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Juan Fernando Ibarra Del Cueto

Professor of Political Science, Colgate University

Residency: January 2020 – June 2020

Research Project: The Political Economy of Divergence: Subnational Development Regimes in Mexico

Research Interests: state-building, democratization, federalism, political economy of development


Juan Fernando Ibarra Del Cueto is an assistant professor of Political Science at Colgate University. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Chicago and specializes in the field of comparative politics, with a regional focus on Latin America. His most recent work explores the social origins of institutional building, the relationship between political institutions and development outcomes at the subnational level in Mexico, and the differential quality of democracy in Mexican states.

His current research project aims to explain the divergent economic trajectories of Mexican states in recent times. From 1940 to 1990, poorer states grew at a faster pace than richer ones, which homogenized in relative terms the levels of development in the country. After 1990, however, the gap between richer and poorer states has become wider. In contrast to purely economic interpretations of these trends, the guiding hypothesis of this project is that the interaction of political competition with patterns of institutional building at the local level have created subnational “development regimes”, which have had a significant effect on the contrasting paths of economic growth followed by Mexican states during the last quarter-century.