • PS 310: Methods of Political Inference
  • PS 368: Political Economy of Development
  • PS 369: Politics of Post-Soviet Russia
  • PS 395: Politics of Corruption
  • PS 451: Political Economy of Development (Graduate Seminar)
  • PS 490: Informal Institutions (Graduate Seminar)
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