State Capacity in Comparative Perspective

October 20–21, 2017

This conference is closed to the public.

The objective of the conference is to bring together scholars who study the state in different world regions to explore the fundamental issue of state capacity. We are interested in encouraging cross-national comparisons in order to assess the extent to which the processes and outcomes of state building in different regions are—or are not—comparable.

Some of the key questions this conference seeks to address are as follows: How to conceptualize and measure state capacity? Is the European experience of state building unique? What explains the variation in state capacity across countries and within countries? What’s the relationship between state capacity and conflict, public goods provision, and economic development? Is a strong state always good? Does regime type matter for state building, or vice versa?


Yuhua Wang
Faculty Associate (on leave fall 2017). Assistant Professor, Department of Government, Harvard University.

See also: Conferences, 2017