TIER Fellow, 2018

University at Albany, SUNY

Matt’s research examines institutional change in Latin America and the Caribbean — primarily in the justice and security sectors — as well as violence and insecurity across the Americas. Matt’s teachingincludes related courses on Justice Reform in Latin America, Comparative Criminal Procedure, and Introduction to Public Law, as well as research methods at undergraduate and graduate levels, including advanced methods courses in spatial analysis and network analysis. In his methods teaching, Matt emphasizes the normative and practical importance of free, open-source tools, including R, Python, and LaTeX. He teaches a core graduate course in Stata due to coordination with other core courses, so he is comfortable moving back and forth between R and Stata and conveys to students the value of being able to work in different software environments for the sake of working with different collaborators and reaching varied audiences.

Prior to joining UAlbany in 2012, Matt was a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies at the University of California, San Diego (2009-2010), an assistant professor at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth (2010-2011), and a postdoctoral fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at the University of Notre Dame (2011-2012). He holds a Ph.D. in political science and a law degree (J.D.), both from the University of New Mexico, and a B.A. from Pomona College.

AS A TIER FELLOW... Matt plans to develop course materials that put principles of workflow and research transparency into practice with free, open-source tools. He has already begun this work but will continue developing materials in a more systematic fashion and guided by the general principles of the TIER protocol. One of his main goals is to develop an open introductory statistics text that is problem-based rather than skill-based, and that is written entirely in dynamic documents that can be run independently or compiled into either electronic or print format. The final product will include text, data, and code that are all open, and that will be broadly compatible with a wide range of introductory courses and teaching platforms. He will be experimenting with notebooks in R and Jupyter in order to see which environment is most conducive to the project.