Discussing Nigeria on the PBS NewsHour
School of International Service
LeVan focuses on comparative political institutions, democratization, and African security. His book,"Dictators and Democracy in African Development: The Political Economy of Good Governance in Nigeria" (Cambridge University Press, 2015) explains two categories of public policy performance over fifty years. African Studies Quarterly calls it a "seminal book." His new book, co-authored with with SPA Professor Todd Eisenstadt and Loyola University Professor Tofigh Maboudi, is "Constituents before Assembly" (Cambridge University Press, 2017). Their empirical study of all new constitutions 1974-2014 finds that participatory constitution-making has long term positive effects on the level of democracy. He is the co-editor, with Patrick Ukata, of the Oxford Handbook of Nigerian Politics (forthcoming from Oxford University Press, 2018).
He has also published influential critiques of power sharing in Africa and his 2011 essay "Questioning Tocqueville in Africa" won the Frank Cass Prize for Best Article by a Young Scholar from Routledge/Taylor & Francis Publishing. Other research examines coalition governments in Africa, and property rights and migration in Abuja, Nigeria.
A collection of essays published in 2015 (with Joseph Fashagba and Edward McMahon) examines state-level legislative politics in Africa.
Prior to joining academia, he worked as a legislative director in the U.S. Congress and then as an adviser to Nigeria's National Assembly. He publishes the blog, Development4security and tweets @Dev4Security.
A frequent commentator on African politics, he has appeared on PBS NewsHour, NPR's Diane Rehm Show, Voice of America TV, BBC World Television, al Jazeera, MSNBC, Amy Goodman's Democracy Now!
PhD, political science, University of California, San Diego; MA, political science, American University; BA, political science, George Washington University
- Favorite Spot on Campus
- The CRS lounge, and the Korean garden
- Favorite Place in Washington DC
- I like Open City, Politics & Prose, and Qualia. I try to go to either the Black Cat or the 930 once a month!
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