School of Humanities and Sciences


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  • David D. Laitin

    David D. Laitin

    James T. Watkins IV and Elise V. Watkins Professor

    BioDavid D. Laitin is the James T. Watkins IV and Elise V. Watkins Professor of Political Science at Stanford University. He received his BA from Swarthmore College, and then served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Somalia and Grenada, where he became national tennis champion in 1970. Back in the US, he received his Ph.D. in political science from UC Berkeley, working under the direction of Ernst Haas and Hanna Pitkin.

    He has taught at three great universities: UCSD (1975-87), the University of Chicago (1987-1999) and now at Stanford. Over his career, as a student of comparative politics, he has conducted field research in Somalia, Yorubaland (Nigeria), Catalonia (Spain), Estonia, and France, all the time focusing on issues of language and religion, and how these cultural phenomena link nation to state. His books include Politics, Language and Thought: The Somali Experience (1977), Hegemony and Culture: Politics and Religious Change among the Yoruba (1986), Language Repertoires and State Construction in Africa (1992), Identity in Formation: The Russian-Speaking Populations in the Near Abroad (1998); Nations, States and Violence (2007); Why Muslim Integration Fails in Christian-Heritage Societies (2016); and African Politics Since Independence (2019).

    Over the past decade, mostly in collaboration with James Fearon, he has published several papers on ethnicity, ethnic cooperation, the sources of civil war, and on policies that work to settle civil wars. Laitin has also collaborated with Alan Krueger on international terrorism and with Eli Berman on suicide terrorism.

    In 2008-2009, with support from the National Science Foundation, and with a visiting appointment at Sciences-Po Paris, Laitin conducted ethnographic, survey and experimental research on Muslim integration into France, seeking to assess the magnitude of religious discrimination and isolate the mechanisms that sustain it. The initial results from that project were published in the "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences" (2010).

    In 2016, Laitin became co-director of Stanford's Immigration Policy Lab, and has co-authored several papers published in "Science", "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences" and "Nature Human Behavior" that estimate the effects of policy on immigrant integration.

    Laitin has been a recipient of fellowships from the Howard Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the Russell Sage Foundation. He is an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences. In 2021 Laitin was the recipient of the John Skytte Prize in Political Science from the Johan Skytte Foundation in Uppsala University, Sweden.

  • Bradley Larsen

    Bradley Larsen

    Assistant Professor of Economics

    BioBrad Larsen joined the Department of Economics at Stanford University in 2014. Prior to this, he obtained a BA in Economics and BS in Mathematics from Brigham Young University and a PhD in Economics from MIT, and spent one year as postdoctoral researcher at eBay Research. He is a Faculty Research Fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research, a Faculty Fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, and an Affiliated Faculty of the The Digital Economy Lab at the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered AI. He is currently a W. Glenn Campbell and Rita Ricardo-Campbell National Fellow at the Hoover Institution.

    His primary area of research is Industrial Organization, with specific emphasis on bargaining and occupational licensing. His recent research projects study large datasets of alternating-offer-negotiation settings to analyze behavioral patterns and efficiency in bargaining. He also studies the effects of occupational licensing regulations on market outcomes such as prices, competition, and the distribution of service quality. Other recent projects study auctions, consumer search, digital copyright law and grey-market activity, changes in US wage inequality due to increased import competition with China, the effects of laws legitimizing arbitrage (parallel importation) across international markets, and applied econometric methods. His latest publications and working papers can be found at his website.