In this account, I discuss my own personal journey and the efforts of many of us associated with the Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis at Indiana University to develop better analyses of how institutions affect behavior and outcomes in diverse settings. First, I reflect on my experience as a young student and in my early career, primarily to encourage those who face obstacles. Then, I discuss our institutional analysis and our research on urban governance and common-pool resources, which helped me to develop more general frameworks for the analysis of complex systems over time. The frameworks have enabled us to dig into and analyze system structure, behavior, and outcomes to make and test coherent predictions and build better theory. Last, I share some ideas concerning future scholarly directions.

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Margaret Levi, Editor of the , talks with Elinor Ostrom. In this autobiographical interview, Dr. Ostrom talks about her personal journey in academia, not only as a woman, but also as a non-traditional student who worked outside of academia before pursuing graduate work. She discusses her belief in collaboration and multi-disciplinary research, as well as her research in common-pool resources and governance.

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