DPDF Student Fellowship Competition > DPDF Student Fellowship Competition 2014

State Building and Governance in Retrospect and Prospect

Open only to doctoral students based at universities within the U.S.

Workshop dates:
Spring- June 4-8, 2014 in Berkeley, California
Fall- September 17-21, 2014 in Arlington, Virginia

Public officials do their jobs in different ways in different times and places. Some distribute resources and opportunities--including jobs, contracts, subsidies, and services--on the basis of broadly rational criteria like demonstrated need and ability. Others allocate assets and access on the basis of more particularistic criteria including partisan loyalties, political payoffs, family ties, and bribery. And many are unwilling or unable to do their jobs at all—with more or less predictable consequences for the well being of their constituents. In fact, the World Bank holds that "one in four people on the planet, more than 1.5 billion, live in fragile and conflict-affected states or in countries with high levels of criminal violence."

The field of state building and governance addresses the roots and manifestations of public authority in different agencies, countries, regions, and time periods. Specific questions to be addressed might include: What are the origins and underpinnings of institutions like professional (or merit-based) bureaucracies, independent judiciaries, autonomous central banks, and military deference to civilian authority? Are corruption and cronyism products of colonialism, culture, commodity booms, or more contingent historical circumstances? Are war-making and state-making really complementary historical processes, or might they at times prove orthogonal or antagonistic to each other? What is the relationship between regime type and public sector performance? And how--if at all--can the rule of law be established in fragile states where the law itself is, by definition, a feeble instrument?

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Field Directors

Andrew Schrank
Professor, University of New Mexico, Political Science and Sociology [ bio ]

Andrew Schrank is Professor of Political Science and Sociology at the University of New Mexico. His research areas include comparative political, economic, and historical sociology, and specifically the organization, regulation, and performance of business in Latin America. He has published numerous articles and book chapters on industrial policy, labor market regulation, entrepreneurship, and corruption, including several pieces on the conceptualization, measurement, and evaluation of "governance" in developing countries. He has also served as an editorial board member for the American Journal of Sociology, Politics and Society, and Latin American Politics and Society, and consulted for the Inter-American Development Bank, World Bank, and United Nations Development Programme. Schrank's work has been supported by the Ford Foundation, the National Science Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation, among others. He received his PhD in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Marcus Kurtz
Professor, Ohio State University, Political Science [ bio ]
Marcus Kurtz is Professor of Political Science at Ohio State University. His teaching expertise includes comparative and international political economy, Latin American politics, democratization and economic reform, and state building. His books include Latin American State Building in Comparative Perspective: Social Foundations of Institutional Order (Cambridge 2013) and Free Market Democracy and the Chilean and Mexican Countryside (Cambridge 2004). He has published articles in International Organization, Comparative Political Studies, American Journal of Political Science, and World Politics and also serves on the editorial board of Politics and Society and Latin American Politics and Society. Kurtz received his PhD in Political Science from the University California, Berkeley.


List of recipients for this competition is not yet available.