​​I am Assistant Professor of political science at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California where I conduct research and teach courses on African politics, governance, and development. I am also a Research Associate and Project Manager with the Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) Institute at the University of Gothenburg.


My current research focuses on the politics of state performance in sub-Saharan Africa. I am also working on projects related to the measurement of state capacity and exclusion, technocracy in African cabinets, the effects of oil revenue on bureaucratic institutions in Africa, and the relationship between different forms of distributional inequality and autocratization.


My recent research is published or forthcoming in Development Policy ReviewPolitical Science Research and Methods, Democratization and The Handbook of Democratization in Africa. My work has been funded by The British Academy/Department for International Development, The World Bank, The German Development Institute, The V-Dem Institute, The Smith Richardson Foundation, The Moynihan Institute, U.S. Africa Command, and others. I have conducted field research in Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Madagascar and Senegal.

Rachel Sigman