SOAS University of London

Department of Politics and International Studies

Ms Sameen Ali

BSc Hons. (Lahore University of Management Sciences), MSc (LSE)
  • Overview
  • Teaching
  • Research


Sameen A. Mohsin Ali
Department of Politics and International Studies

Graduate Teaching Assistant

Ms Sameen Ali
Email address:
SOAS University of London
Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG
Russell Square: College Buildings
Office No:
Academic Support Hours:
Mondays 12 - 1
Thesis title:
Politicisation of the Bureaucracy and Political Access in Pakistan (working title)
Year of Study:
Internal Supervisors


Sameen has an MSc Comparative Politics (Research) from the LSE and completed her BSc (Hons) from the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Pakistan. Before joining the MPhil/PhD program at SOAS, Sameen was teaching Political Science at LUMS.

PhD Research

My thesis explores the ‘politicisation’ of the bureaucracy in Pakistan, tracing the appointment/promotion/transfer of senior and mid-tier bureaucrats by politicians and other bureaucrats through legal, extra-legal, and illegal means. Those in a position to influence appointments face incentives to manipulate the appointment process.  This thesis examines those personal and political incentives as well as the methods used to influence bureaucratic appointments in Pakistan's most densely populated province, Punjab.  I show that different combinations of 'incentive structures' and 'appointment methods' produce different patronage bonds. The nature of these bonds determines whether or not desired outcomes (electoral, bureaucratic efficiency, and personal enrichment) are achieved.  Based on interviews and ethnographic observations, as well as a fine-grained review of existing rules and procedures, I find that those in a position to influence appointments are better able to bend the delivery of services to their personal or political advantage, not when they undertake formally 'illegal' appointments (which introduce higher personal and political costs), but when they exploit loopholes in existing appointment procedures.


  • Political Studies Association (PSA) Annual Conference 2014
  • Pakistan Workshop 2014
  • SOAS Politics MPhil Students' Conference 2014
  • 23rd European Conference on South Asian Studies (ECSAS), 2014



  • Comparative Politics
  • Pakistan
  • Institutions
  • Power
  • Bureaucracies
  • Political Parties