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Politics of Development

About this Cambridge Elements series

This new series will provide important contributions on both established and new topics on the politics and political economy of developing countries. A particular priority is to give increased visibility to a dynamic and growing body of social science research that examines the political and social determinants of economic development, as well as the effects of different development models on political and social outcomes. 

The series will publish several different types of works, including 1) extended reference and review essays on the state of the art in enduring research traditions; 2) essays that set a new research agenda on emerging fields and point to future directions in empirics and theory; and 3) original empirically grounded and theoretically engaged research. Topics will cover a broad range of issues and areas including Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa, South and Southeast Asia, and post-communist countries (including the middle income countries of Eastern Europe, Russia, and China).

The series is open to all methodologies. Bringing together diverse research strands and critically engaging broad cross-regional policy and disciplinary debates, the series will be a valuable resource for scholars, students, and practitioners.

Areas of interest

Ideas and development; political regimes and regime change; developmental states and industrial policy; property rights and taxation; identity politics; historical roots of contemporary development and underdevelopment; corruption and governance; gender; resource wealth and development; political violence and development; local institutions and subnational development; politics and capital mobility; inequality; welfare regimes and social service delivery; informality; poverty and poverty alleviation policies; social capital; war and illicit trade networks; state-owned enterprises; crime and insecurity; representation and accountability.

This is a preliminary and evolving list, and we welcome inquiries on other topics related to the politics of development.

About the editor - Melani Cammett

Melani Cammett is Clarence Dillon Professor of International Affairs in the Department of Government at Harvard University and Professor (secondary faculty appointment) in the Department of Global Health and Population in the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Cammett's books include Compassionate Communalism: Welfare and Sectarianism in Lebanon (Cornell University Press 2014), which won the American Political Science Association (APSA) Giovanni Sartori Book Award and the Honorable Mention for the APSA Gregory Luebbert Book Award; A Political Economy of the Middle East (co-authored with Ishac Diwan, Alan Richards and John Waterbury, Westview Press 2015); The Politics of Non-State Social Welfare in the Global South (co-edited with Lauren Morris MacLean, Cornell University Press, 2014), which received the Honorable Mention for the ARNOVA book award; and Globalization and Business Politics in North Africa (Cambridge University Press, 2007). Her current research explores governance and social service provision, identity politics, and the historical roots of economic and social development, primarily in the Middle East. Cammett has published numerous articles in academic and policy journals, consults for development policy organizations, and is the recipient of various fellowships and awards. She currently serves as a Commissioner on the Lancet Commission on Syria. 

About the editor - Ben Ross Schneider

Ben Ross Schneider is Ford International Professor of Political Science at MIT and Director of the MIT-Brazil program.  Prior to moving to MIT in 2008, he taught at Princeton University and Northwestern University.  His books include Business Politics and the State in 20th Century Latin America (2004), Hierarchical Capitalism in Latin America (2013), Designing Industrial Policy in Latin America:  Business-Government Relations and the New Developmentalism (2015), and New Order and Progress:  Democracy and Development in Brazil (2016).  He has also written on topics such as economic reform, democratization, education, labor markets, inequality, and business groups. 

Contact the editors

If you would like more information about this series, or are interested in writing an Element, email and



Advisory Board

Yuen Yuen Ang, University of Michigan

Catherine Boone, London School of Economics

Stephan Haggard, University of California, San Diego

Prerna Singh, Brown University

Dan Slater, University of Michigan 

Forthcoming Elements

Developmental States by Stephan Haggard

Advanced Praise for Developmental States

“This is an excellent analytical overview of the literature on the developmental state, which manages to pack a lot of insight in a small amount of space. It starts from the early thinking on the topic and brings the story up to date. There is really nothing comparable I know of. A very valuable contribution.”

–Dani Rodrik, Harvard University  


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