Assistant Professor

Pick Hall 428
773 834 7916
On leave 2018-19

Austin Carson is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Chicago. His main research focus is the politics of secrecy and publicity in International Relations. His book project, Facing Off and Saving Face, analyzes the logic of secrecy in external military interventions, showing how states shift to covert forms of intervention to control conflict escalation dynamics. An article from this project highlighting the secret side of the Korean War is forthcoming in the journal International Organization. Other research projects explore related themes including the signaling value of covert action, the damage to norm health from publicizing deviance in the international system, new views on secrecy from the sociology of Erving Goffman, and theories of limited war. Dr. Carson received his PhD from Ohio State, BA from Michigan State, and has held research fellowships at Princeton University's Niehaus Center for Globalization and Governance and George Washington University's Institute for Security and Conflict Studies.

Selected Publications:

  • "Facing Off and Saving Face: Covert Intervention and Escalation Management in the Korean War,” International Organization, Winter 2016.
  • “Political Irrelevance, Democracy, and the Limits of Militarized Conflict,” with Bear Braumoeller, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Volume 55, No. 2, April 2011, 292-320.