Darin Christensen


Assistant Professor of Public Policy

Home Department: Public Policy


Darin Christensen is an assistant professor of Public Policy. He received his Ph.D. in political science and M.A. in economics from Stanford University.

He studies the political economy of conflict and development, with a focus on sub-Saharan Africa. One strand of research focuses on the logic of protest and repression: what motivates people to protest, what technologies enable this collective action, and when do governments repress demonstrations? A second strand considers the political determinants and consequences of investments in mining and agribusiness in developing states.

He has consulted on evaluations of USAID and World Bank projects. B.A. political science and German, Duke University.

His publications and ongoing research can be found at darinchristensen.org.

Selected Research

(1) Institutions and Investment in Natural Resources:

Evidence from Liberia
In two complementary projects, we are looking at how institutions — both property rights and community-based monitoring — affect investments in land and forest resources.
(2) Property Rights, Investment, and Local Fiscal Capacity:
Evidence from Colombia
We are studying the effects of helping squatters formalize their property rights. More secure tenure could enable individual investment and promote tax compliance.