Placement Candidates

Matthew Atkinson - American Politics, Methods

American Politics, Methods
Contact Info:

matthewa@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

The Theory of Realigning Issues: Why the Issue Structure of Partisan Conflict Changes Over Time

Dissertation Summary:

United States Congressional history is filled with small changes in the polarization of the parties on different issues and sometimes outright flip-flops. Why, then, do the issues that structure party conflict change over time? My dissertation offers a theory that explains those changes. This theory of realigning issues holds that changes in party conflict are a product of the changing structure of interests in society. When the interests of two different groups become more compatible, new coalitional opportunities emerge. Large changes or realignments, therefore, are not driven by changing interests themselves but by changes in the relative compatibility of societal groups with the major party coalitions. I argue that episodes of realignment are set off by the activation of realigning issues. Realigning issues are issues that become central to organizing partisan conflict when new coalitional partnerships either commit the coalitions to polar positions on a salient issue or release one of the coalitions from an electorally disadvantageous constraint on a salient issue. For example, the coalitions polarized on slavery when westward expansion of the United States enabled the development of an anti-slavery coalition; and the Democratic Party was able to moderate on race in the 1960s when the northern migration of African Americans provided a coalitional alternative that relaxed the constraint imposed by the Party's dependence on the South. By my account, then, changes in the interest composition of the coalitions caused by realigning issues should lead to predictable changes in how polarized the parties are on all issue domains. To test this theory, I construct an original data set of House roll call votes (1st to 109th Congresses) coded according to the Katznelson-Lapinski policy typology and measure MC issue preferences with DW-NOMINATE scores that scale the subset of roll call votes for each of the major policy categories. I find strong support for my hypothesis by analyzing changes in the levels of inter-party polarization on national defense, social policy, and immigration over the course of American history.

Research Interests:

Political Parties, Realignment, Interest Groups, Public Opinion, Political Leadership, Participation, History and Politics

Teaching Interests:

Public Opinion, Congress, The Presidency, Campaigns and Elections, Interest Groups, Ideology, Democracy, American Political Development, History and Politics, Introduction to American Politics, Data Analysis, Research Design

Chris Baylor - American Politics, Methods

American Politics, Methods
CV:
Contact Info:

Chris Baylor College of the Holy Cross Department of Political Science 1 College St Worcester, MA 01604 USA EMAIL: cbaylor@holycross.edu

Dissertation Title:

First to the Party: The Group Origins of Party Transformation

Dissertation Summary:

My dissertation shows how two marginal social groups - civil rights activists in the 1940s and religious conservatives in the 1980s - achieved many of their goals by becoming core players in a political party. In each case, the group faced opposition within its chosen party but allied with friendly partisans to marginalize opponents and nominate politicians committed to their priorities. Trying to influence office holders whom the groups had no hand in nominating proved ineffective: office holders would promise benefits but do nothing that displeased core supporters or median voters. Allying with a group already in the party that would gain by the alliance was the road to success. In both cases, marginal social groups rather than politicians drove the process, creating transformed coalitions that would stand up for rather than straddle the issues they cared about.

Research Interests:

Parties; Interest Groups; Public Opinion and Voting Behavior; American Political Development; Ideology; and Campaigns and Elections

Teaching Interests:

American Politics, Parties and Elections, Public Policy, Methods, Political Behavior, Ideology, American Political Development, and the American Presidency

Ruth Carlitz - Comparative Politics, Methods

Comparative Politics, Methods
Contact Info:

 rcarlitz@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

The Limits of Democracy: Explaining Poor Service Delivery and Voter Quiescence in Tanzania

Dissertation Summary:

My dissertation focuses on Tanzania, where nearly half of the population languishes without access to a clean and safe source of drinking water despite massive investments in this sector in recent years. In order to make sense of this disconnect, I analyze finely-grained, novel data on spending and infrastructure construction for water provision, contextualized by public opinion surveys, interviews and focus group discussions. I find that Tanzania's strategy of decentralizing water provision to local governments has largely failed to improve access, primarily due to political favoritism at the local level. Communities aligned with the dominant party receive a disproportionate amount of new water infrastructure, as do those that are wealthier and better connected. Decentralization has thus failed to promote responsiveness by local governments, since many of the country's neediest communities lack the resources to effectively express their demands.

Research Interests:

Research Interests:

My research focuses on understanding how governments maintain power despite failing to meet the basic needs of their constituents. Using finely-grained data on public service delivery, I analyze patterns of distribution to draw inferences about strategies of regime maintenance. I also analyze surveys and conduct qualitative research to understand why citizens often fail to sanction politicians' poor performance.

