Sarah Croco is an associate professor in the Department of Government and Politics and a faculty associate at the Center for International Development and Conflict Management at the University of Maryland. She is also the Political Methodology field chair and the Kekst Family Endowed Research Fellow for the 2020-2021 academic year.  She received her Ph.D. in political science from the University of Michigan in 2008. Her research interests include: the process by which citizens assign leaders responsibility for international wars; the value of policy consistency in elections; and the consequences for leaders when they lie.

Her book is Peace at What Price?: Leader Culpablity, Domestic Politics, and War Termination. Her dissertation won the 2009 Best Dissertation Prize from the Committee for the Analysis of Military Operations and Strategy. She has also won numerous teaching awards. Her work has appeared in The American Political Science Review, The American Journal of Political Science, The Journal of Politics, International Studies Quarterly, and World Politics, among others.


The centerpiece of the class (GVPT 429A) is a pair of surveys that the students and I designed together. We will have the surveys in the field before and after the election. The questions would center on issues we discuss in class, with a particular emphasis on the role of democratic norms. Putting the survey in the field multiple times will allow us to see how Americans’ feelings about the robustness of democratic norms changes as the country moves through an election. Do people lose faith in democracy if their candidate loses? When do people believe rumors that an election was unfair? How do election outcomes shape citizens’ confidence in institutions? 

Areas of Interest

  • International War
  • Wartime Public Opinion
  • Flip-Flopping
  • Research Methods

Current Students

Former Students

Sarah Croco
scroco [at]