Professor Catherine Boone


Professor of Comparative Politics

Office: CON 6.04, Connaught House
Office Hours: Tuesday 12:30-14:30 (times may vary - check LSE for You to book an appointment)
Tel: +44 (0)20 7107 5153
Website: Experts Directory



Catherine Boone joined the LSE as Professor of Comparative Politics in 2013. She holds a BA from the University of California, and Ph.D from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Professor Boone is currently serving on the steering committee of the American Political Science Association's Africa Initiative and the Advisory Board of the Social Science Research Council's African Peacebuilding Network, as well as numerous editorial boards and committees.

She currently (2014-2016) Chairs the Political Economy Organized Section of the American Political Science Association.

Research Interests

  • Property rights and development
  • Territorial politics and political geography in state- and institution-building
  • Land tenure and land use policy
  • Institutional approaches to political explanation and their critics
  • Subnational political analysis
  • African political economy
  • Land politics in post-conflict settings.

Teaching responsibilities

  • GV335: African Political Economy
  • DV435:African Political Economy
  • GV517:  Comparative Political Economy: New Approaches and Issues in CPE(with David Soskice)


Front cover of Catherine Boone Property and-Political Order in Africa

Property and Political Order: Land Rights and the Structure of Conflict in Africa.
2014. Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics, Cambridge University Press. 

This book argues that variation in the structure of land tenure institutions goes far in predicting differences in the forms and scale of resource conflict. Property institutions also help predict when and where land conflict will scale up into the national electoral arena, producing election violence.

Land tenure rules structure agrarian society and linkages to the state in the farming regions of Africa, producing forms of "political order" that are now being destabilized by population pressure, rising land values, and environmental stress.



Boone, Catherine (2015) "Land Regimes and the Creation of Ethnicity: Evidence from Tanzania," Comparative Politics (October): 67-84

Boone, Catherine (2014) Property and Political Order in Africa: Land Rights and the Structure of Politics. Cambridge University Press

Boone, Catherine (2013) "Property Regimes and the Structure of Politics," Africa: Journal of the International African Institute, 83.1 (February) 188-203

Boone, Catherine (2012) "Ethnic Land Rights in Western Ghana: Landlord-Stranger Relations in the Democratic Era" (with Dennis Duku), Development and Change 43/3 (May) 671-694.

Boone, Catherine (2011) "Politically-Allocated Land Rights and the Geography of Electoral Violence in Kenya,"  Comparative Political Studies, vol. 44, n. 10 (October) 1311-1342

Boone, Catherine (2010) "Multiparty Elections and Land Patronage: Zimbabwe and Côte d'Ivoire," with Norma Kriger.  Commonwealth and Comparative Politics, vol. 48, n. 2 (April) 173-202

Boone, Catherine (2009) "Electoral Populism Where Property Rights Are Weak: Land Politics in Contemporary Sub-Saharan Africa," Comparative Politics, 41/2 (January) 183-201

Boone, Catherine (2003) Political Topographies of the African State: Territorial Authority and Institutional Choice. Cambridge University Press

Boone, Catherine (1993) Merchant Capital and the Roots of State Power in Senegal. Cambridge University Press