Scott Miller

Director of the Project on Democracy and Capitalism

Fast Facts

  • Director of the Project on Democracy and Capitalism
  • Lecturer, UVA Darden School of Business
  • Former postdoctoral fellow, Yale School of Management's International Center for Finance
  • Economic historian
  • Expertise on modern economic systems, economic instability and volatility, early American economics

Areas Of Expertise

  • Economic Issues
  • Infrastructure
  • Jobs and Economy
  • Trade

Scott Miller is the director of the Miller Center's Project on Democracy and Capitalism and an assistant professor at the Miller Center. He is also a lecturer and research associate at the UVA Darden School of Business. From 2019 to 2021, he held a postdoctoral fellowship in economic and business history at the Yale School of Management's International Center for Finance.

As an economic historian, Miller examines the development of modern economic systems, particularly during periods of instability and volatility. In two different veins of research, Miller uses economic crises as a lens to isolate mechanisms of change in the early American Republic and 1840s Europe, with broad corollaries for modern systems in the first and second stages of economic development. His work frames the early American republic as a resource-rich, capital- and labor-poor developing economy, which was reliant on and subject to global export markets dominated by global hegemons such as Great Britain. Likewise, 1840s Europe represents a system of interconnected economies at the brink of breakout industrialization. While not perfect stand-ins for 21st century development stories, early America and 1840s Europe proxy the symbiotic relationship between macroeconomic forces, institutions, political systems, cultural values, and contingent events in the development process.

Miller has received many awards and fellowships, including the Arthur C. Cole Grant from the Economic History Association, the John Carter Brown Library Fellowship at Brown University, the Alfred D. Chandler Jr. Fellowship at Harvard Business School, the Monticello-UVA Fellowship at the International Center for Jefferson Studies, the James C. Rees Entrepreneurship Fellowship at The Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington, and the Bankard Fund for Political Economy Predoctoral Fellowship. He is the author or co-author of numerous scholarly papers on economic history, financial crises, and the interplay between societal and economic change. He has also written or co-written 10 case studies on financial crisis and economic development.

A native of Denver, Colorado, Miller earned a BA from Vanguard University in 2007, an MA in American history from George Mason University in 2013, and an MA and PhD in economic history from the University of Virginia in 2015 and 2018, respectively.

Scott Miller News Feed

Did Hamilton and Jefferson believe that democracy and capitalism could coexist in America?

Two of the world’s leading historians on Hamilton and Jefferson—Joanne Freeman (Yale University) and Frank Cogliano (University of Edinburgh)—examine the founders’ views of the relationship between political freedom and the means of economic well-being. Hamilton's and Jefferson’s complex views on democracy and capitalism and their different visions for these institutions continue to catalyze American and global society to this day.
Scott C. Miller Miller Center Presents
Financial crises shape societies, overturn governments, and alter the course of history. Simply put, crisis is the one constant of capitalist economies. Out of the ashes of the Panic of 1907—the first worldwide financial crisis of the twentieth century—Congress sought to moderate financial storms by creating the Federal Reserve in 1913. Drawing on lessons from history and modern monetary policy, a panel of experts considers the emergence of the Federal Reserve and its role in fighting the societal tumult that flows from financial instability, highlighting the staggering power of "the Fed" and its place in a democratic society.
Scott Miller Miller Center Presents
Join Judy Woodruff, PBS NewsHour senior correspondent and former anchor and managing editor, to explore a debate present at America's founding that still permeates our political, economic, and social life—can democracy and capitalism coexist? Jamelle Bouie, New York Times columnist and political analyst for CBS News; Sidney Milkis, the White Burkett Miller Professor of Governance and Foreign Affairs at the University of Virginia; and Scott C. Miller, economic historian and research fellow for the Miller Center's Project on Democracy and Capitalism, examine the relationship between free markets and a free society—and how to balance the freedom and the well-being of American citizens.
Scott Miller Miller Center Presents
Are democratic and capitalist values the same or do we need to strike a balance? Can societies be moral while also making themselves rich? Why should we even care? Join executive strategist and thought leader Jeff Cherry, Ed Freeman of the University of Virginia Darden School of Business, and Glory Liu, lecturer on social studies at Harvard, as they examine where capitalism and democracy clash, how previous generations have reconciled the conflict between wealth and virtue, and how we can bring these two pillars of liberal society into alignment.
Scott Miller Miller Center Presents
The 2022 Ambassador William C. Battle Symposium on American Diplomacy addressed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the resulting shifts in the global geopolitical landscape and featured the University of Virginia's Miller Center Research Fellow Scott Miller.
Scott Miller Miller Center Presents
A panel of Miller Center experts and guests examine the economic impact and global financial ramifications of Russia’s war in Ukraine. In particular, the panel assesses whether Russia is likely to experience an all-out crisis, and if so, how it might affect the European economy and global financial markets. Two years into the COVID-19 pandemic and with hopes for some recovery on the horizon, does this evolving crisis stymie the long-anticipated world economic recovery?
Scott Miller Miller Center Presents