Western University Political ScienceFaculty of Social Science

Bruce Morrison

Assistant Professor


Ph.D., Harvard University
Telephone: 519.661.2111 ext. 84937
E-mail: bmorris2@uwo.ca
Office: Social Sciences Centre 4137

Research Interests

 Professor Morrison focuses his research efforts primarily on democratization and state formation, especially in association with the historical Western European cases, but with a view to broader comparisons. He is also working on transnational democracy, social movements, and political corruption.

Current Research Projects

1. Democracy By Default

This book project charts and explains the similarities and differences between the British and French democratic trajectories, tying them primarily to the processes of state reform at the turn of the nineteenth century and the associated clash of traditional and modern idea sets.

2. Democracy as Institutional Change

This article sets limits to the role of both pressure from below and partisan competition in episodes of democratization. It reconsiders the British Second Reform Act of 1867 in such a way as to demonstrate the influence of the institutional features of the British state, including those associated with the electoral system itself, and also of the lingering constitutionalist idiom. If elites under the challenge of democratizing pressures acted so as to defend their interests, they did so in a particular institutional context, and based on a particular understanding of what it was they were trying to preserve.

3. Parliaments and Patrimonialism

This article takes up the issue of the importance of representative bodies in combating and eliminating political corruption. It points to the difficulty of establishing an independent role for parliaments given their historical role in constituting the national institutional order. The attempt is made to broaden the frame of reference in order to explore the developing relationship between parliaments and patrimonial administrative arrangements, particulalry in Britain and France beginning in the early modern period.

Selected Publications


Refereed Journal Articles

Book Chapters

Recent Conference Presentations

Awards and Distinctions