David W. Brady

David W. Brady
Professor Emeritus, Political Economy
+1 (650) 723-9702

Professor of Political Economy, Emeritus

Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and at SIEPR, and of Political Science, Emeritus
Academic Area:

Research Statement

Brady's research focuses on the American Congress, the party system, and public policy. He is at present working on a book on the electoral base of party parity in the United States and its effects on polarization and gridlock in the policy arena. He has published eight books and more than a hundred papers in journals and books. Among his most recent publications are Leadership and Growth (World Bank Publications, 2010) coedited with Michael Spence, Revolving Gridlock: Politics and Policy from Carter to Bush II (Westview Press, 2006), and Red and Blue Nation? Characteristics and Causes of America’s Polarized Politics with Pietro Nivola (Brookings Institution Press, 2007).


David Brady began his teaching career at Kansas State University in 1970, from there moved to Houston, Texas, where he taught at both the University of Houston and Rice University, where in 1981 he was named Autry Distinguished Professor of Social Science. In 1986 he moved to Stanford University with a joint appointment in the Graduate School of Business and Political Science. While at Stanford he has served as Associate Dean for Academic affairs in the GSB and as Vice Provost for Distance Learning at Stanford. He has twice been a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences and was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1987. He presently holds the Bowen H. and Janice Arthur McCoy Professorship in Ethics at the Business School and is Deputy Director of the Hoover Institution.

Professor Brady’s teaching focuses on non-market strategy for corporations and ethical applications in building quality companies. In addition to his Business School teaching he also teaches an undergraduate course in public policy.  He won the Dinkelspiel Award for service to undergraduates, the Richard Lyman Prize for service to alumni,the Bob Davies award and The Jaedicke silver cup from the GSB and the first Phi Beta Kappa Teaching Award given at Stanford. Brady has been on continuing appointment at Stanford University since 1987. He was associate dean from 1997 to 2001 at Stanford University; a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences from 1985 to 1986 and again in 2001–2; and the Autrey Professor at Rice University, 1980–87.

updated May 15,2014

His research focuses on the ties between elections, institutions (especially legislatures) and public policies. This work includes studies of American political history and comparative studies of Britain, Ireland, Korea and Japan. His most recent project is a project on political responses to the second great transformation of the global economy.

Academic Degrees

  • PhD, University of Iowa, 1970
  • MA, University of Iowa, 1967
  • BS, Western Illinois University, 1963

Academic Appointments

  • At Stanford since 1987
  • Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University, 2001-2002
  • Business School Trust Faculty Fellow, Stanford University, 1991-1992
  • Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University, 1985-1986
  • Autrey Professor, Rice University, 1980-1987
  • Associate Professor - Professor, University of Houston, 1972-1979
  • Assisstant Professor, Kansas State University, 1969-1972
  • C.I.C. Scholar, University of Michigan, 1964-1965

Awards and Honors

  • American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2000
  • Silver Apple Award Graduate School Business (Service to Alumni), 1997
  • Phi Beta Kappa Distinguished Teaching Award, Stanford, 1991


Journal Article


Book Chapters

Stanford Case Studies

Service to the Profession

  • Acting Vice Provost, Learning Technologies and Extended Education (LTEE), 1990-1991
  • Faculty Advisor, Public Management Program, 1998-present
  • Vice President, American Political Science Assn., 1995-present

In the Media

Insights by Stanford Business

School News