David Smilde

David Smilde

David Smilde is a WOLA Senior Fellow and the Charles A. and Leo M. Favrot Professor of Human Relations at Tulane University. He founded the WOLA Venezuela Politics and Human Rights blog and curated it from 2012-2020. He has lived in or worked on Venezuela since 1992, and has researched Venezuela for the past 30 years. He has taught at the Universidad Central de Venezuela and the Universidad Católica Ándres Bello. He is currently working on a book manuscript called Venezuela’s Transition to Illiberalism: Hugo Chávez and 21st Century Socialism, 2007-2012.

Wilson Center Publication | From Populist to Socialist to Authoritarian Chavismo: Obstacles and Opportunities for Democratic Change

This week, WOLA Senior Fellow and Tulane University Professor David Smilde published a study for the Wilson Center’s Latin American Program through which he traces the evolution of Venezuela’s chavismo from its beginnings as a version of left populism based on the charisma of former President Hugo Chávez, to its turn toward socialism, to its current authoritarian incarnation under Nicolás Maduro.

Antonieta La Rocca entrevista a David Smilde

Como saben, estoy de año sabatico, escribiendo un libro, haciendo un esfuerzo de no hablar con los medios ni meterme en las redes sociales. Pero mi amiga Antonieta La Rocca me entusiasmó con una invitación a su nuevo programa, así que no pude resistir. Hablamos sobre...

Venezuela Weekly: Discussion of U.S. Venezuela Policy

A few months before the U.S. presidential elections Democrats are discussing potential policy changes regarding Venezuela if their candidate were to win. According to the party platform, a Biden administration would review sectoral sanctions and seek "more effective...

Venezuela Program

Geoff Ramsey

Geoff Ramsey

Director for Venezuela @GRamsey_LatAm

David Smilde

David Smilde

WOLA Senior Fellow and the Charles A. and Leo M. Favrot Professor of Human Relations at Tulane University


Kristen Martinez-Gugerli

Venezuela Program Associate