Meir Alkon is a China and the World Program An Wang Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University. He received his PhD jointly in the Department of Politics and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. He researches and teaches topics within international and comparative political economy, with a focus on trade and globalization and energy and the environment. Meir’s research has been published in journals including The Journal of Politics, World Development, Studies in Comparative International Development, Energy Policy, Economics and Politics, and Energy for Sustainable Development.

His book project seeks to explain China’s puzzling shift to an increasingly state-led economy, reversing the trajectory of several preceding decades of market-oriented reforms. Applying the analytical insights of open economy politics in shifting domestic preferences, I develop a theory explaining when and how economic openness and interdependence can create political risks for authoritarian regime survival – risks that then filter through domestic politics to limit the very progress of economic liberalization that created these risks. In this way, economic openness can, counter-intuitively, strengthen anti-reform coalitions and create the conditions for its own demise – "limits to liberalization".

More information: @meiralkon and www.meiralkon.com