Fiona Shen-Bayh is an Assistant Professor of Government & Politics with a joint appointment at the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland. She studies the politics of authoritarian regimes, specifically the legal and judicial instruments of power. Her book Undue Process (Cambridge University Press, Studies in Law and Society Series) examines these themes in the context of postcolonial Africa. In 2023, it won the Theodore J. Lowri First Book Award, the Giovanni Sartori Book Award, and the Juan Linz Best Book Prize in the Comparative Study of Democracy & Autocracy.

Her research has been published or is forthcoming in the American Political Science Review, The Journal of Politics, World Politics, Cambridge University Press, and Oxford University Press. She has received research support from the National Science Foundation, the Institute of International Studies, and the Global Research Institute. She is also a research affiliate of the Centre on Law and Social Transformations at the University of Bergen.

She earned her PhD in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley and her BA in Economics from Vassar College. She was previously a Weiser Center for Emerging Democracies postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan.



  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    University of California, Berkeley
  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    Vassar College
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