UCL Institute of the Americas


Nadia Hilliard

Dr Nadia Hilliard

Lecturer in US Politics

Careers Liaison Tutor

Nadia Hillard


Nadia is a Lecturer in US Studies at the Institute of the Americas.  Originally from Virginia, she completed her undergraduate studies in Comparative Literature (Spanish) at the University of Chicago and, later, in Philosophy at the University of Paris IV – Sorbonne.  In her postgraduate work, she focused initially on comparative politics (MPhil), and later on US politics, finishing her DPhil at the University of Oxford in 2015.  Most recently, she has held post-doctoral positions at Balliol College, Oxford as a Junior Research Fellow, and at City, University of London as a Post-doctoral Research Associate.  Nadia has also worked as a consultant for various research organizations, including UNESCO and the OECD.

Research Summary

Nadia’s current research focuses on the themes of accountability and state building in the American political development (APD) tradition.  She is currently working on a book project on the institutionalisation of accountability mechanisms in the US and the development of a ‘monitory state’.  Placed in the literature on the changing nature of the state and specifically state building in the US, the project assesses the growing role of independent oversight bodies as integral to democratic legitimacy.  Parallel to this, she researches the role of crisis and emergency in US state building. Her previous work has explored comparative immigration and immigrant integration policies in Western Europe and North America; theoretical models of institutional change; the history of transparency in the US; and accountability following economic crisis. 

Teaching Summary


AMER0039 Introduction to Politics

Post Graduate Taught:

AMER0044 American Political Development

AMER0045 States of Exception

Research Supervision:

I welcome research proposals from prospective postgraduate students working on topics related to any area of my current and previous research, including public accountability, crisis and emergency governance, bureaucratic development, immigration, and state building in the US context.

Current supervision:

Yifei Li, ''A carefully constructed unintended consequence: Development of Medicare as a patchwork system, 1965-1997'' (second supervisor).



  • The Accountability State: U.S. Federal Inspectors General and the Pursuit of Democratic Integrity (Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2017)


  • “Monitoring the U.S. Executive Branch Inside and Out: The Freedom of Information Act, Inspectors General, and the Paradoxes of Transparency,” in David Pozen and Michael Schudson, eds., Troubling Transparency: The Freedom of Information Act and Beyond (New York: Columbia University Press, forthcoming 2018).  

Media appearances

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