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Jeffrey Cason

Provost and Executive Vice President and Knox Professor of Intl. Studies and Political Science

 work(802) 443-5404
 Not teaching 21-22
 Old Chapel 202

Jeffrey Cason became the Interim Provost and Executive Vice President on January 1, 2018 and President Patton made that appointment permanent effective January 1, 2019.  His responsibilities reach across the academic programs of Middlebury including the College, the Institute at Monterey, the Language Schools, the Schools Abroad, the Bread Loaf School of English, the School of the Environment, and the Bread Loaf Conferences.

Dr. Cason joined the Middlebury College faculty in 1994 and was named the Edward C. Knox Professor of International Studies in 2008. He has taught courses in Latin American politics, international and comparative political economy, and in the interdisciplinary program in International and Global Studies.  He was appointed Dean of International Programs in 2006, and served in that capacity until 2015 when he became the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Schools.  In this role, in addition to his previous work overseeing international programs at Middlebury, he became additionally responsible for the Bread Loaf School of English, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conferences, and the School of the Environment.
Dr. Cason received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.  Much of his research has focused on Latin American political economy and economic integration, with a particular focus on Brazil.  His recent books include two published by Routledge:  The Political Economy of Integration:  The Experience of Mercosur (2011), and the second edition of Overseas Research:  A Practical Guide (2010, co-authored with Christopher Barrett).  His research on Brazil and Uruguay has also appeared in a variety of edited books and journals, such as the International Political Science Review, Journal of Democracy, Current History, Latin American Politics and Society, and Latin American Research Review.


Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

FYSE 1569 - Globalization Interrupted      

Globalization Interrupted
Globalization is not inevitable, and in recent years, a wide variety of counterforces—from resurgent nationalisms to global pandemics—have worked to undermine the increased connectivity that has come with rapid technological change. In this seminar we will look at both broad concepts—such as identity formation, nationalism, and trade—and case studies—such as COVID-19, Brexit, and right-wing populism in Brazil—to understand the broad cultural, economic, and political forces at work in the current global context. 3 hrs. sem. CW SOC

Fall 2020, Spring 2021

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IGST 0484 / PSCI 0484 - Political Econ of Regionalism      

The Political Economy of Regionalism
In this course we will address the political economy of regionalism in a variety of national and regional contexts. We will consider both integration projects—such as the European Union and South America’s Mercosur—as well as subnational local autonomy movements, such as those in Catalonia and Scotland. We will study theories of integration as well as case studies from Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa, focusing on the political and economic forces driving both integration and disintegration in their historical and contemporary contexts. We will also consider how globalization affects regional integration projects. (Comparative Politics) 3 hrs. sem. AAL CMP SOC

Fall 2017

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IPEC 0500 - Independent Project      

Independent Project
(Approval Required)

Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022

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IPEC 0700 - Intl.Pol.&Economics SR. Thesis      

Senior Thesis
(Approval Required)

Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022

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PSCI 0500 - Independent Project      

Independent Projects
A program of independent work designed to meet the individual needs of advanced students. (Approval required)

Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022

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PSCI 0700 - Honors Thesis      

Honors Thesis
(Approval required)

Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022

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Curriculum Vitae



Books Published

The Political Economy of Integration: The Experience of Mercosur. London: Routledge (forthcoming June 2010)

Overseas Research: A Practical Guide, 2nd edition (with Christopher Barrett). London: Routledge (2010)

Development and Democracy:  New Perspectives on an Old Debate
(co-edited with sunder Ramaswamy), University Press of New England, 2003

Development at a Crossroads:  Uncertain Paths to Sustainability After the Neoliberal Revolution (co-edited with Michael Carter and Frederic Zimmerman), Global Studies Research Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1998

Overseas Research:  A Practical Guide, co-authored with Christopher Barrett), Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997

Articles and Book Chapters

"Presidentialization, Pluralization, and the Rollback of Itamaraty: Explaining Change in Brazilian Foreign Policy Making in the Cardoso-Lula Era" (with Timothy Power), International Political Science Review 30 (2): 117-140 (2009)

