Clark C. Gibson

Professor of Political Science/ Director of International Studies

Professor Gibson is Professor and former Department Chair of Political Science and Director of the International Studies Program at UC San Diego. He studies the politics of democracy and development, especially topics concerning foreign aid, elections, political accountability, political institutions, and the environment. He explores these issues in Africa, Central and South America, Asia, and the United States and has published his work in dozens of scholarly articles and chapters.  Professor Gibson's latest books examine the effectiveness and consequences of foreign aid.  Improving Democracy Assistance: Building Knowledge Through Evaluations and Research (2008 National Academies Press, with Goldstone et al.) investigates USAID’s democracy promotion programs.  Samaritan’s Dilemma: The Political Economy of Development Aid (Oxford 2005, co-authors E. Ostrom, K. Andersson, and S. Shivakumar) analyzes how the structure of foreign aid can produce perverse outcomes that impede their effectiveness.  His other books focus on the political economy of the environment: Politicians and Poachers: The Political Economy of Wildlife Policy in Africa (Cambridge 1999), People and Forests: Communities, Institutions, and Governance (MIT 2000; coeditors E. Ostrom and M. McKean) andCommunities and the Environment: Ethnicity, Gender, and the State in Community-Based Conservation (Rutgers 2001; coeditor A. Agrawal). Currently, he is working on multiple projects that assess the determinants of voting behavior in Africa by using original data from exit polls designed and implemented by the research team he founded at UCSD: The Project on African Political Economy (PAPE).  Professor Gibson has been a consultant for the World Bank, USAID, The National Academy of Sciences, and the United Nations.  He has also served on many electoral observer missions around the world, most recently in Afghanistan. 

Ph.D. Duke University, 1995
Comparative Politics, Political Economy

Curriculum Vitae

Core Faculty