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Imke Harbers

Professor of political science, University of Amsterdam

Residency: August 2016 – July 2017
Past Residency: January – December 2016

Research Project: Neither Dwarf nor Leviathan: Explaining Territorial and Functional Variation in State Capacity

Research Interests: political institutions; state formation; subnational comparative research; GIS and spatial analysis; and multimethod research design


Imke Harbers is an associate professor of political science at the University of Amsterdam. Her research focuses on subnational political institutions, public good provision and democracy, with a regional emphasis on Latin America. She holds a doctorate from Leiden University and has been a junior fellow at the German Development Institute.

Her current research, supported by a Marie Curie Global Fellowship from the European Commission, examines why states invest more in building capacity in some regions of a country than in others and why the coercive and caring capacity of states is geographically uneven. On the basis of a subnational comparative analysis of Mexico, the project analyzes why states build hospitals, schools, police stations and military barracks in specific places.