Mala Htun


Photo: Mala Htun
Curriculum vitae
SSCO 2041
Drop In Hours: 
SP24: by appointment only
PhD, Harvard University, 2000

Research Area/s:

Comparative Politics



Mala Htun is a Professor of Political Science at the University of New Mexico. She works on comparative politics, women's rights, social inequalities, and strategies to promote inclusive organizational climates in STEM. Htun is the author of three books, most recently The Logics of Gender Justice: State Action on Women's Rights around the World, co-authored with Laurel Weldon (Cambridge Press, 2018). She has been Vice President of APSA, served as the chair of the Committee on the Status of Women in the Profession, and co-chaired the Presidential Task Force on Women's Advancement. She has been an Andrew Carnegie Fellow, a fellow at the Kellogg Institute of the University of Notre Dame and the Radcliffe Institute of Harvard, and held the Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellowship in Japan. She holds a Ph.D. in political science from Harvard and a A.B. in international relations from Stanford. She was an assistant and then associate professor at the New School for Social Research from 2000-2011.


Recent accomplishments:

Best Book Award, Human Rights Section of the International Studies Association for

States and the Logics of Gender Justice (2019)

Recognized by New Mexico Senate and House of Representatives for “scholarly achievement in the social sciences and keen awareness of the human dimensions of global problems” (2016)

Andrew Carnegie Fellow (2015)


Key Publications:

Mala Htun and S. Laurel Weldon, The Logics of Gender Justice: State Action on Women’s Rights around the World (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2018).

Mala Htun, Inclusion Without Representation in Latin America: Gender Quotas and Ethnic Reservations (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2016).

Mala Htun, Sex and the State: Abortion, Divorce, and the Family under Latin American Dictatorships and Democracies (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2003). 

Published in Spanish as Sexo y Estado: Aborto, divorcio y familia bajo dictaduras y democracias en América Latina (Santiago: Ediciones Universidad Diego Portales, 2010).

Mala Htun, Francesca Jensenius, Justine Tinkler, Melanie Dominguez, and Carlos Contreras, Effects of Mandatory Sexual Misconduct Training at U.S. Universities.” Socius, 8 (2022). 

Mala Htun and Francesca Jensenius, “Expressive Power of Anti-Violence Legislation: Changes in Social Norms on Violence Against Women in Mexico.” World Politics 74, 1 (2022): 1-36.

Mala Htun, “Women’s Equality and the Covid-19 Caregiving Crisis.” Perspectives on Politics 20:2 (2022): 635-645.

Mala Htun and Francesca Jensenius, “Comparative Analysis for Theory Development,” in Erica Simmons and Nicholas Rush Smith, eds., Rethinking Comparison: Innovative Methods for Qualitative Political Inquiry (New York, Cambridge University Press, 2021).

Mala Htun and Francesca R. Jensenius, “Comparative Perspectives on the Caregiving Crisis, Welfare States, and Men’s Roles,” APSA Comparative Politics Newsletter XXX, Issue 2, Fall 2020: 22-32.

Mala Htun, “Tenure and Promotion After the Pandemic,” Science, June 5, 2020.

Mala Htun and Francesca R. Jensenius, “The news media’s reporting on a pandemic spike in violence against women. It might actually be declining,” Washington Post, April 24, 2020. 

Mala Htun and Francesca Jensenius, “Political Change, Women’s Rights, and Public Opinion on Gender Equality in Myanmar,” European Journal of Development Research 32 (2020): 457-481.

Mala Htun and Francesca Jensenius, “Fighting Violence Against Women: Laws, Norms, and Challenges Ahead,” Daedalus 149, 1 (2020): 144-159.

Nadia Brown, Yusaku Horiuchi, Mala Htun, and David Samuels, “Gender Gaps in Perceptions of Political Science Journals.” PS: Political Science and Politics 53, no. 1 (2020): 114-121

Mala Htun and Francesca Jensenius, “Aspirational Laws as Weak Institutions: Legislation to Combat Violence against Women in Mexico,” in Daniel M. Brinks, Steven Levitsky, and Victoria Murillo, eds., Weak Institutions in Latin America (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2020).

Mala Htun, Francesca R. Jensenius, and Jami Nelson Nuñez, “Gender Discriminatory Laws and Women’s Economic Agency,” Social Politics 26, Issue 2 (Summer 2019): 193–222. Free access from OUP here. 

Mala Htun, Francesca R. Jensenius, and Liv Tønnessen, “Introduction to Special Issue of Social Politics: Legal Regimes, Women’s Work, and Women’s Empowerment,” Social Politics 26, Issue 2 (Summer 2019): 189–192. Special issue co-edited by Htun, Jensenius, and Tønnessen.

Mala Htun, “Promoting Diversity and Inclusion through Engagement: The APSA 2018 Hackathon,” PS: Political Science and Politics 52, Issue 4 (2019): 677-683.

John M. Carey, Kevin Carman, Katherine Clayton, Yusaku Horiuchi, Mala Htun, and Brittany Ortiz, “Who Wants to Hire a More Diverse Faculty? A Conjoint Analysis of Faculty and Student Preferences for Gender and Racial/Ethnic Diversity,” Politics, Groups, and Identities 8, no. 3 (2020): 535-553. Published online November 8, 2018. 

Francesca R. Jensenius, Mala Htun, David Samuels, David Singer, Adria Lawrence, and Michael Chwe, “Benefits and Pitfalls of Google Scholar. PS: Political Science & Politics 51, no.4 (October 2018): 820-824. [Authors listed in Certified Random order.]