photo: Adam Ziegfeld

Adam Ziegfeld

International Council Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Affairs
Room 408
Address: Monroe Hall
2115 G Street, NW
Phone: 202-994-4352
Fax: 202-994-7743

Areas of Expertise

South Asia, political parties, elections, clientelism, ethnic politics

Adam Ziegfeld is a political scientist who studies political parties and elections, primarily in India. More broadly, he is interested in electoral politics in the context of new and developing-world democracies and understanding why some political parties thrive while others fail and what factors influence the choices voters make at election time.

Professor Ziegfeld’s forthcoming book, Why Regional Parties?, published by Cambridge University Press, explains the extraordinary success of regional political parties in India. Other research has examined a range of phenomena related to political parties and elections: electoral rules, candidate characteristics, dominant political parties, voter turnout, and political dynasties. He is currently working on a new book project that explores why and under what conditions political parties cooperate with one another to form alliances prior elections.

Professor Ziegfeld has conducted two years of field research in India, mainly in the states of Haryana, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, and West Bengal. In addition to his scholarly writing, Professor Ziegfeld has published op-eds in The Washington Post, Times of India, and Indian Express. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from MIT and his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College. Prior to coming to GW, he held post-doctoral fellowships at Nuffield College, Oxford, and the University of Chicago.

» curriculum vitæ P D F file icon


Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Why Regional Parties? Clientelism, Elites, and the Indian Party System. Forthcoming. New York: Cambridge University Press.

With Maya Tudor. “How Opposition Parties Sustain Single-Party Dominance: Lessons from India. Party Politics. Forthcoming.

Who Wins Votes? Candidate Characteristics in Indian Elections.” Asian Survey. 2013.

Are Higher-Magnitude Electoral Districts Always Better for Small Parties?Electoral Studies 32 (1): 63-77. 2012

Coalition Government and Party System Change: Explaining the Rise of Regional Political Parties in India.” Comparative Politics 45 (1): 69-87.

Classes Taught

PSC 2369 Comparative Politics of South Asia
PSC 6388 Politics and Policy in Asia