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Alberto Diaz-Cayeros

Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and Associate Professor, by courtesy, of Political Science

Alberto Diaz-Cayeros joined the FSI faculty in 2013 after serving for five years as the director of the Center for US-Mexico studies at the University of California, San Diego. He earned his Ph.D at Duke University in 1997. He was an assistant professor of political science at Stanford from 2001-2008, before which he served as an assistant professor of political science at the University of California, Los Angeles. Diaz-Cayeros has also served as a researcher at Centro de Investigacion Para el Desarrollo, A.C. from 1997-1999. His work has primarily focused on federalism, poverty and economic reform in Latin America, and Mexico in particular. He has published widely in Spanish and English. His book Overawing the States: Federalism, Fiscal Authority and Centralization in Latin America was published by Cambridge University Press in 2007. His forthcoming book (with Federico Estevez and Beatriz Magaloni) is: The Political Logic of Poverty Relief: Electoral Strategies and Social Policy in Mexico.
Academic Appointments: 
Associate Professor (By courtesy), Political Science
Honors and Awards: 
Victoria Schuck Faculty Scholar, School of Humanities and Sciences, Stanford University. (2007-2008)
Award for the Best Paper presented in the 2000 meeting by the Comparative Politics Section, American Political Science Association (2000)
Award for the Best Dissertation in Political Economy, American Political Science Association (1998)
Visiting Fellow, Harvard University (1996-August 1997)
Dissertation Grant, Institute for the Study of World Politics (ISWP) (September 1993-August 1994)
Distinction in Preliminary Examinations, Duke University (March 1993)
Field Research Grant in Mexico,, Tinker Foundation, the Center of Latin American Studies at Duke (August 1992)
Field Research Grant in Czechoslovakia, Center for International Studies at Duke (June-July 1992)
James B. Duke International Fellowship, Duke University (1990-1993)
Fulbright Fellowship, U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs (1990-1992)
Ford-MacArthur Fellowship, Ford-MacArthur (1990-1992)
High Honors, ITAM (1990)
Senior Fellow, Stanford Center for Innovation in Global Health (2015-Present)
Professional Organizations: 
Member of the Editorial Board, Política y Gobierno (1997 - 2004)
Member of the External Evaluation Board, the Centro de Investigacion y Docencia Economica (CIDE) (2009 - 2011)
Ph.D., Duke University, Political Science (1997)
M.A., Duke University, Political Science (1993)
Licenciatura, Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM), Economics (1990)
Academic and Contact Information
Alternate Contact: 
Administrative Contact
Research & Scholarship
The Governance of Public Health in Mexico, Stanford University
The Governance of Public Health in Mexico

To promote a public health agenda in Mexico that emphasizes patient empowerment and high quality health services provision for the poor. Finding solutions to governance failures undermining public health, through the dissemination of research findings among scholars, NGOs and policy makers.



Criminal Violence, Security and Poverty, Stanford University
Criminal Violence, Security and Poverty

To build up critical capacity at Stanford for the understanding of criminal violence in developing countries, its causes and consequences, and the design of practical solutions for increasing security among the poor.


Mexico, Brazil, Guatemala

Courses Taught: 
Academic Year: 
Latin American Politics
Authoritarian Survival and Poverty Traps: Land Reform in Mexico WORLD DEVELOPMENT Albertus, M., Diaz-Cayeros, A., Magaloni, B., Weingast, B. R. 2016; 77: 154-170
The Beheading of Criminal Organizations and the Dynamics of Violence in Mexico JOURNAL OF CONFLICT RESOLUTION Calderon, G., Robles, G., Diaz-Cayeros, A., Magaloni, B. 2015; 59 (8): 1455-1485
The Mexican War on Drugs: Crime and the Limits of Government Persuasion INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PUBLIC OPINION RESEARCH Romero, V., Magaloni, B., Diaz-Cayeros, A. 2015; 27 (1): 125-137
The Political Logic of Poverty Relief: Electoral Strategies and Social Policy in Mexico Diaz-Cayeros, A., Estevez, F., Magaloni, B. Cambridge University Press. 2015
The Beheading of Criminal Organizations and the Dynamics of Violence in Mexico Journal of Conflict Resolution Gabriela, C., et al 2015

View details for DOI 10.1177/0022002715587053

Traditional Governance, Citizen Engagement and Local Public Goods: Evidence from Mexico World Development Díaz-Cayeros, A., Magaloni, B., Euler , A. R. 2013
Traditional Governance, Citizen Engagement, and Local Public Goods: Evidence from Mexico WORLD DEVELOPMENT Diaz-Cayeros, A., Magaloni, B., Ruiz-Euler, A. 2013; 53: 80-93
AIDING LATIN AMERICA'S POOR JOURNAL OF DEMOCRACY Diaz-Cayeros, A., Magaloni, B. 2009; 20 (4): 36-49
Buying - off the Poor: Effects of Targeted Benefits in the 2006 Presidential Race Consolidating Mexico’s Democracy: The 2006 Presidential Campaign in Comparative Perspective Díaz-Cayeros, A., Estevez, F., Magaloni , B. Johns Hopkins University Press . 2009
Aiding Latin America's Poor Journal of Democracy Diaz-Cayeros, A., Magaloni, B. 2009; 20, 4
Consilidating Mexico's Democracy Díaz-Cayeros, A., Estévez, F., Magaloni, B. 2009
Electoral risk and redistributive politics in Mexico and the United States 62nd Annual Meeting of the Midwest-Political-Science-Association Diaz-Cayeros, A. SPRINGER. 2008: 129–50
Federalism, Fiscal Authority, and Centralization in Latin America Díaz-Cayeros , A. Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics. 2006
Clientelism and Portfolio Diversification: a Model of Electoral Investment with Applications to Mexico Magaloni, B., Díaz-Cayeros, A., Estévez, F. 2006
Federalism, Fiscal Authority, and Centralization in Latin America Diaz-Cayeros, A. Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics. 2006
Endogenous institutional change in the Mexican senate Meeting of the Latin-American-Political-Science-Association Diaz-Cayeros, A. SAGE PUBLICATIONS INC. 2005: 1196–1218
Coalition building strategies and fiscal dependence in Mexican federalism POLITICA Y GOBIERNO Diaz-Cayeros, A. 2004; 11 (2): 231-?
Party dominance and the logic of electoral design in Mexico's transition to democracy Annual Meeting of the Public-Choice-Society Diaz-Cayeros, A., Magaloni, B. SAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD. 2001: 271–93
Party Dominance and the Logic of Electoral Design in Mexico's Transition to Democracy Journal of Theoretical Politics Magaloni, B., Diaz-Cayeros, A. 2001; 13