Saad Ahmad Gulzar

Assistant Professor of Political Science
I am an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Stanford University. My research asks under what conditions can representative government – one that provides equality of voice and influence – improve people’s lives?

Focusing on South Asia, I pose two broad sets of questions:
1. Does representative government improve redistribution at the cost of policy efficiency? My work shows that broadening political representation can redistribute welfare towards marginalized communities without incurring efficiency costs. I argue that taking electoral incentives seriously holds the key to making politics work for development.
2. How can societies transition towards more representative government? I examine long-term historical processes of transitions and their policy consequences. I also study how barriers that prevent broader political participation can be overcome both at the individual and organizational levels. My work shows that politics can be made more inclusive and that doing so can better align policy outcomes with the preferences of people.

I work closely with politicians, political parties, bureaucrats, and government agencies in Pakistan, India, and Nepal, and strive to make these collaborations meaningful for research and policy. My work has been published in the American Political Science Review, the Journal of Politics, the Journal of Development Economics, and the Journal of the European Economic Association.

I received my Ph.D. in Political Science at New York University in 2017, where my work received the Best Dissertation Award from the American Political Science Association’s Experiments Section.

Please visit my website for my cv and research: saadgulzar.com

Contact

Office
Encina Hall West, Room 412

Office Hours

On Leave - Fall 2020

Research Interests