About me

aquariumI’m an assistant professor of economics at Dickinson College.

I have a PhD in economics from George Mason University (2015), where I was also a Mercatus Center Graduate Research Fellow. I have a physics bachelor degree (2003) and a plasma physics master degree (2005). I have worked at the Center for Institutional Analysis and Development in Bucharest, Romania for five years (2007-2011).

At Dickinson College I have taught microeconomics (principles and intermediate), and various electives on political economy, entrepreneurship, institutional and development economics, and statistical methods. I have also coordinated faculty-student research projects, which are currently in various stages of completion, with, so far, three on my Dickinson students.

My main research interests are political economy, institutional economics, and entrepreneurship. My papers, books and conference presentations currently fall mainly in two larger research projects: (1) The political economy and institutional theory of polycentric governance. (2) The performance of alternative capitalist systems and the problem of economic disequilibrium. In the first category, I am the co-author of one of the most widely cited papers on the history and definition of “polycentricity”, and I have several other papers that apply the concept to specific topics: democracy as co-production of rules, the institutions of the scientific community, ecological resilience, the stability of the financial system, and federalism under highly imperfect Tiebout competition. In the second category, I have authored and co-authored several papers and a book on applying the rent-seeking model to understand different types of capitalism, methodology papers on how to use statistical methods to build taxonomies of economic systems and evaluate the consequences of constitutions, and theory papers on entrepreneurship, economic disequilibrium, the capacity for collective learning under alternative institutions, and the role of ideas in driving institutional changes.

I have published papers in American Political Science Review, Governance, Business and Politics, Comparative Economic Studies, Kyklos, Constitutional Political Economy, Review of Austrian Economics, and others. I’m the author of Elinor Ostrom: An Intellectual Biography (Rowman & Littlefield International, 2017), co-author with Paul Dragos Aligica of Capitalist Alternatives: Models, Taxonomies, Scenarios (Routledge, 2015), co-author with Paul Dragos Aligica and Peter Boettke of Public Governance and the Classical Liberal Tradition (Oxford University Press, under contract), and co-editor with Jayme Lemke of Elinor Ostrom and the Bloomington School: Building a New Approach to Policy and the Social Sciences (Agenda Publishing / Columbia University Press, under contract).