Profile photo of Saeid Golkar
Saeid Golkar
Assistant Professor
Political Science and Public Service
  200 Pfeiffer Hall

I am  an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science and Public Service at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and concurrently, a non-resident Senior Fellow on Middle East Policy at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs (CCGA).


I received my Ph.D. in Political Science from Tehran University in 2008, and I have since worked with many prestigious American universities and thinktanks. After I moved to the United States in 2010, I held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law (CDDRL) at Stanford University. From 2011 to 2013, I was a  Policy Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Between 2014 to 2017, I taught and conducted research at Northwestern University in Chicago. I joined to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 2017.


My research focuses on international and comparative politics of authoritarian regimes with an emphasis on the Middle East and North Africa. My first book, Captive Society: The Basij Militia and Social Control in Post-revolutionary Iran (Columbia University Press, 2015), was awarded the Washington Institute silver medal prize. My second book “Domination and Resistance: Islamization of Universities and Students’ Resistance in Iran,” is currently under review at Syracuse University Press. The book explores Islamization of  Iranian universities, and discusses the state’s success and failure in transforming universities into ideological state apparatus.


In addition to these books, I have also published several peer-reviewed papers and policy papers on different topics on Middle East Politics. I have been published in prestigious journals such as Middle East Journal; Armed Forces & Society; Politics, Religion & Ideology; Middle East Policy; Journal of Contemporary Islam; Middle East Quarterly; and the Journal of Emerging Technologies & Society. I have frequently written for, been interviewed by, and have been quoted in major media outlets, such as The New York Times, Washington Post, The Guardian, Deutsche Welle, and Al Jazeera, and various television networks.