Vivek Chibber is an American academic, social theorist, editor, and professor of sociology at New York University, who has published widely on development, social theory, and politics.
Chibber was born in India in 1965, and moved to United States in 1980, where he has lived since. He completed a BA in political science in 1987 at Northwestern University. In 1999, he finished his PhD in sociology at the University of Wisconsin, where his dissertation was supervised by Erik Olin Wright. He began as an assistant professor at New York University in 1999, where is now a full professor.
Chibber’s first book, Locked in Place, attempted to answer why some countries were able to build "developmental states" in the decades after World War II while others were not. He argued that the literature on developmental state had unduly ignored the constraints that class power imposed on state-building, particularly the power and influence of domestic capitalists. Chibber showed that the main reason Indian industrial policy only met with middling success was that domestic capital blocked attempts to build an effective planning apparatus. Whereas in South Korea, the state managed to build an alliance with domestic business houses around industrial planning. Chibber’s book was widely acclaimed and won several awards including, in 2005, Barrington Moore Book Award, and honorable mention for the American Sociological Association’s Distinguished Publication Prize.