Teaching Interests:

Teaching Interests:

I am prepared to teach a broad range of courses in Comparative Politics and Research Methods at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Specifically, I would be interested in teaching the following courses: Introduction to Comparative Politics; African Politics; Political Economy of Development; Distributive Politics and Corruption; Non-Governmental Organizations and Development; Introduction to Quantitative Methods; Introduction to Research Design

Parissa Majidi Clark - Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
CV:
Contact Info:

Parissa Majdi Clark University of California, Los Angeles Political Science EMAIL: parimajdi@yahoo.com

Dissertation Title:

From El Nuevo Despertar to Nonprofit: Changes in Puerto Rican Political Identity in the US. Since 1961

Dissertation Summary:

During the mid to late 1960’s, Puerto Rican activism in U.S. communities reached its height on the heels of the civil rights movement and after widespread migration to the U.S. from Puerto Rico. By 1980, many of these groups became financially insolvent or their volunteer base shrank drastically due to less available public funds and widespread demographic changes within Puerto Rican communities. This dissertation asks the following question: what strategies did surviving groups of this era employ to stay afloat and ultimately what changes occurred as a result of this shift in platform? By analyzing two case study groups from the Puerto Rican civil rights era in New York City, The United Bronx Parents and Aspira through original fieldwork, this dissertation will explain the consequences and strategies that have come out of non-profit corporate and philanthropic modeling since 1980 and how pan-Latino identity has been instrumental in shaping this stance. Both groups, found by Puerto Rican working class, migrant women born in Puerto Rico, sought to influence political structures in their localities and offer their direct communities an avenue for membership and citizenship where none was previously present or denied. Theories explored include citizenship, the racial state, the politics of place, racial solidarity, Puerto Rican feminism, and nonprofit organizational culture.

Research Interests:

Latina/o Politics Citizenship Social Movements Latin American Political Thought Intersections of Race and Gender Latino Nonprofit Organizations Post-colonial Thought Immigrants and Institutions Diaspora Politics

Teaching Interests:

Megan Gallagher - Political Theory

Political Theory
Contact Info:

UCLA Political Science, 4289 Bunche Hall, Box 951472 Los Angeles, California 90095-1472. EMAIL: mgallagher@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

Republics, Passions, and Patria: Love of Country in Eighteenth Century Political Thought

Dissertation Summary:

The history of republican thought and the history of the passions are two threads that rarely find themselves intertwined, yet political theory finds itself in the midst of both a republican revival and the affective turn. By bringing these two vast subfields into dialogue with one another, we stand to learn about both republican political theory and political passions much that would otherwise remain oblique. I argue that civic virtue (a cornerstone of republicanism) and the passions share important connections to which contemporary republican political thought has not always been attentive. Specifically, neo-republicanism and constitutional patriotism’s inattention, or lack of commitment, to the interplay of civic virtue and emotion is a matter of choice and not a necessary outcome of the tradition. Continued neglect of the emotions' political import is not merely a case of historical inattentiveness but a significant challenge to both neo-republicanism and constitutional patriotism’s sustainability as political projects. This is particularly true if we take seriously their desire to engage with, and influence, concrete political events, as I believe we should, given Philip Pettit’s work with former Spanish Prime Minister, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, and Jürgen Habermas’s ongoing engagement with the future of the European Union. Yet the contemporary literature, suffering from what I call an affective deficit, largely fails to account for this emotional dimension of virtue and thus for a central component of republican thought. Building on the theory of emotives developed by historian William Reddy in 'The Navigation of Feeling: A Framework for the History of Emotions' (2001), and through a series of close readings of republican political philosophy from the eighteenth century, I develop a theory of affective practices in order to provide interpretations of Montesquieu on fear; Diderot on despair and respect; and Rousseau on love and sympathy. Through these explorations, we may better understand how the passions, and a “re-politicized” sense of civic virtue, are, and ought to be, employed in the pursuit, maintenance, and critique of republican politics by its contemporary defenders and detractors alike, particularly in the work of Habermas and Pettit.

