Steven E. Finkel

  • Daniel Wallace Professor

Steven E. Finkel is the Daniel H. Wallace Professor of Political Science at the University of Pittsburgh. He served as Chair of the Department from 2011-2018. Professor Finkel's areas of expertise include comparative political behavior, public opinion, democratization, and quantitative methods. He is the author of Causal Analysis with Panel Data (Sage Publications, 1995) as well as over 40 articles on political participation, voting behavior, and civic education in new and established democracies.  Since 1997, he has conducted numerous evaluations of the effectiveness of US and other international donors’ civic education programs in promoting democratic attitudes and political participation in South Africa, Poland, the Dominican Republic, and Kenya.  He has also pioneered the use of survey research as an aid to peace negotiations in conflict settings such as Sri Lanka and Kosovo. Between 2004 and 2007, he conducted the first macro-comparative evaluation of the impact of all USAID democracy assistance programs on democratic development in recipient countries (published in World Politics, 2007).   He received his PhD in 1984 in political science from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, and taught at the University of Virginia for 21 years before joining the Pittsburgh faculty in 2005.  He held a joint appointment as Professor of Applied Quantitative and Qualitative Methods from 2005-2008 at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, Germany.  



PS 0700 Research Methods in Political Science

PS 1370 Special Topics in Comparative Politics

PS 2313 Comparative Political Behavior

PS 2701 Advanced Methodology: Longitudinal Data Analysis

PS 2730 Maximum Likelihood Methods

Education & Training

  • PhD, State University of New York, Stony Brook, 1984

Representative Publications

Finkel, Steven E. and Junghyun Lim, “The Supply and Demand Model of Civic Education: Evidence from A Field Experiment in the Democratic Republic of Congo”, Democratization. [PDF]

Finkel, Steven E., John McCauley, Michael Neureiter, and Chris Belasco, “Communal Violence and Support for Violent Extremism: Evidence from the Sahel”, Political Psychology. [PDF]

Kim Mannemar Sønderskov, Peter Thisted Dinesen, Steven E. Finkel, and Kasper Moller Hansen, “Crime Victimization Increases Turnout: Evidence from Individual-Level Administrative Panel Data”, British Journal of Political Science. [PDF]

Finkel, Steven E., Jeremy Horowitz, and Reynaldo T. Rojo-Mendoza. 2012. “Civic Education and Democratic Backsliding in the Wake of Kenya’s Post-2007 Election Violence.” Journal of Politics. [PDF]

Finkel, Steven E. and Amy Erica Smith. 2011. “Civic Education, Political Discussion and the Social Transmission of Democratic Knowledge and Values in a New Democracy:  Kenya 2002.” American Journal of Political Science55(2): 417-435. [PDF]

Finkel, Steven E., Aníbal Pérez-Liñán, and Mitchell A. Seligson. 2007. “The Effects of U.S. Foreign Assistance on Democracy Building, 1990-2003.” World Politics 59(3): 404-439. [PDF]

Finkel, Steven E. 2003. “Can Democracy Be Taught?” Journal of Democracy 14(4): 137-151. [PDF]

Finkel, Steven E. and Edward N. Muller. 1998. “Rational Choice and the Dynamics of Collective Political Action: Evaluating Alternative Models with Panel Data.” American Political Science Review 92(1): 37-50. [PDF]


Area of Study