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Reo Matsuzaki
Assistant Professor of Political Science
Phone: (860) 297-5320 Office Location: Downes Memorial 102B
Send e-mail to Reo Matsuzaki
Trinity College faculty member since 2013 View office hours for Spring 2014
General ProfileTeachingResearchPublications/PresentationsHonors/Awards
Degrees:
Ph.D., Mass. Institute of Technology (2011)
B.S., Georgetown Univ. (2003)

Reo Matsuzaki is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science. His research and teaching interests lie at the intersection of comparative politics and history of East Asia, with a focus on colonialism and its legacies. His current book project, based on several years of archival research in multiple countries, examines variation in institution-building outcomes within colonial occupations, particularly in the areas of police and education. At the heart of his investigation is a comparison of two historic cases of state-building—the Japanese occupation of Taiwan (1895-1945) and the U.S. occupation of the Philippines (1898-1942)—which resulted in contrasting state-building outcomes despite the existence of comparable starting conditions. Prior to coming to Trinity, Matsuzaki was a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law, where he managed a project examining the issue of governance in China.

As in his research, the comparative method is the underlying approach of Matsuzaki’s courses. Students will discuss why various historical events occurred as they did, and whether alternative outcomes were possible, by comparing similar as well as dissimilar cases. Through classroom discussion, presentations, and written assignments, students will learn how to dissect social scientific arguments, challenge existing accounts of historical interpretation, and evaluate the merits of theoretically founded policy prescriptions.