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Jacob N. Shapiro

Jacob N. Shapiro is professor of politics and international affairs at Princeton University and directs the Empirical Studies of Conflict Project, a multi-university consortium that compiles and analyzes micro-level conflict data and other information on politically motivated violence in countries around the world. He studies conflict, economic and political development, and security policy. He is author of The Terrorist’s Dilemma: Managing Violent Covert Organizations and co-author of Small Wars, Big Data: The Information Revolution in Modern Conflict. His research has been published in broad range of academic and policy journals as well as a number of edited volumes. He has conducted field research and large-scale policy evaluations in Afghanistan, Colombia, India, and Pakistan.

Shapiro received the 2016 Karl Deutsch Award from the International Studies Association, given to a scholar younger than 40 or within 10 years of earning a PhD who has made the most significant contribution to the study of international relations. He is an associate editor of Journal of Conflict Resolution, World Politics, and Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, a faculty fellow of the Association for Analytic Learning about Islam and Muslim Societies, a research fellow at the Center for Economic Research in Pakistan, and an associate fellow of the Institute of Development and Economic Alternatives.

Prior to graduate school Shapiro served in the United States Navy. He received his PhD in political science and MA in economics from Stanford University. 

Recent Publications

The Disinformation Threat—and What to Do About It (Podcast)
May 12, 2021 | Lindsay Morgan interviews Jacob Shapiro
Manipulation and deception have always been a part of politics. But misinformation and disinformation are flourishing in the digital age, with social media, and new technologies like artificial intelligence, making fake content easier to create and disseminate. In this interview, IGCC expert Jacob Shapiro, a professor of politics and international affairs at Princeton University and co-director of IGCC’s new research initiative on disinformation, talks about what disinformation is, who’s doing it and why, and what can be done about it.

COVID-19 Disinformation is on the Rise: Here’s What We Know
April 27, 2020 | By Jacob Shapiro, IGCC Affiliated Researcher
The spread of COVID-19 is being mirrored online by widely-circulated disinformation about the virus. In analysis for Political Violence At A Glance, an IGCC-supported online magazine dedicated to political violence and its alternatives, researchers with the Empirical Studies of Conflict Project shed light on the type of disinformation circulating, sources, and motives.

Countering Online Foreign Influence in 2020 Elections
Jan. 23, 2020 | By Jacob Shapiro, IGCC Affiliated Researcher
Social media has proved an essential tool for catalyzing political activism and social change around the world. Yet, the very features that make it so useful to those with greater-good intentions—scalability, mobility and low costs to entry—also make it prone to manipulation by malign actors who use it to spread disinformation and divisive rhetoric. 

  • political violence
  • economic and political development
  • security policy
Development and Conflict Research