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Brian Libgober

Assistant Professor of Political Science and Law (by courtesy)

PhD, Government, Harvard University, 2018

Brian Libgober's research focuses on the political economy of American institutions, specializing in administrative policymaking, interest group politics, and financial regulation. As a political scientist and legal scholar, he is interested in the relationship between economic inequality, interest group power, and the design of legal institutions. He is also a senior research scholar at Yale Law School. Libgober’s recent article, Inequality in Administrative Democracy: Large-Scale Evidence from American Financial Regulation, won the Herbert Kaufman Award for best paper presented at the 2021 APSA Annual Conference.

He is also interested in issues of access to justice and has studied the extent and causes for racial discrimination in the market. Recently, the National Science Foundation awarded Libgober and two collaborators over $400,000 to conduct studies following up on his solo-authored law review article, Getting a Lawyer While Black, which was also covered in a number of media outlets.

Libgober obtained his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 2015 and M.A. in statistics from Harvard University in 2017. Prior to attending law school, he worked for President Obama’s re-election campaign in polling analytics. 

Current Research

Lobbying. Libgober has various projects that investigate lobbying in American politics, including inequality in agency rulemaking.

Regulations. Libgober is studying the effectiveness of a cost-benefit analysis and reason-giving for reducing cognitive biases in federal regulations.

Political Participation of Refugees. Libgober is exploring how an immigrant’s origin country influences voting behavior and partisan preferences.

Personnel and the Trump Presidency. Libgober is examining the Trump administration’s approach to personnel politics, including which parts of the federal executive branch experienced turnover and which ones expanded during his presidency. 

Selected Publications

Abi-Hassan, S., J. Box-Steffensmeier, D. Christenson, A. Kaufman, and B. Libgober. Forthcoming. “The political ideologies of organized interests and amicus curiae briefs: Large-scale, social network imputation of ideal points.” Political Analysis. 

Carpenter, D., and B. Libgober. Forthcoming.  “High-traceability administrative politics: Strategic commenting upon federal reserve debit card regulations.”

Libgober, B. 2020. Strategic proposals, endogenous comments, and bias in rulemaking. The Journal of Politics 82(2): 642–56.

Libgober, B. 2020. Meetings, comments, and the distributive politics of rulemaking. Quarterly Journal of Political Science 15(4): 449–81.

Carpenter, D., D. Judge-Lord, B. Libgober, and S. Rashin. 2020. Data and methods for analyzing special interest influence in rulemaking. Interest Groups & Advocacy 9: 425–35.

Libgober, B. 2020. Getting a lawyer while Black: A field experiment. Lewis & Clark Law Review 24(1): 52–108.