My Research

Empirically, I seek to understand the different instruments China wields to influence other countries’ domestic and foreign policies. Specifically, my work explores the conditions under which exposure to China’s economic instruments such as foreign aid and investment or media propaganda drive people to see China more positively (or negatively).

Theoretically, I am inspired by models of bounded rationality whereby individuals can simultaneously hold incongruent beliefs; respond to environmental triggers such as frames, priming, and cues; and are susceptible to myriad cognitive biases. Much of my past and current work situates these micro-level mechanisms in the context of international relations.

Methodologically, I believe the correct, and best, approach to causal inference depends on the question and context. As a result, I strive to constantly learn new research methods and develop novel techniques when necessary. Knowledge advances as our collective toolkit grows. I therefore maintain open source standards for all my work.

Working Papers


Accommodation in the Shadow of Hierarchy

Across the globe, states vary greatly in their willingness to accommodate China’s interests. How can we explain this variation?

Winning Hearts and Minds or Stoking Resentment?

One facet of China’s foreign economic activities at the center of scholarly and policy debates is its foreign aid practices. Does Chinese aid bolster or tarnish China’s image?

Recent & Upcoming Talks

Does Chinese aid bolster or tarnish China’s image? I recently presented preliminary results of my working paper of the same name.

Web scraping is a powerful tool for mining large amounts of data. Though Python has traditionally been the preferred language for …