Sarah Hummel received her PhD in Politics from Princeton University in 2014. From 2014 to 2018, she was an Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor of Government at Harvard University.
Her research interests center on the domestic and international politics of authoritarian countries, both cross-nationally and with a regional focus on the post-Soviet space. Currently, she is working on a book project about the ways in which authoritarian and semi-authoritarian legislatures serve as stabilizing institutions in the context of changing domestic power structures. This project uses evidence from Russia, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia to identify if and when individual legislators act in ways that are consistent with sharing information about societal preferences, constraining dictatorial power grabs, and/or pursuing the material benefits associated with office. Her other research touches on topics of leader selection and succession, protest and mass mobilization, foreign policy, and distributive politics.
Her teaching experience is primarily in authoritarian politics and formal theory, which she has taught at both the undergraduate and graduate level.