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Matthew R. Cleary

Matthew R. Cleary

Contact Information:


539 Eggers Hall

Matthew R. Cleary

Associate Professor, Political Science Department

Senior Research Associate, Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration

Advisory Board Member and Senior Research Associate, Program on Latin America and the Caribbean


  • 2024 Spring
    • MAX 132 Global Community
    • LAS/PSC 335/334 Mexico and the United States
  • 2023 Fall
    • MAX 132 Global Community
    • LAS/PSC 333 Politics of Latin America
  • 2023 Spring
    • MAX 132 Global Community
    • PSC 780 Seminar on Political Systems - Latin American Politics
  • 2022 Fall
    • MAX 132 Global Community
    • LAS/PSC 333 Politics of Latin America

Highest degree earned

Ph.D., University of Chicago, 2004

Areas of Expertise

Latin American politics, political institutions, democratization, ethnic politics

Research Interests

I have general interests in democratization and democratic theory, ethnic politics and ethnic conflict, and Latin American politics.

Research Grant Awards and Projects

"The Effects of Indigenous Autonomy in Southern Mexico", Sponsored by National Science Foundation.

"Multiculturalism and the State: Subordinated Autonomy in Indigenous Mexico", Sponsored by Maxwell School.

Selected Publications

  • Books
    • Cleary, M., The Sources of Democratic Responsiveness in Mexico. University of Notre Dame Press, 2010.
    • Cleary, M., Stokes, S. C., Democracy and the Culture of Skepticism: Political Trust in Argentina and Mexico. Russell Sage Foundation, 2006.
  • Journal Articles
    • Cleary, M., Ozturk, A., "When Does Backsliding Lead to Breakdown? Uncertainty and Opposition Strategies in Democracies at Risk." Perspectives on Politics, 2022.
    • Cleary, M., Rittinger, E., "Confronting Coup Risk in the Latin American Left." Studies in Comparative International Development, 2013.
    • Cleary, M., "Explaining the Left’s Resurgence." Diamond, L., Plattner, M. F. and Bruns, D. A. (eds.) Latin America’s Struggle for Democracy, 2008.
    • Cleary, M., "Electoral Competition, Participation, and Government Responsiveness in Mexico." American Journal of Political Science, 2007.
    • Cleary, M., "A ‘Left Turn’ in Latin America? Explaining the Left’s Resurgence." Journal of Democracy, 2006.
    • Cleary, M., "Competencia electoral, influencia ciudadana y desempeño del gobierno en los municipios mexicanos." Política y Gobierno, 2003.
    • Cleary, M., "Democracy and Indigenous Rebellion in Latin America." Comparative Political Studies, 2000.
  • Book Chapter
    • Cleary, M., Stokes, S. C., "Whom Can We Trust? How Groups, Networks, and Institutions Make Trust Possible." In Trust and Democracy in Comparative Perspective. Cook, K., Hardin, R. and Levi, M. (eds.) Russell Sage Foundation, 2009.
  • Book Reviews
    • Cleary, M., Correa-Cabrera, G., "The Americas Quarterly." In Democracy in “Two Mexicos”: Political Institutions in Oaxaca and Nuevo Leon. , 2014.
    • Cleary, M., Selee, A., "Política y Gobierno." In Decentralization, Democratization, and Informal Power in Mexico. , 2012.
    • Cleary, M., Staton, J. K., "Comparative Political Studies." In Judicial Power and Strategic Communication in Mexico. , 2011.
    • Cleary, M., "Perspectives on Politics." In Religious Pluralism, Democracy, and the Catholic Church in Latin America. Hagopian, F. (ed.) , 2011.
    • Cleary, M., "Latin American Politics and Society." In Leftovers: Tales of the Latin American Left. Castaneda, J. G., Morales, M. A. (eds.) , 2009.
    • Cleary, M., Tilly, C., "Political Psychology." In Democracy. , 2008.
    • Cleary, M., Mendez de Hoyos, I., "Política y Gobierno." In Transición a la Democracia en México: Competencia partidista y reformas electorales 1977- 2003. , 2007.
  • Encyclopedia Entry
    • Cleary, M., "World Scholar: Latin America & the Caribbean." In Left Turns in Latin America. Gale, Cengage Learning, 2011.

Presentations and Events

American PoliticalScience Association Annual Meeting, "Multiculturalism and Democracy in Indigenous Mexico: the case of Female Participation" (September, 2017)

Rethinking Democracy Conference, "The Theory and the Damage Done: Some Negative Consequences of the Folk Theory, in Comparative Perspective" (May 12, 2017)

Congress of the Latin American Studies Association, "Multiculturalism and Democracy in Indigenous Mexico: the case of Female Participation" (April 30, 2017)

International Workshop on the Subnational State in Latin America and the Congress of the Latin American Studies Association, University of Amsterdam , "Multiculturalism and Democracy in Indigenous Mexico: the case of Female Participation" (March 14, 2017)

Conversations in IR speaker series, "Is Democracy Under Threat in Latin America?" (March 6, 2017)

Honors and Accolades

Excellence in Graduate Education Faculty Recognition Award, Syracuse University (2013)

Program on Latin America and the Caribbean
346 Eggers Hall