Camilo Nieto-Matiz, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Political Science and Geography

Camilo Nieto-Matiz


Camilo Nieto-Matiz is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Texas at San Antonio. He is also a research affiliate at the Violence and Transitional Justice Lab at Notre Dame’s Kellogg Institute. Prior to coming to UTSA, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Inter-American Policy and Research (CIPR) at Tulane University.

His research focuses on the causes of political and criminal violence and its consequences for democracy, the rule of law, and state institutions. Methodologically, he relies on various approaches, including statistical methods of causal identification and qualitative methods, such as case studies and in-depth qualitative interviews.

His research has focused on the politics of state capacity, in particular, how and whether political elites choose to develop or undermine state institutions in regions affected by rural inequality and violent conflict. His research also studies the legacies of violent conflict and the conditions under which political institutions and democratization may either produce violence in some cases, while containing conflict and promoting peaceful development in others.

More recently, his research agenda has focused on two questions: the political economy of violence in mining areas as well as local communities' acceptance or rejection of extractive industries; and the use of transitional justice mechanisms in new democracies, with a focus on how citizens think about accountability and the rule of law in contexts of violence and human rights violations.

His research has been published or is forthcoming in Comparative Political Studies, Democracy and Security, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Journal of Peace Research, and Research and Politics.

He holds a PhD and MA in Political Science from the University of Notre Dame, an MA in Public Policy from the Willy Brandt School at Universität Erfurt (Germany), and a BA in Political Science from Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (Colombia).


  • GLA/POL 5303: Politics of Civil Wars
  • GLA/POL 5883: Global Development and Human Rights

Research Interests

  • Political economy
  • State capacity
  • Criminal and political violence
  • Politics of land conflict and land inequality
  • Latin America


  • Ph.D., Political Science, University of Notre Dame (2020);
  • M.A., Political Science, University of Notre Dame (2016);
  • M.A., Public Policy and Conflict Studies, Universitat Erfurt, Erfurt, Germany (2013);
  • B.A., Political Science, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogota, Colombia (2009).

Honors and Awards


Grants, Patents and Clinical Trials