James Robinson is Dr. Richard L. Pearson Professor of Global Conflict Studies and one of only nine University Professors at the University of Chicago. He is also the inaugural director of the Pearson Institute for the Study and Resolution of Global Conflicts at the Harris School of Public Policy. He studied economics at the London School of Economics, the University of Warwick, and Yale University, and before coming to Chicago he taught in the Departments of Government, Economics, History, and Human and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard. His main research interests are in comparative economic and political development with a particular interest in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. He is co-author with Daron Acemoglu of the books Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy and Why Nations Fail, which has been translated into 35 languages including Arabic, Dari, Farsi and Mongolian. Their next book, Balance of Power, will be published by Penguin in 2019. He is currently conducting research in Bolivia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone, Haiti, and Colombia, where he has taught for over 20 years during the summer at the University of the Andes in Bogotá.

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