Research Interests:

Early modern and modern political thought, with an emphasis on the Enlightenment and counter- Enlightenment; affect and emotion; citizenship; cosmopolitanism, nationalism, and patriotism; democratic and anti-democratic theory; feminist political theory; politics and literature; republican political theory; sovereignty; stoicism

Teaching Interests:

History of political thought; American political thought; citizenship; classical political thought; democratic theory; Enlightenment political thought; feminist political theory; international political theory; liberalism; politics and literature; republican political theory; social contract tradition

Nathan Gonzalez - International Relations , Comparative Politics

International Relations , Comparative Politics
Website:

Cory Charles Gooding - American Politics, Comparative Politics, Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

American Politics, Comparative Politics, Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
CV:
Contact Info:

Cory Charles Gooding University of California, Los Angeles Political Science 4289 Bunche Hall Los Angeles, CA 90095 United States EMAIL: cgooding@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

Who is We? The Impact of Social Context on Group Consciousness and Political Incorporation among Afro-Caribbean Immigrants in the Obama Era

Dissertation Summary:

The increasing size of the black immigrant population continues to warrant a greater understanding of how this group impacts both the racial and political landscape of the United States. The existing research on the incorporation of Afro-Caribbean immigrants has found that transnational home country ties encourage ethnic identification and limits the political incorporation of first generation immigrants by providing a psychological exit strategy from American society and politics. Few studies, however, have investigated how social context impacts the incorporation of Afro-Caribbean immigrants. This study engages in a comparative analysis of Afro-Caribbean immigrants in New York and Los Angeles to examine the effects of a large co-ethnic community on group consciousness, attitudes towards Barack Obama and political incorporation. The research program relies heavily on 71 in-depth interviews conducted in New York and Los Angeles with first and second generation black immigrants from Jamaica and Trinidad, as well as community leaders that serve these communities. Survey data from the National Politics Study and the UCLA 2012 Post-election survey is also used to identify national trends. This study contributes to the literature by identifying the impact of social context on identity and group consciousness. It also provides an analysis of how Afro-Caribbean immigrants perceive and engage race and politics in an era that has been termed post-racial.

Research Interests:

Racial and Ethnic Politics; American Politics; Comparative Politics; Political Theory; Africana Studies; Caribbean Politics; Immigrant and Ethnic Minority Political Incorporation; Political Behavior; Citizenship and National Belonging; Critical Race Theory; Public Opinion; Black Politics; Qualitative and Interpretive Methodologies; Survey Research and Analysis

Teaching Interests:

Citizenship and Political Behavior Race Relations in American Politics and Culture Race, Religion and American Politics African American Political Thought

Emily Rachel Hallock - Political Theory

Political Theory
CV:
Contact Info:

Emily Rachel Hallock UCLA Political Science EMAIL: hallock [at] ucla . edu Curriculum Vitae Homepage

Dissertation Title:

Between Anarchy and Leviathan: A Return to Voluntarist Political Obligation

Dissertation Summary:

No democratic theory can do without a theory of political obligation, yet scholarship on obligation is in chaos. Political obligation, as a voluntarily-assumed requirement to obey, is essential to state legitimacy, yet individuals do not voluntarily assume obligations in numbers sufficient to ground legitimacy claims. In response to this paradox, most scholars argue that we must obey on non-voluntary grounds, while philosophical anarchists deny that such an obligation exists at all. I contend that the widely accepted goal of political obligation – a general, comprehensive requirement to obey the state – generates this stalemate, inhibits analysis of democratic self-government, and inaccurately depicts obedience in practice. Instead, I argue, political obligation should be seen as a voluntary type of ‘binding requirement’ to take political action, a broader category that also includes non-voluntary duty. Voluntarist obligation is incompatible with a general, comprehensive requirement to obey. Instead, political obligation concerns the ability to voluntarily create our political relationships and affect the institutions and rules that apply to us. This approach yields a more accurate analysis of normative political requirements than obedience-centered theories, and discredits the philosophical anarchist’s attack on obligation and legitimacy. My account emphasizes the crucial yet often-overlooked voluntarist dimension of liberal-democratic politics. The voluntary acts of state agents develop, interpret, and enforce laws and public policy, and ordinary individuals influence the state both by voluntarily exercising their rights, and through other forms of voluntary political action. I contend that political freedom is a matter of self-government, and therefore requires the power to shape our own political bonds. Because my account connects voluntarily-assumed requirements to act to the conditions of collective political self-determination, it provides the foundation for democratic self-government missing in existing accounts.

