Matt Kirwin has over 20 years of work and research experience on politics, development, and security in Africa. He is currently a Division Chief in the Office of Opinion Research at the US Department of State. He started at State in 2010 and has covered the Sahel and Nigeria as an analyst during which he was awarded the Superior Honor and Meritorious Honor Awards. He has authored multiple Presidential Daily Briefings and has routinely briefed Assistant Secretaries on developments in Africa. He is an expert on public opinion analysis and has lectured on the topic at multiple universities.
He has a PhD in Political Science from Michigan State University, a Masters in International Affairs from Ohio University, and Bachelors in International Studies from the Ohio State University. His research has been supported by a Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Grant, a West African Research Association pre-Dissertation Grant and the American Political Science Association. He served in the Peace Corps in Niger and is fluent in Hausa and French.