Close menu Resources for... William & Mary
W&M menu close William & Mary
Directory Page Title

Stephen Hanson

Lettie Pate Evans Professor of Government

Office: Chancellors 235
Links: [[sehanson, Email]]
Office Hours: Tuesdays 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Research Interests: Post-Communist Politics & Comparative Politics


Stephen E. Hanson is the Lettie Pate Evans Professor in the Department of Government at William & Mary.  At William & Mary, he served as the Vice Provost for Academic and International Affairs from 2011 to 2022.

Hanson received his B.A. in Social Studies from Harvard University (1985) and his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley (1991).

He served from 20112021 as the Director of the Wendy and Emery Reves Center for International Studies, while also serving as Vice Provost for International Affairs at William & Mary. In 2016, William & Mary received the Senator Paul Simon Award for Campus Internationalization from NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

Hanson served from 20092011 as the Vice Provost for Global Affairs, and from 20002008 as the Director of the Ellison Center for Russian, East European, and Central Asian Studies at the Jackson School of International Studies, at the University of Washington, Seattle.

Hanson is the author of Post-Imperial Democracies: Ideology and Party Formation in Third Republic France, Weimar Germany, and Post-Soviet Russia (Cambridge University Press, 2010) and Time and Revolution: Marxism and the Design of Soviet Institutions (University of North Carolina Press, 1997), which received the 1998 Wayne S. Vucinich book award from the Association for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies. He is the co-author (with Richard Anderson Jr., M. Steven Fish, and Philip Roeder) of Postcommunism and the Theory of Democracy (Princeton University Press, 2001).

Hanson is also the co-editor (with Grzegorz Ekiert) of Capitalism and Democracy in Eastern and Central Europe: Assessing the Legacy of Communist Rule (Cambridge University Press, 2003) and (with Willfried Spohn) of Can Europe Work? Germany and the Reconstruction of Postcommunist Societies (University of Washington Press, 1995). His numerous articles analyzing postcommunist Russia in comparative perspective, the role of ideology in institutional change, and qualitative methods for social science research have appeared in such journals as Comparative Political Studies, Comparative Politics, Perspectives on Politics, The Canadian Journal of Political Science/Revue Canadienne de Science Politique, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Post-Soviet Affairs, Communist and Post-Communist Studies, and East European Politics and Societies.

Hanson won the University of Washington’s Distinguished Teaching Award in 2004 and the UW’s outstanding undergraduate mentor award in 2005. He has also taught as a Visiting Associate Professor of Government at Harvard University and as a Visiting Professor of Political Science at Yale University. He has been a Visiting Scholar at the Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies at Harvard, a Visiting Scholar at the Department of Politics and International Relations at Oxford University, and a Research Scholar at the Kennan Institute at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

Hanson is a member of the Board of Advisors of the National Bureau of Asian Research. From 2004-2008, he was Academic Director of the Program on New Approaches to Russian Security (PONARS), based in Washington, D.C. He served as team lead on Russian domestic politics for the Obama for America 2008 foreign policy advisory group.

Hanson has served on the editorial or advisory boards of a number of journals, including Slavic Review, Russian Politics, Comparative Politics, Comparative Political Studies, and Demokratizatsiya. From 20022009, he worked with General Editor Margaret Levi as Assistant General Editor of the Cambridge University Press’s Series in Comparative Politics.

Hanson has received grant support from the Social Science Research Council, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Henry M. Jackson Foundation. He has been invited to lecture at a number of prestigious academic and policy-oriented institutions, including the Aspen Institute, the Institute for the Economy in Transition (Moscow), Hamburg University, the University of Strathclyde (Glasgow), Yale University, Brown University, the Harriman Institute of Columbia University, the University of California at Berkeley, Indiana University, University of Notre Dame, the University of Chicago, and George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs.

Please view Stephen E. Hanson's CV (PDF) for more information.