Dr. Fatovic's primary research and teaching interests are in modern and contemporary political and constitutional theory, including American political thought, democratic theory, and executive power.
Professor Fatovic's research focuses primarily on the development of liberalism and modern constitutionalism in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century political thought, especially at the American Founding. Much of his research has explored how liberal political thinkers such as John Locke, Alexander Hamilton, and Thomas Jefferson have addressed the limits of the law and the dangers of discretionary power in dealing with emergencies and other extraordinary occurrences. He is particularly interested in the relevance of their ideas to current debates over the tensions between emergency powers and the rule of law in the context of the "war on terror." His first book, Outside the Law: Emergency and Executive Power (The John Hopkins University Press, 2009), examines the extra-legal powers of the executive in liberal constitutional thought from John Locke to the creation of the American presidency. Extra-Legal Power and Legitimacy: Perspectives on Prerogative (Oxford University Press, 2013), a book that was co-edited with Benjamin A. Kleinerman, surveys the ways that different models of emergency power legitimize and constrain the use of extra-legal measures.
Professor Fatovic's articles have appeared in the American Journal of Political Science, Perspectives on Politics, History of Political Thought, Journal of the History of Ideas, American Political Thought, the Maryland Law Review, and The Good Society. He is currently completing a single-authored book (The Politics of Economic Inequality in Postrevolutionary America) that explores debates over the proper role of the government in dealing with various forms of economic inequality during the first few decades of the American Republic.