Larry Diamond

Senior Fellow
Awards and Honors:
Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel Award
Richard W. Lyman Award
Kenneth M. Cuthbertson Award

Larry Diamond is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, the Mosbacher Senior Fellow in Global Democracy at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI), and a Bass University Fellow in Undergraduate Education at Stanford University. He is also professor, by courtesy, of political science and sociology at Stanford. He leads the Hoover Institution’s programs on China’s Global Sharp Power and on Taiwan in the Indo-Pacific Region.  At FSI, he leads the Program on Arab Reform and Democracy, based at the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law, which he directed for more than six years.  He also coleads (with Eileen Donahoe) the Global Digital Policy Incubator based at FSI’s Cyber Policy Center. He is the founding coeditor of the Journal of Democracy and also serves as senior consultant at the International Forum for Democratic Studies of the National Endowment for Democracy. His research focuses on democratic trends and conditions around the world and on policies and reforms to defend and advance democracy. His latest edited book (with Orville Schell), China's Influence and American Interests (Hoover Press, 2019), urges a posture of constructive vigilance  toward China’s global projection of “sharp power,” which it sees as a rising threat to democratic norms and institutionsHe offers a massive open online course (MOOC) on Comparative Democratic Development through the edX platform and is now writing a textbook to accompany it. 

Diamond’s book, Ill Winds: Saving Democracy from Russian Rage, Chinese Ambition, and American Complacency, analyzes the challenges confronting liberal democracy in the United States and around the world at this potential “hinge in history” and offers an agenda for strengthening and defending democracy at home and abroad. A paperback edition with a new preface was released by Penguin in April 2020. His other books include: In Search of Democracy (2016)The Spirit of Democracy (2008), Developing Democracy: Toward Consolidation (1999),  Promoting Democracy in the 1990s (1995), and Class, Ethnicity, and Democracy in Nigeria (1989). He has also edited or coedited more than forty books on democratic development around the world, most recently Dynamics of Democracy in Taiwan: The Ma Ying-jeou Years.

During 2002–03, Diamond served as a consultant to the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and was a contributing author of its report, Foreign Aid in the National Interest. He has also advised and lectured to universities and think tanks around the world and to the World Bank, the United Nations, the State Department, and other governmental and nongovernmental agencies dealing with governance and development. During the first three months of 2004, Diamond served as a senior adviser on governance to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad. His 2005 book, Squandered Victory: The American Occupation and the Bungled Effort to Bring Democracy to Iraq, was one of the first books to critically analyze America's postwar engagement in Iraq.

Among Diamond’s other edited books are Democracy in Decline?; Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab WorldWill China Democratize?; and Liberation Technology: Social Media and the Struggle for Democracy, all edited with Marc F. Plattner; and Politics and Culture in Contemporary Iran, with Abbas Milani. With Juan J. Linz and Seymour Martin Lipset, he edited the series Democracy in Developing Countries, which helped to shape a new generation of comparative study of democratic development.

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Recent Commentary

Policy BriefsFeaturedFeatured

Larry Diamond On The United States And China: A Different Kind Of Superpower Competition

by Larry Diamondvia PolicyEd
Tuesday, May 3, 2022

China’s use of global sharp power has placed the United States in a very different kind of superpower competition than it was with the Soviet Union during the Cold War.


"We Have Entered A New Historical Era": Larry Diamond On The Future Of Democracy

by Larry Diamondvia Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
Monday, April 11, 2022

Speaking at the April 2022 meeting of the FSI Council, Larry Diamond offered his assessment of the present dangers to global democracy and the need to take decisive action in support of liberal values.


What China Wants

by Larry Diamond, Glenn Tiffertvia American Purpose
Monday, April 4, 2022

China desires nothing less than global hegemony. The challenge it poses to the cause of freedom requires a long-term, multifaceted approach.

Larry Diamond: Confronting Authoritarian Challengers—China and Russia
In the News

Taiwan Can Learn From Zelenskiy: Academic

quoting Larry Diamondvia Taipei Times
Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Taiwan should learn from Ukraine’s creative communications with the world in the wake of Russia’s invasion, Hoover Institution senior fellow Larry Diamond said on Monday.

Democrat's Donkey

Democrats, Want To Defend Democracy? Embrace What Is Possible.

by Larry Diamondvia The New York Times
Tuesday, January 25, 2022

[Subscription Required] Like many scholars of democracy, I have strongly supported both the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and the Freedom to Vote Act. Both are necessary (though not sufficient) to secure the most precious rights in any democracy — the right to vote and the right to have one’s vote counted fairly and accurately.


Larry Diamond: Democracy Is In Danger Worldwide. Here’s What To Do.

interview with Larry Diamondvia The Chicago Council on Global Affairs
Thursday, January 6, 2022

Hoover Institution fellow Larry Diamond discusses preventing the death of democracy in the US and around the world.


January 6 And The Paradoxes Of America’s Democracy Agenda

by Larry Diamondvia Foreign Affairs
Thursday, January 6, 2022

[Subscription Required] Why Protecting Liberalism Will Require a Dose of Populism

Analysis and Commentary

The Most Important Elections Of 2022

by Larry Diamondvia American Purpose
Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Winning three governorships could enable the Republican Party to rig the 2024 presidential election.

Analysis and Commentary

The Legacy Of The January 6 Insurrection

by Larry Diamond, Herbert Linvia Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
Wednesday, January 5, 2022

On the first anniversary of the attack on the U.S. Capitol, scholars from across FSI reflect on the ongoing ramifications the insurrection is having on America's domestic politics and international influence.

Policy BriefsAnalysis and Commentary

Larry Diamond Stresses The Need To Repel China’s Sharp Power

by Larry Diamondvia PolicyEd
Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Larry Diamond urges countries to be vigilant in recognizing and exposing China’s sharp power efforts.