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Research Interests

Dr Aidt's research areas are Public Choice and Political Economics. His work focuses on four main themes: The causes and consequences of democratization; development and corruption; political business cycles; and the political economy of environmental policy.


Ph.D. from the University of Aarhus (1998); Editor of the European Journal of Political Economy; on the editorial board of Public Choice and Constitutional Political Economy; awarded the Wicksell Prize (1999) by the European Public Choice Society and the Pilkington Prize (2007) for excellence in teaching by the University of Cambridge. Past-president of the European Public Choice Society (2013-15) and a current member of the Syndicate of the Cambridge University Press. Director of Studies in Economics at Jesus College since 1998.

Recent Publications

Published Papers

Aidt, T. S., Albornoz, F. and Hauk, E. Foreign Influence and Domestic Policy, Journal of Economic Literature vol 59 no. 2 (2021) pp. 426-487
Aidt, T. S. and Leon, G. The Interaction of Structural Factors and Diffusion in Social Unrest: Evidence from the Swing Riots, British Journal of Political Science (2021) pp. 1-17
Aidt, T. S., Leon, G. and Max Satchell The Social Dynamics of Collective Action: Evidence from the Diffusion of the Swing Riots, The Journal of Politics, accepted (2020)
Aidt, T. S. Review of Forging the Franchise: The Political Origins of the Women's Vote, Journal of Economic Literature, forthcoming (2020)
Aidt, T. S., Hillman, A. and Liu, Q. Who takes bribes and how much? Evidence from the China Corruption Conviction Databank, World Development vol 133 no. 104985 (2020)
Aidt, T., Grey, F. and Savu, A. The Meaningful Votes: Voting on Brexit in the British House of Commons, Public Choice vol 186 (2020) pp. 587–617
Aidt, T. S., Asatryan, Z., Badalyan, L. and Heinemann, F. Vote Buying or (Political) Business (Cycles) as Usual?, Review of Economics and Statistics vol 102 no. 3 (2020) pp. 409-425
Aidt, T. S. and Franck, R. What motivates and oligarchic elite to democratize? Evidence from the roll call vote on the Great Reform Act of 1832, Journal of Economic History vol 79(3) (2019) pp. 773-825

Cambridge Working Papers in Economics

Aidt, T., Winer, S., Zhang, P. Franchise extension and fiscal structure in the United Kingdom 1820-1913: A new test of the Redistribution Hypothesis, (2020) CWPE2008
Aidt, T., Grey, F., Savu, A. The Three Meaningful Votes: Voting on Brexit in the British House of Commons, (2019) CWPE1979
Aidt, T., Rauh, C. The Rise of the “No Party” in England, (2019) CWPE1977
Aidt, T. S., Albornoz, F. and Hauk, E. Foreign in influence and domestic policy: A survey, (2019) CWPE1928
Aidt, T. S., Leon, G. and Satchell, M. The Social Dynamics of Collective Action: Evidence from the Captain Swing Riots, 1830-31, (2017) CWPE1751

Chapter in Book

Aidt, T.S. Corruption, (2018) in the book: Oxford handbook of public choice - Oxford University Press
Aidt, T.S. and Leon, G. The coup: competition for office in authoritarian regimes, (2018) in the book: Oxford handbook of public choice - Oxford University Press
Aidt, T. S. Political economy of instrument choice, (2013) in the book: Encyclopedia of energy, natural resource, and environmental economics - Elsevier Science

Research Activities

Workshop on the Political Economy of Wars and Political Transitions
The Faculty of Economics, Brtish Academy, Université libre de Bruxelles and University of Paris-Saclay are sponsoring a workshop on the Political Economy of Wars and Political Transitions. The event, organised by Dr. Toke Aidt, Dr. Jean Lacroix and Prof. Pierre-Guillaume Méon, will be held online, on the 1st & 2nd September 2021. See the event page for details.
Event Date - Wednesday 1st September 2021 - Thursday 2nd September 2021

New Keynes Fund PhD Students Small Awards Scheme
The Keynes Fund at the Faculty of Economics has appended another funding stream for PhD students to apply for small grants outside the main funding process.
Published on - Wednesday 12th May 2021

The Keynes Fund: Research into an Inefficient Market
Dr Toke Aidt explains how the Keynes Fund operates. It has been responsible for supporting many researchers who have provided fascinating insights into economics and the way markets work.
Published on - Wednesday 24th March 2021

Research Assistance for Education Project
We are seeking to hire a Research Assistant to help with a project that designs and implements an innovative teaching and learning methodology for the Economics Tripos.
Published on - Wednesday 3rd February 2021

Research Assistant
Dr TS Aidt is seeking a research assistance to work up to 10 hours per week (for a total of 200 hours) on data collection related to a research project on sanitation and mortality in the 19th century in English cities.
Published on - Wednesday 20th January 2021

Research Grants

Democratic purges in post-World War II France: Was it all about separating the wheat from the chaff? (British Academy)
Riots And The Great Reform Act Of 1832 (British Academy)
International dimension of political regime dynamics (Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC))
Voting Rights And Public Policy (Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC))
Economic Policy and Political Myopia (Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC))

Keynes Fund Affiliation & Sponsored Projects

Director of the Keynes Fund

Aidt, T., Political Representation, Market Failure and Public Policy: A Long-run Study of the United Kingdom (JHOA)
Aidt, T., Shaw-Taylor, L. and Davenport, R., Market Failures and State Successes in Public Health and Highways 1830-1912 (JHOM)
Shvets, J. and Aidt, T., Private Provision of Public Goods and Group Dynamics: The Case of COVID-19 Asymptomatic Testing (JHVE)
Krieger, T. and Aidt, T., Social Identity and Public Policy (JHVG)


PIIB Paper 1 - Michaelmas - Second Best Theory
PIIB Paper 1 - Lent - Social cost benefit and analysis
PIIB Paper 5 - Michaelmas - General-interest politics - Voting and elections
PIIB Paper 5 - Michaelmas - Special-interest politics: Bargaining, Lobbying & Corruption
PIIB Paper 5 - Lent - Institutions & Public Policy
PIIB Paper 7 - Lent - Environmental Regulation
E100 - Microeconomics

PhD Students


Alexandru Savu
PhD Title: Political causes of reform ineffectiveness in non-advanced economies
Research: Empirical Political and Development Economics


Emile Marin
PhD Title: The Hegemon's Dilemma : Intertemporal terms of trade manipulation and expenditure-switching.
Rebecca Heath
PhD Title:
Research: Image Concerns and Online Social Networks
Sarah Nelson
Affiliation: (Department of Engineering): Material demand reduction.
Research: Environmental Economics and Political Economy
Sam van Noort
Affiliation: Centre of Development Studies (CDS)
Research: Economic Development in Comparative Perspective

Dr Toke Aidt

University Reader
Director of the Keynes Fund

Research Group:
Empirical Microeconomics
Economic History

Expertise: Corruption

CV: Curriculum Vitae

Contact Details
Room: 21
Office Hours: Mondays 12-1pm
College: Fellow of Jesus College