"Searching for a New Formula: Brazilian Political Economy in Reform," Latin American Research Review 42 (2): 212-224 (2007)

"Peace and Economic Interdependence in the Middle East," (with Kirsten Wandschneider and Amichai Kilchevsky), The World Economy 30 (4): 647-664 (April 2007)

"Hopes Dashed? Lula's Brazil," Current History 105 (688) (February 2006)

"Development and Democracy: An Introduction to the Debates," (with Sunder Ramaswamy) in Sunder Ramaswamy and Jeffrey Cason, eds., Development and Democracy: New Perspectives on an Old Debate. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England (2003)

"Electoral Reform, Institutional Change, and Party Adaptation in Uruguay," Latin American Politics and Society 44 (3) (Fall 2002)

"Turning the Tables: State and Society in South America's Economic Integration," (with Jennifer Burrell), Polity 34 (4) (Summer 2002)

"Brazil: Political Institutions and the Delayed Reaction to International Financial Crisis," in Shale Horowitz and Uk Heo, eds., The Political Economy of the World Financial Crisis: Economic Policy and Institutional Change in East Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers (2001)

"Electoral Reform and Stability in Uruguay," Journal of Democracy 11 (2): 85-98 (2000). Reprinted in Larry Diamond and Marc F. Plattner, eds., Electoral Systems and Democracy. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press (2006)

"On the Road to Southern Cone Economic Integration," Journal of Interamerican Studies and World Affairs 42 (1): 23-42 (2000)

"Whatever Happened to the New International Economic Order?," in Andrew Valls, ed., Ethics and International Affairs. Lanham, MD: Rowman Littlefield Publishers (2000)

"Democracy Looks South: Mercosul and the Politics of Brazilian Trade Strategy," in Peter Kingstone and Timothy Power, eds., Democratic Brazil. Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh University Press (2000)

"Electronic Conferencing and International Political Economy," in David G. Brown, ed. Interactive Learning: Vignettes from America's Most Wired Campuses. Bolton, MA: Anker Publishing Company (1999)

"¿La última elección de la Guerra Fria?," Brecha (Montevideo), November 19, 1999

"The State as Naive Entrepreneur: The Political Economy of Export Promotion in Brazil and Tunisia," (with Gregory White), Policy Studies Journal 26 (1): 46-68 (1998)

"Export Promotion in Brazil and East Asia," Carta Internacional (São Paulo) 60: 2 (1998).

"Identifying a Site and Funding Source" (with Christopher Barrett, excerpt from Overseas Research), Items—Social Science Research Council 51 (2-3): 42-44 (1997)

"Development Strategy and Development Tactics: An Agenda for Sustainable Development," (with Frederic Zimmerman), Working Paper Series on Development at the Crossroads, Global Studies Research Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison (1995)

"Automobile Commodity Chains in the NICS: A Comparison of South Korea, Mexico, and Brazil," (with Naeyoung Lee), in Gary Gereffi and Miguel Korzeniewicz, eds., Commodity Chains and Global Capitalism. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press (1994)

"Allende's Chile and the Professional-Managerial Class," Economic Forum, (1984, Rasmussen Prize Essay)

Current Research Project

My current research focuses on the political economy of South American integration. Once considered an abject failure, recent efforts at integration between the Southern Cone countries (Argentina, Chile, Paraguay, and Uruguay) and Brazil have made remarkable progress, to the point that an "imperfect" customs union was initiated among the countries at the beginning of 1995. The premise underlying the research project is quite simple: none of this would have happened without a remarkable change in the politics of the region and the perceived interests of crucial political actors. Whereas there may have been an economic logic suggesting integration for decades, only a change in politics could make it possible. The research focuses on the changing interests and political activities of key actors, particularly important parts of the state, key segments of business, and the organized labor movement.

Research Interests

Latin American Political Economy
Brazilian Politics
Argentine Politics
Political Economy of Integration
Trade Policy