María Isabel Puerta Riera

I am an adjunct professor of Political Science, teaching U.S. Government, State, and Local Government and International Politics at Valencia College.

I was a Visiting Professor of Political Science at Valencia College from July 2021 to May 2022.

I am a Research Fellow at GAPAC, currently working on Sharp Power in Latin America and the effects of authoritarianism and illiberalism in exiled communities.

I am the Chair of the LASA Section on Venezuela Studies (2022-2024).

I am a Media Analyst at Ad Fontes (2022).

I am part of the podcast Mirada Semanal.

I was an Associate Professor of Political Science at Universidad de Carabobo. I taught for 18 years, chaired Public Management, and coordinated the Research Group on Politics and Institutions.

My research focuses on democratic backsliding and authoritarian and populist experiences in Latin America. My first book, The debate between the models of representative and participatory democracy. Theoretical, conceptual elements., recounts the theoretical foundations of democracy and the transition from the representative to the participative model in Venezuela. My second book, Institutions and State in Venezuela. Chronicles of the Venezuelan institutional crisis, reflect on the democratic erosion in Venezuela under the rule of Hugo Chávez. My most recent book, Crisis de la democracia: ¿en el umbral de la posdemocracia?, explores the theoretical discussion on the crisis of democracy.

My research interests are democratic backsliding, hybrid regimes, authoritarianism, illiberalism,  populism, and immigration in Latin America. My teaching interests are comparative politics, Latin American politics, comparative democratization, international politics, and immigration.

I have published articles on the influence of Russian-state media in Latin America with Johanna Cilano; Chinese authoritarian influence in Latin America with Armando Chaguaceda; effectiveness of economic sanctionspopulism, and autocratization under the pandemic; analyzed the Colombian government’s strategy against Nicolás Maduro, with Omar Ocampo; political models and participation in Latin America, with Armando Chaguaceda; Venezuela’s crisis of democracyauthoritarian decay in Venezuelawith Armando Chaguaceda; the crisis of democracy in political theoryVenezuelan hybrid regime, with Armando Chaguaceda, communal councils in Venezuela,  the crisis of democracy and representation in Venezuela.

My work has been published in: Democracy Paradox, NACLAPROGRAMA CUBA, Foro Cubano Revista de divulgaciónRevista Demo AmLatDemocracia ActualDevelopmentDiálogo PolíticoRevista EspiralRevista Mexicana de Análisis y Administración PúblicaRevista Observatorio Laboral.

I received a Doctorate in Social Sciences and an M.A. in Political Science and Public Administration from the Universidad de Carabobo in Venezuela.

Contact information:

Poinciana Campus

3255 Pleasant Hill Rd.

Kissimmee FL 34746