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College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Department of Political Science

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Elizabeth Sperber

  • Elizabeth Sperber

    Elizabeth Sperber

Assistant Professor
Sturm Hall, Room 471
Phone: 303-871-2138
Email: [email protected]


Areas of expertise/research interests

  • Christianity and African politics
  • democracy and democratic erosion
  • political economy of development
  • global social policy
  • mixed methods research design

Professional biography

Elizabeth Sperber is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Denver. She specializes in comparative politics with regional expertise in sub-Saharan Africa. Professor Sperber's book manuscript examines how African political parties and the role of religious institutions in struggles for democratization affected the growth and politicization of new Christian movements (e.g., Pentecostalism) in sub-Saharan Africa after the Cold War.

At both Columbia and Brown University, Professor Sperber received awards for her work. She also served as a Mellon Graduate Fellow at the Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics at Columbia University, and has published work in journals such as Politics and Religion, the International Journal of Social Policy, the American Journal of Public Health, and the Journal of International Affairs, among others. Her primary research experience is in Uganda, Zambia, and South Africa.

At DU, Professor Sperber has taught courses on identity and politics, democratic erosion, research methods, and the political economy of development.


Postdoctoral Fellow, McSilver Institute of Poverty Policy and Research and the Department of Politics, New York University
PhD, MPhil, MA, Political Science, Columbia University
BA, (with Highest Honors) Brown University