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 and at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies. For more than six years, he directed FSI’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law, where he now leads its Program on Arab Reform and Democracy and its Global Digital Policy Incubator. 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 forthcoming book, Ill Winds:  Saving Democracy from Russian Rage, Chinese Ambition, and American Complacency, analyzes the challenges confronting liberal democracy in the U.S. and around the world at this potential “hinge in history,” and offers an agenda for strengthening and defending democracy at home and abroad. He is now writing a textbook and preparing a massive open online course (MOOC) on democratic development. Diamond’s 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. He directed the Stanford Program on Democracy in Taiwan for more than ten years and has been a regular visitor to Taiwan since 1995.

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 edited books are Democracy in Decline?; Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab World; Will 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.

Diamond writes a monthly column for The American Interest and frequently consults on policies and programs to promote democracy.

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Recent Commentary

In the News

The Trump Musical: ‘Anything Goes’

quoting Larry Diamondvia The New York Times
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Leaders around the world have learned that they can do as they wish without the U.S. calling them out.

In the News

The Growing Signs Of The Fragility And Resilience Of Liberal Democracy

quoting Larry Diamondvia International Centre For Defence And Security
Friday, March 1, 2019

EU foreign policy has a role in protecting and promoting democracy and human rights at a global level. As we celebrate the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, it would be fitting to assess the current state of liberal democracy on a global level in order to understand in what direction the world is evolving.

In the News

Utah Against Health Insurance

quoting Larry Diamondvia The New York Times
Friday, February 22, 2019

The state’s politicians have rejected the will of the voters and taken coverage from 60,000 Utahns.

In the News

Hoover Receives Pushback At Panel On Chinese Influence On US Institutions

featuring Hoover Institution, Larry Diamondvia Stanford Daily
Friday, February 15, 2019

The authors of a November 2018 report by the Hoover Institution that called for “constructive vigilance” against Chinese influence on U.S. institutions faced an oftentimes critical, predominantly Chinese audience in a panel discussion on their findings, which ranged from Chinese propaganda in U.S. media to illicit technology transfer.

In the News

Does Technology Favor Tyranny?

quoting Timothy Garton Ash, Michael R. Auslin, Larry Diamond, Niall Fergusonvia Foreign Affairs
Tuesday, February 12, 2019

We at Foreign Affairs have recently published a number of pieces dealing with technology and authoritarianism. To complement these articles, we decided to ask a broad pool of experts for their take.


Larry Diamond: How Chinese Sharp Power Takes Aim At American Democracy

interview with Larry Diamondvia War on the Rocks
Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Larry Diamond breaks down Beijing’s efforts to direct “sharp power” against democratic institutions in the United States. The key battleground appears to be American educational institutions and China’s main instrument is its United Front Work Department, a critical part of the Communist Party apparatus that aims to enlist, coerce, and induce support for the party around the world.

In the News

Today’s Threats To Global Democracy Are Coming From Democracies Themselves

quoting Larry Diamondvia Slate
Monday, February 4, 2019

When it comes to the threats to global democracy, the call is coming from inside the house. U.S.-based NGO Freedom House’s annual Freedom in the World report, released Monday, found that for the 13th straight year, global freedom has declined. (The report scores countries on 25 indicators—factors like rule of law and freedom of the press—and categorizes them as “free,” “partly free,” or “not free.”) 


Larry Diamond: Chinese Influence, American Interests

interview with Larry Diamondvia The Diplomat
Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Larry Diamond discusses the trajectory of Chinese influence in US technology innovation and whether Chinese influence is a threat to US democracy.

Analysis and Commentary

A Hinge In History?

by Larry Diamondvia The American Interest
Friday, January 18, 2019

We live in perilous times. A domestic constitutional crisis that looks ever-more likely would unfold in a global context of profound turbulence and instability.


China Gets Its Message To Americans But Doesn’t Want To Reciprocate

by Orville Schell, Larry Diamondvia The Wall Street Journal
Friday, December 21, 2018

[Subscription Required] President Donald Trump insists that China has been ripping off America for decades, but even if the two countries manage to negotiate—and honor—new terms for trade, basic reciprocity will still be sorely lacking elsewhere in the relationship and will continue to create tensions.