My research interests can be divided into three categories: a) provision of incentives within organized crime groups; b) the historical political economy of military institutions; c) state capacity and economic performance over time. My work combines a “thin theory” approach with an “analytical history” empirical strategy. I believe that many interesting social scientific questions can only be answered satisfactorily with a combination of qualitative and quantitative analysis, with the relative ratio between the two depending on the specific question at hand. Hence, I believe in methodological pluralism and that different methods can offer interesting insights into the working of social processes. My comparative advantage lies in the careful investigation of historical sources, both primary and secondary. This is partially due to my background in history and political economy before starting my PhD, having studied under (and deeply influenced by) scholars in both fields. This is reflected in the role that an analysis of the historical context and the importance of historical details play in my work.AbstractsSample published researchPiano, E. E. (2017). Free riders: the economics and organization of outlaw motorcycle gangs. Public Choice, 171(3-4), 283-301.This paper investigates the organizational structure of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, one of the largest and best known North American motorcycle gangs. Within the first few decades since their establishment, the Angels developed a hierarchical organizational form, which allowed them to overcome internal conflict and exploit the gains from their involvement in criminal activities. This organizational form, I argue, played a central role in the rapid success of the Angels in the North American (and international) criminal landscape.Piano, E. E. (2017). Outlaw and economics: Biker gangs and club goods. Rationality and Society, 30(3), 350-376.