Office of External Communications

Houston, TX 77204-5017 Fax: 713.743.8199

February 12, 2007

Contact: Angie Joe
713.743.8153 (office)
713.617.7138 (pager)


How Latin American dictatorships stack up economically against their democratic counterparts will be the focus of the University of Houston Center for Public Policy (CPP) inaugural speaker series.

William “Bill” Keech, professor emeritus of political economy at Carnegie Mellon University, is the first speaker. Keech’s research interests are the political economy, and the politics and history of macroeconomic policy in democracies and dictatorships. His lectures will be held at UH’s University Center Underground, Pacific Room 90, and are free and open to the public.

As part of the new series, CPP invites scholars who are working on a book-length project to present an in-depth series of lectures during their stay. During the fall and spring semesters, speakers from diverse disciplinary areas, such as political science, engineering, sociology and business, will present recent research findings.

“The idea of the extended visit is to allow students and guests to get a deeper understanding of issues that cannot be achieved with a brief one-day presentation and discussion,” said CPP Director Jim Granato. “Professor Keech is an ideal candidate to kick off the series because of his national reputation for being an innovator in applying an interdisciplinary approach to research questions.”

Scheduled topics include:

  • “Democracy v. Dictatorship: Is There a Relation Between Regime Type and Economic Performance?” at 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, Feb. 14.
  • “Caricaturing Democracies and Dictatorships: The Cases of Chile and Argentina” at 10:30 a.m., Thursday, Feb. 15.
  • “Some Emerging Patterns,” an examination of the experiences of Brazil and Mexico, two countries with starkly different political histories but similar economic patterns, at 10:30 a.m., Friday, Feb. 16.

For more information about the series, contact Jim Granato at (713) 743-3887 or

WHAT: Center for Public Policy Speaker Series
WHO: William “Bill” Keech, professor of political economy at Carnegie Mellon University
WHEN: 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, Feb. 14; 10:30 a.m., Thursday, Feb. 15; 10:30 a.m., Friday, Feb. 16
WHERE: University Center Underground, Pacific Room 90
University of Houston – Main Campus
For parking information, visit

For more information about UH visit the university’s ‘Newsroom’ at