I am Associate Professor of Political Science at Beloit College in Wisconsin, USA. My research interests lie at the intersection of law and politics in eastern and southern Africa. My book, Pathways to Judicial Power in Transitional States, was published by Routledge in 2013.


My work begins from the assumption that an effective legal system and judiciary is essential to securing both good governance and democracy. Yet the role of the judiciary and, the mechanisms by which judicial independence and power are established remain poorly understood in sub-Saharan Africa. I argue that rule of law institutions have to be treated as political institutions, fully embedded in the logic of elite calculations, while also recognizing that judges shape their own legitimacy and empowerment.


I joined the Beloit Political Science department in 2008 and teach courses in international and comparative politics, and African Studies. Courses offered include politics of international development, contemporary African politics, comparative law and courts, building democracy and women and politics in Africa.