Alasdair S. Roberts



Dr. Roberts is a Professor of Public Affairs at the Truman School of Public Affairs at the University of Missouri. He is also a Professor (by courtesy) of Law and an adjunct professor of Political Science.

Dr. Roberts writes on problems of public administration, law and public policy.  His next book, Four Crises of American Democracy, was published by Oxford University Press in January 2017.  His previous books include The End of Protest: How Free Market Capitalism Learned to Control Dissent (Cornell University Press, 2013); America’s First Great Depression: Economic Crisis and Political Disorder After the Panic of 1837 (Cornell University Press, 2012), which will be published in Chinese in 2016; The Logic of Discipline: Global Capitalism and the Architecture of Government (Oxford University Press, 2010), which will be published in Spanish in 2016; The Collapse of Fortress Bush: The Crisis of Authority in American Government (New York University Press, 2008); and Blacked Out: Government Secrecy in the Information Age (Cambridge University Press, 2006). He has received several book awards. In 2014, he received Canada’s Grace-Pepin Award for his research on open government.

Professor Roberts was elected as a fellow of the US National Academy of Public Administration in 2007. He is also an Honorary Senior Research Fellow of the School of Public Policy, University College London. He is co-editor of the journal Governance.

A Canadian citizen, Professor Roberts received a JD from the University of Toronto in 1984, a Master’s degree in Public Policy from Harvard University in 1986, and a Ph.D. in Public Policy from Harvard University in 1994. He was a member of the public administration faculty of Queen’s University in Canada from 1990 to 2001, and the Maxwell School at Syracuse University from 2001 to 2008. He was the Jerome L. Rappaport Professor of Law and Public Policy at Suffolk University from 2008 to 2014.


  • PhD from Harvard University