H. Zeynep Bulutgil is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Political Science at University College London. Her general research interests focus on political violence, the relationship between religious and political institutions, as well as inequality and ethnic politics. Her first research project explored the conditions and processes that lead to (or prevent) ethnic cleansing. Her book, The Roots of Ethnic Cleansing in Europe (Cambridge University Press, 2016; 2018) has been chosen as the Winner of the 2017 Best Book Award in the European Politics and Society Section of APSA. She has also published articles on ethnic cleansing, political violence, social cleavages, and political mobilization in International Security, Journal of Peace Research, Journal of Global Security Studies (forthcoming), Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties (forthcoming), and Nationalities Papers. Her second and more recent project, The Origins of Legal Secularization, explores the conditions under which the legal structures of countries become divorced from religious actors and regulations. To explore this question, she has compiled a historical-cross-national dataset on institutional secularization that covers the post-1850 period. Her work-in-progress uses this dataset along with historical case studies from Europe and the Middle East to analyze the conditions under which countries adopt secular legal systems. She has been awarded a British Academy Mid-Career Fellowship (2019-2020) to complete this book project. Additionally, she has also been working on a series of articles (co-authored with Neeraj Prasad) that explore the relationship between economic inequality within and between ethnic groups and political mobilization in India.
Her research has been supported by grants or fellowships from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University, the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School, the Program on Order, Conflict, and Violence at the Yale Center for International and Area Studies, and the National Science Foundation. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. She has previously taught at Tufts University. She is also an Associate Editor at Nationalities Papers.