Rachel BeattIMG_1465y Riedl is associate professor of political science at Northwestern University, where she is a faculty fellow at the Institute for Policy Research and the Director of the Program of African Studies. Riedl is also a faculty associate at the Program on Equality, Development and Globalization Studies, the Global Politics and Religion Research Group, the Comparative Historical Social Sciences Program, and serves on the Executive Committee of the French Interdisciplinary Group.

The author of the award-winning Authoritarian Origins of Democratic Party Systems in Africa (Cambridge University Press, 2014), she studies institutional development in new democracies, local governance and decentralization policy, religion and politics, and authoritarian regime legacies, with a regional focus in Sub-Saharan Africa.  She has published in the Journal of Politics, Comparative Political Studies, Studies in Comparative International Development, African Affairs, and American Behavioral Scientist, among others. A former Kellogg Institute visiting fellow, Yale Program on Democracy Fellow, and Faculty Fulbright Scholar, she holds a PhD from Princeton University.

Riedl is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and has conducted policy analysis for USAID, the World Bank, the State Department, the Carter Center, and other organizations on issues pertaining to governance reforms, elections, democratic representation and identity politics.