photo: Stephen Kaplan

Stephen B. Kaplan

Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Affairs
Room 470
Address: Monroe Hall
2115 G Street, N.W.
Phone: 202-994-6680
Fax: 202-994-7743

Areas of Expertise

Political economy of global markets and development, politics of macroeconomic policymaking, and Latin American politics

Stephen B. Kaplan is an Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Affairs. Professor Kaplan's research and teaching interests focus on the frontiers of international and comparative political economy, where he specializes in the political economy of global finance and development, the rise of China in the Western Hemisphere, and Latin American politics.

Professor Kaplan joined the GWU faculty in the fall of 2010 after completing a postdoctoral research fellowship at the Niehaus Center for Globalization and Governance at Princeton University and his Ph.D at Yale University. While at Yale, Kaplan also worked as a researcher for former Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo at the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization. Prior to his doctoral studies, Professor Kaplan was a senior economic analyst at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, writing extensively on developing country economics, global financial market developments, and emerging market crises from 1998 to 2003.


Ph.D., Yale University


» curriculum vitæ P D F file icon


His book, entitled Globalization and Austerity Politics in Latin America, was published by Cambridge University Press (in the Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics series) in 2013, and was selected for Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles in the Social and Behavioral Sciences that same year. The dissertation on which this book is based won the Mancur Olson Award from the Political Economy Section of the American Political Science Association (2010) for the best dissertation in the field of political economy completed in the previous two years. The book explores the relationship between global market indebtedness and national economic policymaking, offering important lessons for understanding the ongoing economic crises in the U.S. and Europe, as well as the politics of reform in developing countries. It uses a multi-method research strategy that includes extensive field research and country studies from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, and Venezuela. This book is targeted toward a broad audience within political science, economics, and Latin American politics, but is especially relevant for scholars of political economy of global finance, development and democracy, and the politics of economic policymaking. Beyond Latin America's borders, he has also published on the politics of the Chinese exchange rate and central bank independence in Japan.

Kaplan is currently working on his second book manuscript, Neoliberalism in Retreat? The China Boom in Latin America (under contract with Cambridge University Press), which aims to evaluate the political and policymaking implications of growing Chinese economic interdependence in the Western Hemisphere. For the 2014-2015 academic year, Professor Kaplan received an external grant from the Smith Richardson Foundation to advance this book project.

Other current or forthcoming publications:

"Banking Unconditionally: The Political Economy of Chinese Finance in Latin America," published online in the Review of International Political Economy in September 2016.

"Partisan Technocratic Cycles in Latin America," published online in Electoral Politics in October 2016.

"The Political Economy of Sovereign Debt: Global Finance and Electoral Cycles," The Journal of Politics, Volume 79, Number 2, April 2017, with Kaj Thomsson. .

"Fighting Past Economic Wars: Crisis and Austerity in Latin America," forthcoming in the Latin American Research Review in 2018.


Classes Taught

IAFF 2090 Latin America: Problems and Promise

IAFF 3187 Political Economy of Latin America

PSC 2439 International Political Economy

PSC 8453 Advanced Theories of International Political Economy