University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Regine A. Spector

Regine Spector

Professional Title: 

Assistant Professor of Political Science

Service Role: 

  • Field Clerk - Comparative Politics


Thompson 516

Phone Number: 



Office Hours: 

For Fall 2017 coming soon


Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley


I study how everyday people and political elites understand and respond to challenging sociopolitical contexts characterized by weak rule-of-law institutions. I engage with literature in comparative politics, political economy, post-Soviet studies and when relevant history, geography, and anthropology, to better understand the creative, contentious, and politically fraught processes that undergird the creation of new market economies.  My first book, Order at the Bazaar: Power and Trade in Central Asia, is forthcoming from Cornell University Press in 2017. The book examines the bottom-up creation and institutionalization of local marketplace orders in Kyrgyzstan.  Among other topics, I have also published articles on the politically contested future of bazaars in Almaty, Kazakhstan and the recomposition of apparel manufacturing in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, in Post-Soviet Affairs, Problems of Post-Communism, and Central Asian Survey. Over the years, I have received numerous grants, including a Title-VIII funded dissertation field research grant and a research grant from UMass Amherst’s School of Behavioral Sciences. I teach a 200-level and 300-level undergraduate courses in comparative political economy and Central Asian politics. At the graduate level, I teach political economy courses, including the political economy of development. As of 2016, I have been co-organizing the Eurasia panels at the annual Association for the Study of Nationalities (ASN) held annually at Columbia University, and regularly attend other annual conferences such as APSA (American Political Science Association), ISA (International Studies Association), ASEEES (Association for the Study of East European and Eurasian Studies), and CESS (Central Eurasian Studies Society). 

Area of Study: 

  • Comparative politics


  • Political Science