Jaime Lluch was born and raised in Puerto Rico (an unincorporated territory of the USA), and has spent many years studying and working in the USA and Europe. He has also traveled extensively in the Americas and in the Mediterranean region.
He received his B.A. from Brown University (Phi Beta Kappa) and an M.A. (Politics) from UC Berkeley, and earned his Juris Doctor from Yale Law School, and then spent several years working as an environmental law attorney, etc.
He earned his Ph.D. in Political Science at Yale University, awarded in 2007. His thesis was entitled “Shades of Stateless Nationhood: Explaining Internal Variation in the Political Orientation of the National Movements of Quebec and Catalonia (1976-2005)" (Chair: James C. Scott).
He is a comparativist who works on the constitutional and political accommodation of national diversity in multinational democracies, comparative federalism and comparative constitutionalism, models of multilevel governance and citizenship, European and EU politics, and also on migration and global governance. He is also interested in the law and politics of citizenship, race/ethnicity and multiculturalism. He maintains a strong area interest in the Americas, including Latin America, the Caribbean, and North America (Canada and the USA).
His published work (so far) has to do with the accommodation of ethnonational diversity in multinational democracies, models of multilevel governance and citizenship, and comparative federalism. His book entitled Visions of Sovereignty: Nationalism and Accommodation in Multinational Democracies, was published (2014) by the University of Pennsylvania Press in the Series edited by Prof. Brendan O’Leary.
Visions of Sovereignty was awarded the IV Vilaseca i Marcet international book prize (2012) by the Institut d’Estudis Autonòmics, Generalitat de Catalunya, Barcelona, and another version of the book was published in Barcelona, by permission from Penn Press, and entitled The Moral Polity of the Nationalist: Sovereignty and Accommodation in Catalonia and Quebec (1976-2010).
He has articles published in Publius: the Journal of Federalism, European Political Science Review, Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, and Nationalities Papers: the Journal of Nationalism and Ethnicity.
He organized a major conference at St. Antony’s College, Oxford in June 2011, and based on it, an edited volume has been published (2014) in which he is the single editor, entitled Constitutionalism and the Politics of Accommodation in Multinational Democracies, by Palgrave Macmillan UK, in their St. Antony’s College (Oxford) Series.
In April of 2007 he was awarded a National Science Foundation Post-Doctoral Fellowship for the 2007-2009 period. During the first year of his post-doc (2007-2008), he was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Political and Social Sciences Department at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. During the second year (2008-2009), he was a Visiting Fellow in the Max Weber Post-Doctoral Program at the EUI.
During 2009-2010, he was a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at URGE (Research Unit on European Governance), at the Collegio Carlo Alberto, in Turin (Moncalieri), Italy. His project during 2009-2010 was on migration and citizenship in the European Union, etc.
During 2010-2011, he was the Santander Fellow in Iberian and European Studies at the European Studies Center, St. Antony's College, Oxford University, U.K., where he was working on a new research project on citizenship regimes and transnationality in the EU and the Americas, etc.
During 2011-2012, he was a Visiting Fellow in Italian Studies at Collegio Carlo Alberto in Turin, Italy, where he was working on "Italian Federalism and Devolutionary Autonomies in Northern Italy." He did extensive fieldwork in Aosta and Bolzano-Alto Adige.
During 2012-13, he was a Visiting Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Penn Program
on Democracy, Citizenship, and Constitutionalism at the University of Pennsylvania, where his teaching and research is on "Constitution-Making." He was also Fellow of the Penn Program
on Democracy, Citizenship, and Constitutionalism at the University of Pennsylvania during 2013-14. Since January 2014, he is associate professor of Political Science at the University of Puerto Rico.
His book Visions of Sovereignty (2014) has received several reviews to date:
“These are questions that, as the author points out, lack answers because they have not been contemplated by previous political research on nationalism and secessionism…The book is easy to read, interesting, and original. The originality comes from a combination of the “moral polity” perspective and the extensive empirical evidence the author has collected and analyzed…Both the subject matter and the perspective the author takes absolutely succeed in captivating the interest of the reader in the potential and complexity of analyzing and understanding the cognitive dimension of politics, a rather ‘classical’ but never sufficiently valued perspective of analysis. Overall, a book well worth reading.” Mireia Grau Creus, Publius: The Journal of Federalism Vol. 45 No. 3 (Summer 2015)
“This is an original, provocative approach to the study of minority nationalist movements…One of the most impressive features of this project is the depth of field research, including interviews and surveys of hundreds of party leaders and militants and primary party documents going back several decades…It offers the possibility of exploring many similar cases to further test and refine its arguments. Recommended.” Philip Howe, Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries Vol. 52 No. 10 (June 2015)
“This is an ambitious book that documents within-case variations in national(ist) movements and examines how and why these variations emerge and change over time…In place of the existing paradigms that ignore and/or fail to examine the heterogeneity within national movements, Lluch offers a new approach…Visions of Sovereignty is an engaging read. The book’s strength is due both to its reliance on rich empirical data and its theoretical innovation. Lluch undoubtedly makes a contribution to our understanding of national movements and his conclusions are of great relevance to cases beyond Québec and Catalonia.”
Yesim Bayar, Political Studies Review (U.K.), 15(3) (May, 2017).
“With a refined theoretical approach, the primary objective of Visions of Sovereignty is to present what Lluch calls the “moral polity thesis” in order to explain why and in what ways stateless nations seek forms of self-determination… Lluch’s unique and original theory outlines how, in multinational democracies, nationalists consider themselves as part of the “moral polity” wherein stateless nations have expectations of reciprocity, and accommodation by the central state…Lluch continues to pursue a novel argument in shattering the standard dualism that presents nationalist visions of sovereignty as either secessionist or non-secessionist… The complexity of this breakdown is well-served by Lluch’s presentation of his research. He presents thorough, qualitative field research conducted in both Catalonia and Quebec across all of the relevant political parties, interviewing party leadership, engaging in focus groups with base-level militants, and distributing a questionnaire. His findings are impeccably organized in Visions of Sovereignty… Lluch writes a compelling case for his moral polity thesis that proves to be far more satisfactory than explanations that have come before it. It is a more complex and diverse explanation of nationalism as we know it today.”
Cole Edick, Harvard International Review, Vol. 36 (March 22, 2015).
My edited book on Constitutionalism and the Politics of Accommodation, Palgrave Macmillan (2014), has received the following reviews:
“The title reflects the intention expressed in Lluch's introduction to cross the disciplinary boundaries between comparative constitutionalism and comparative politics (p. 6). True to this intention, this collection of case studies not only considers ‘constitutional moments’ (p. 7), but also socio-political phenomena, such as a country's political culture, interactions between majority and minority nationalisms, and historical contingencies. It is precisely its interdisciplinary approach which constitutes the most significant contribution of this book in a field of inquiry traditionally focused on matters of constitutional and institutional engineering… Overall, the book contains a series of very interesting case studies that satisfy the goal of combining constitutional studies with comparative politics. The case selection is sound and diverse, broadly representative of the accommodation arrangements found in Western democracies. By introducing some less well-known cases alongside ‘classical’ multinational democracies, it keeps the reader engaged.” Zaha Kheir, Nations and Nationalism, Vol. 22, No. 1 (January 2016)
Dr. Jaime Lluch
Department of Political Science
University of Puerto Rico
PO Box 23345
San Juan, Puerto Rico 00931-3345