Dr. Jessica Gottlieb joined the Bush School after earning her PhD in political science at Stanford University. She also holds a master’s degree in economics from Stanford University. She previously studied at Yale University, receiving a dual BA degree cum laude in political science and international studies in 2004. While at Stanford, Gottlieb received the Stanford Interdisciplinary Fellowship and was a pre-doctoral fellow at the Center for Democracy Development and the Rule of Law.
Her research focuses on democratic accountability and clientelism, the political economy of development, and the political implications of unequal gender norms. Much of her research has been in sub-Saharan Africa, where she has conducted field experiments, behavioral games, and surveys. She has published articles in the American Journal of Political Science and World Politics.
Her dissertation research was a study in Mali of why free and fair elections failed to generate government accountability in a new democracy. Currently, Gottlieb is working on projects in Senegal examining the role of political intermediaries in influencing voter behavior and how voter coordination determines public good distribution by parties. With several co-PIs and as part of EGAP’s Metaketa project, she led a large-scale field experiment around the 2015 elections in Benin to examine which types of information and which delivery mechanisms have the greatest impact on electoral accountability. Her work has also taken her to Guinea, Liberia, and the West Bank, where she trained and recruited educators and other professionals and managed survey teams. Prior to her doctoral studies, Gottlieb worked at the Center for Global Development on a project encouraging donors, country governments, and multilateral organizations to better learn what works in development through improved impact evaluation.
Gottlieb has taught courses in the political economy of development in Africa, field research methods, and political and economic institutions; and she led a capstone project to Benin.