I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science and International Relations at the University of Southern California, a Hoover Fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution, and a Faculty Affiliate at Stanford's Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law. I received a Ph.D. from Harvard University, where I was a fellow at the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies.

I study politics in the world's autocracies. My first book, Propaganda in Autocracies: Institutions, Information, and the Politics of Belief (Cambridge University Press), explains why propaganda varies so dramatically across autocracies. It received the International Journal of Press/Politics Hazel Gaudet-Erskine Best Book Award, Honorable Mention for the Luebbert Award for the Best Book in Comparative Politics, and Honorable Mention for the APSA Democracy & Autocracy Section's Best Book Award. My second book, Inside Dictatorship: Social Cleavages and Institutional Constraints in the Republic of Congo (R&R, Cambridge University Press), explores how Africa's autocrats have learned to survive in the post-Cold War world. My articles have appeared in the Journal of Politics, British Journal of Political Science, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Security Studies, China Quarterly, Journal of Democracy, and Foreign Affairs, among others.

My work has been featured by The New York Times, The Economist, and NPR's Radio Lab. I regularly contribute to a variety of online platforms, including the National Endowment for Democracy's Power 3.0 Project, African Arguments, Africa is a Country, and Political Violence at a Glance. I can be reached via email (blcarter@usc.edu, blcarter@stanford.edu). My Google Scholar profile is here. Follow me on Twitter here.