My research focuses on institutional and policy choices in democracies and how these choices affect democratic performance and sustainability. This interest extends across two subfields – comparative politics and public policy. The questions within each of these strands of research reflect fundamental problems that all democracies confront. The first strand of my research considers how democracies confront cooperation and coordination dilemmas in public policy delivery. The second strand of my research examines institutional choices that enhance the stability of democratic regimes.


2022. Jeffrey Staton, Christopher Reenock, and Jordan Holsinger. Can Courts be Bulwarks of Democracy? Judges and the Politics of Prudence. Cambridge University Press. Amazon

Can Courts be Bulwarks of Democracy?

2017. Charles Barrilleaux, Christopher Reenock and Mark Souva. Democratic Policymaking: An Analytic Approach. Cambridge University Press. Amazon


Refereed Publications

Forthcoming. Christopher Reenock, David Konisky, and Matthew Uttermark. “Chain of Command vs. Who’s in Command: Structure, Politics and Regulatory Outputs.” Policy Studies Journal.

  • Winner: 2020 Herbert Kaufman Award, best paper presented at APSA, Public Administration Section.

2021. David Konisky, Christopher Reenock, and Shannon Conley. “Environmental Injustice in Clean Water Act Enforcement: Racial and Income Disparities in Inspection Time.” 16(8) Environmental Research Letters.

2020. Michael Bernhard, Allen Hicken, Christopher Reenock, and Staffan I. Lindberg. “Parties, Civil Society, and the Deterrence of Democratic Defection.” Studies in Comparative International Development 55:1-26.

2018. “Policy Geography and Environmental Risk,” with David Konisky. Policy Studies Journal. 46(1):7-36. PDF

2015. David Konisky and Christopher Reenock. “Evaluating Fairness in Environmental Regulatory Enforcement.” In David Konisky (Eds.) A False Promise of Justice? Evaluating the Federal Government’s Response to Environmental Inequity. Cambridge: MIT Press. Amazon.

2013. David Konisky and Christopher Reenock. “Examining Sources of Regulatory Compliance Bias in Policy Implementation.” Journal of Politics. 75(2):506-519. PDF

  • Winner: 2013 Pi Sigma Alpha Award, best paper presented at SPSA.

2013. Christopher Reenock, Jeffrey Staton and Marius Radean. “Legal Institutions and Democratic Survival.” Journal of Politics. 75(2):491-505. PDF

2013. David Konisky and Christopher Reenock. “Case Selection in Public Management Research: Problems and Solutions.” Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory. 23(2):361-393. PDF

2010. Jeffrey Staton and Christopher Reenock. “Substitutable Protections: Socioeconomic Insulation and Credible Commitment Devices.” Political Research Quarterly 63(1):115-128. PDF

2009. Sarah Poggione and Christopher Reenock. “Political Insulation and Legislative Interventions: The Impact of Ex Ante Rule Review on Legislators’ Tactics of Bureaucratic Intervention.” State Politics and Policy Quarterly 9(4). PDF

2008. Christopher Reenock and Brian Gerber. “Information Exchange and Interest Group Enfranchisement through Agency Design.” Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory 18(3):415-440. PDF

  • Winner: 2008 Beryl Radin Award, best article published in JPART.

2007. Christopher Reenock, Michael Bernhard and David Sobek. “Regressive Socioeconomic Distribution and Democratic Survival.” International Studies Quarterly. 51(3):677-699. PDF

2004. Michael Berkman and Christopher Reenock. “Incremental Consolidation and Comprehensive Reorganization of American State Executive Branches.” American Journal of Political Science 48(4):796- 812. PDF

2004. Christopher Reenock and Sarah Poggione. “Bureaucratic Control by Design: Explaining State Legislators’ Willingness to Use Ex Ante Tactics in Air Pollution Control.” Legislative Studies Quarterly 29(3):383-406. PDF

2004. Michael Bernhard, Christopher Reenock and Timothy Nordstrom. “The Legacy of Western Overseas Colonialism on Democratic Survival.” International Studies Quarterly 48(1):225-250. PDF

2003. Michael Bernhard, Christopher Reenock and Timothy Nordstrom. “Economic Performance and Survival in New Democracies: Is There a Honeymoon Effect?” Comparative Political Studies 36(4):404- 431. PDF

2001. Michael Bernhard, Timothy Nordstrom and Christopher Reenock. “Economic Performance, Institutional Intermediation, and Democratic Survival.” The Journal of Politics 63(3):775-803. PDF

1999. Robert E. O’Connor, Brent Yarnal, Rob Neff, Richard Bord, Nancy Wiefek, Christopher Reenock, Robin Shudak, Christine L. Jocoy, Peter Pascale, and C. Gregory Knight. “Weather and Climate Extremes, Climate Change, and Planning: Views of Community Water System Managers in Pennsylvania’s Susquehanna River Basin.” Journal of the American Water Resources Association 35(6):1411-1419. PDF

Other Publications

1999. April Major and Christopher Reenock. 1999. “Building Computer Connectivity in the Legal Information Infrastructure of Bosnia.” Peaceworks: Journal of the United States Institute of Peace 32:18-21. PDF

In Development

“Inequity in Implementation: Environmental Enforcement Response Time” with David Konisky, Christopher Reenock, and Shannon Conley.

“Policy Devolution and Cooperation Dilemmas.” with Robert Carroll and David Konisky.

“Stai Fuori!: Immigration and The Italian Far Right” with Giulia Venturini.