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Elizabeth J. Zechmeister

Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Political Science
Director, Latin American Public Opinion Project (LAPOP)

Professor Zechmeister received her Ph.D. from Duke University in 2003. Her research focuses on comparative political behavior and public opinion, in particular in Latin America. Her work includes studies of voting, ideology, political parties, representation, charisma, and crisis. Zechmeister has received support from the National Science Foundation for investigations into the public opinion consequences of terrorist threat and natural disaster, respectively. She has published articles in the American Journal of Political Science, the Journal of Politics, Comparative Political Studies, and Political Behavior, among other outlets. She is co-author of Democracy at Risk: How Terrorist Threats Affect the Public (University of Chicago Press, 2009) and Latin American Party Systems (Cambridge University Press, 2010). She is co-editor of The Latin American Voter: Pursuing Representation and Accountability in Challenging Contexts (University of Michigan Press, 2015). In 2012, she was the recipient of the Vanderbilt A&S Jeffrey Nordhaus Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching and in 2015 she received the Vanderbilt Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching. Her courses focus on Latin American politics, Mexican politics, research design, and comparative political behavior and public opinion.

Representative publications

  • Cohen, Mollie J., Facundo K. Salles Kobilanski, and Elizabeth J. Zechmeister. 2018. Electoral Volatility in Latin America. Journal of Politics 80(3): 1017-1022.  
  •   Carlin, Ryan E., Matthew M. Singer, and Elizabeth J. Zechmeister, Eds. 2015. The Latin American Voter: Pursuing Representation and Accountability in Challenging Contexts, University of Michigan Press.
  • Carlin, Ryan E., Gregory J. Love, and Elizabeth J. Zechmeister. 2014. Natural Disaster and Democratic Legitimacy: The Public Consequences of Chile's 2010 Earthquake and Tsunami. Political Research Quarterly 67(1): 3-15.
  •   Zechmeister, Elizabeth J., and Daniel Zizumbo-Colunga. 2013. The Varying Political Toll of Concerns about Corruption in Good versus Bad Economic Times. Comparative Political Studies 46(10): 1190-1218.
  • Merolla, Jennifer L., and Elizabeth J. Zechmeister. 2013. Evaluating Political Leaders in Times of Terror and Economic Threat: The Conditioning Influence of Politician Partisanship. Journal of Politics 75(3): 599-612
  • View Curriculum Vitae