Associate Professor of Law, Political Science and Public Policy
Ph.D., Political Science,
University of California, Berkeley
J.D., Harvard Law School
M.A.L.D., The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.
Gould School of Law
Los Angeles, California 90089-0071
Abby Wood joined USC Gould School of Law in spring 2014 as assistant professor of law, political science, and public policy. Her research is at the intersection of law and politics, with current papers on government transparency, anti-corruption initiatives, and campaign finance. Most of her research uses large datasets and sophisticated quantitative analysis to show causal effects of institutional changes on human behavior. Wood teaches administrative law, campaign finance, and analytical methods for lawyers. She has taught on a variety of subjects, including international human rights law, constitutional law, quantitative methods for political science, and comparative politics.
Before joining USC Gould, Wood clerked for the Honorable John T. Noonan, judge of the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. She also has consulted on good governance projects in association with USAID, World Bank, National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, and UNDP.
Wood graduated summa cum laude from Austin College and earned her JD from Harvard Law School, where she was a senior editor of the Harvard International Law Journal. Concurrent with her law degree, Wood completed a MA in Law and Diplomacy, with a specific focus in development economics, at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, at Tufts University. In 2012, Wood earned a PhD in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley.
Works in Progress
- “Mind the (Participation) Gap: Vouchers, Voting, and Visibility” (with Christopher Elmendorf and Douglas Spencer).
- “Show Me the Money: ‘Dark Money’ and the Informational Benefit of Campaign Finance Disclosure” – (SSRN)
- “Campaign Finance Transparency Affects Legislative Candidate Performance at the Polls” (with Christian Grose).
- “Bureaucratic Agency Problems and Legislative Oversight” (with Sean Gailmard and Janna Rezaee).
Articles and Book Chapters
- “Elite Political Ignorance: Law, Data, and the Representation of (Mis)Perceived Electorates” (with Christopher S. Elmendorf). UC Davis Law Review 52, no. 2 (forthcoming) – (SSRN)
- “Pedagogical Value of Polling Place Observation By Students” (with Chris Mann, et al.). PS: Political Science & Politics (forthcoming).
- “Campaign Finance Disclosure.” Annual Review of Law and Social Science (forthcoming 2018).
- “Fool Me Once: Regulating ‘Fake News’ and other Online Advertising” (with Ann M. Ravel and Irina Dykhne). Southern California Law Review 91, no. 6 (forthcoming 2018). – (SSRN)
- “Agency Performance Challenges and Agency Politicization” (with David E. Lewis). Journal of Public Administration, Research, and Theory 27 (2017): 581 . – (www) – (SSRN)
- “Twombly and Iqbal at the State Level” (with Roger M. Michalski). Journal of Empirical Legal Studies 14, no. 2 (2017): 424. – (SSRN) – (www)
- “In the Shadows of Sunlight: The Effects of Transparency on State Political Campaigns” (with Douglas M. Spencer). Election Law Journal 15, no. 4 (2016): 302. – (SSRN) – (www)
- “Caught in the Act but not Punished: On Elite Rule of Law and Deterrence” (with Francesca R. Jensenius). Penn State Journal of International Law & Policy 4, no. 2 (2016): 686 (peer reviewed). – (SSRN) – (Hein)
- “Citizens United, States Divided: An Empirical Analysis of Independent Political Spending”, with Douglas Spencer. Indiana Law Journal 89 (2014): 315. – (SSRN) – (Hein) – (www)
- “Charm and Punishment: How the Philippines’ Leading Man Became Its Most Famous Prisoner.” In Prosecuting Heads of State, edited by Ellen Lutz and Caitlin Reiger. Cambridge University Press, 2009. – (www)