Alexander V. Hirsch

Professor of Political Science
B.A., Yale University, 2003; Ph.D., Stanford University, 2010. Associate Professor, Caltech, 2014-16; Professor, 2016-.


Political Economy; Political Science; Business, Economics, and Management


American Politics; Political Institutions; Congress; Bureaucracy; Political Economy; Formal Theory


Alexander Hirsch studies political institutions using game theory and quantitative methods. His main focus is on American political institutions. In particular, he's interested in how a learning-by-doing approach affects the efficacy of policy for legislative organization and bureaucratic management. He is also studying legislative specialization and organization, the effect of lobbying on forming legislative coalitions, and deterrence in international conflicts.

He was an assistant professor of politics and public affairs at Princeton University from 2011 to 2014. He received a Social Science Fellowship (2012-2013) from the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton. The American Political Science Association awarded him, along with his coauthors John Kastellec and Deborah Beim, the Best Law and Courts Paper in 2012. Along with Kenneth W. Shotts, he was recognized for having the Best Legislative Studies Paper by the American Political Science Association in 2008. He also received a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship in 2005.

Selected Awards: 
Institute for Advanced Study (Princeton), Social Science Fellowship, 2012-2013
Selected Publications 

Published and Forthcoming

"Whistleblowing and Compliance in the Judicial Hierarchy," with Deborah Beim and John Kastellec. American Journal of Political Science, forthcoming. Show Abstract

"Common Agency Lobbying over Coalitions and Policy," with David P. Baron - Economic Theory (2012) 49 (3): 639-81. Show Abstract

"Policy-Specific Information and Informal Agenda Power," with Kenneth W. Shotts. American Journal of Political Science (2011) 56 (1): 67-83. Show Abstract

"Theory Driven Bias in Ideal Point Estimates - A Monte Carlo Study" - Political Analysis (2011) 19 (1): 87-102 Matlab Programs Show Abstract

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