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Larry Diamond

Larry Diamond, MA, PhD

Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution
Professor, by courtesy, of Political Science and Sociology
Former Director of the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law

Stanford University
Encina Hall C140
Stanford, CA 94305-6055

(650) 724-6448 (voice)
(650) 723-1928 (fax)

Research Interests

democratic development and regime change; U.S. foreign policy affecting democracy abroad; comparative trends in the quality and stability of democracy in developing countries and postcommunist states; and public opinion in new democracies, especially in East Asia


Larry Diamond is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies. He also serves as the Peter E. Haas Faculty Director of the Haas Center for Public Service at Stanford. For more than six years, he directed FSI’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law, and he continues to lead its programs on Liberation Technology, Arab Reform and Democracy, and Democracy in Taiwan.  He is the founding co-editor of the Journal of Democracy and also serves as Senior Consultant at the International Forum for Democratic Studies of the National Endowment for Democracy. His sixth and most recent book, In Search of Democracy (Routledge, 2016), explores the challenges confronting democracy and democracy promotion, gathering together three decades of his work on democratic development, particularly in Africa and Asia.  He has also edited or co-edited more than 40 books on democratic development around the world.

At Stanford University, Diamond is also professor by courtesy of political science and sociology, and is a Bass University Fellow in Undergraduate Education. He teaches courses on comparative democratic development, democracy promotion, and US foreign policy, and advises many Stanford students. In May 2007, he was named “Teacher of the Year” by the Associated Students of Stanford University for teaching that “transcends political and ideological barriers.”  At the June 2007 Commencement ceremony, Diamond was honored by Stanford University with the Dinkelspiel Award for Distinctive Contributions to Undergraduate Education. He was cited, inter alia, for fostering dialogue between Jewish and Muslim students; for "his inspired teaching and commitment to undergraduate education; for the example he sets as a scholar and public intellectual, sharing his passion for democratization, peaceful transitions, and the idea that each of us can contribute to making the world a better place; and for helping make Stanford an ideal place for undergraduates." In January 2014 he received the Richard W. Lyman Award for service to the Stanford Alumni Association.

During 2002-3, Diamond served as a consultant to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and was a contributing author of its report Foreign Aid in the National Interest. He has also advised and lectured to the World Bank, the United Nations, the State Department, and other governmental and nongovernmental agencies dealing with governance and development. During the first three months of 2004, Diamond served as a senior adviser on governance to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad. On his return, he wrote and lectured extensively on U.S. policy in Iraq and the wider challenges of post-conflict stabilization and reconstruction, and was one of the advisors to the Iraq Study Group. His 2005 book, Squandered Victory: The American Occupation and the Bungled Effort to Bring Democracy to Iraq, was one of the first books to critically analyze America's postwar engagement in Iraq. He has also participated in several working groups on the Middle East and has collaborated with Abbas Milani in organizing a Hoover Institution Project on Democracy in Iran.

Diamond is also author of The Spirit of Democracy (2008), Developing Democracy: Toward Consolidation (1999), Promoting Democracy in the 1990s (1995), and Class, Ethnicity, and Democracy in Nigeria (1989, and recently republished in Nigeria). Among his recent edited books are Democracy in Decline?, Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab World, Will China Democratize?, and Liberation Technology: Social Media and the Struggle for Democracy, all edited with Marc F. Plattner, and Politics and Culture in Contemporary Iran, with Abbas Milani.  With Juan J. Linz and Seymour Martin Lipset, he edited the series, Democracy in Developing Countries, which helped to shape a new generation of comparative study of democratic development.


Stanford Affiliations

Hoover Institution

Other Affiliations

National Endowment for Democracy's International Forum for Democratic Studies