Research Interests:

Democratic theory, 19th and 20th-century political theory, Continental theory, Constitutionalism, Legal theory, American political development, Citizenship, Public law, Political action and participation, Responsibility, Social and distributive justice

Teaching Interests:

History of political thought, Constitutional and public law, American political development and government, Political ethics, Citizenship, Justice and political responsibility, Contemporary and Continental theory, Ancient Greek theory

Galen E. Jackson - International Relations, Comparative Politics

International Relations, Comparative Politics
Contact Info:

gjack@g.ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

A Lost Peace: Great Power Politics and the Arab-Israeli Problem, 1967-1979

Dissertation Summary:

My dissertation focuses on the question of why the United States and the Soviet Union were unable to cooperate to achieve a resolution of the Arab-Israeli dispute during the period following the June 1967 Six-Day War until the signing of the 1979 Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty. I argue that in power political terms a settlement of the Middle East conflict would have been in the interest of both superpowers and that substantively Washington and Moscow held quite similar views about how the problem needed to be solved. More important, given the Arab-Israeli dispute’s political salience in world affairs, a comprehensive settlement could have been the touchstone of U.S.-USSR détente. In other words, my dissertation deals fundamentally with what continued to drive the Cold War at a time when a lessening of international tensions seemed possible. In examining these major questions, I explore the significance of several variables, including mistrust; the role played by the Arabs and Israelis; domestic political constraints; and offensive realist impulses.

I argue that by as early as 1970, and certainly by late 1973, a joint superpower approach to the problem was possible. The Soviets by this time were willing to press their Arab clients in a moderate direction and to help guarantee a final settlement. The problem, therefore, lay mainly on the American side. In part, U.S. officials were limited in their ability to accept the USSR peace program by domestic political realities. These considerations, however, were mainly important in tactical terms and, thus, the real obstacle to superpower cooperation in the Middle East was Washington’s desire to make geopolitical gains in the area at Moscow’s expense. My findings have significant implications for international relations debates concerning great power politics and the influence of domestic politics on foreign policy decision-making.

Research Interests:

Research Interests:

My work combines theory and historical methodology to examine major conceptual questions in world politics. In particular, I am interested in how the structure of the international system influences foreign policy decision-making, the interaction between domestic politics and strategic objectives, and how leaders attempt to deal with public opinion constraints when conducting statecraft. My future research will investigate the political effects of nuclearization, specifically in the case of Israel.

Teaching Interests:

Teaching Interests:

I have worked as a teaching assistant for courses on international relations theory, U.S. foreign policy, the causes of war, and the great power politics of the Middle East. I am interested in teaching classes on any of these topics and would also like to teach courses on nonproliferation and nuclear security studies. My basic approach would be to combine conceptual perspectives in the field with empirical studies of specific cases, with the objective of stimulating student thinking about the key assumptions, strengths, and weaknesses of the major theories in international relations.

Jeff Jackson - Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
Contact Info:

Jeff Jackson University of California, Los Angeles Department of Political Science 4289 Bunche Hall Los Angeles, California 90095 EMAIL: jjack32@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

From Deliberation to Participation: John Dewey's Challenge to Contemporary Democratic Theory

Dissertation Summary:

My dissertation uses John Dewey's pragmatist philosophy to lead contemporary democratic thought away from the principles endorsed by deliberative democracy.  Dewey and pragmatism have been widely cited as providing intellectual support for deliberative democracy, but I argue that Dewey's thought can effectively expose shortcomings in deliberative democracy, and can help turn democratic thought toward the model of participatory democracy (which is widely believed to have been incorporated by deliberative democracy).  Dewey associates democracy with the possibilities for individuals to participate in the governing of their lives, and he highlights how these possibilities are affected no less by social and economic inequality than by political institutions, and how political institutions themselves cannot be isolated from the effects of social and economic inequality.  On Dewey's terms, then, democracy involves a continuous process of overcoming interrelated social and political obstacles to individual self-government, rather than the achievement of a particular kind of deliberation within political forums.  Deliberative theorists, by contrast, must isolate the political and social realms when they indicate that deliberative reason-giving in political forums will neutralize the effects of unequal social status.  Dewey traces the deficiencies of current political debate to these unequal social conditions, and I show how this leads him to endorse non-deliberative practices that seek to overcome social inequality by compelling concessions from advantaged social interests.  Participatory democrats have themselves focused on social democratization rather than on improving policy deliberation, and I show that these thinkers can draw on Dewey's analysis to illustrate how a commitment to specific deliberative practices diminishes democratic theory's capacity to account for the effects of unequal social status on political interactions.  I thus argue that deliberative democracy has not incorporated participatory democracy, and that participatory democracy, when informed by Dewey's insights, is a more suitable model of democratic thought for our unequal social conditions.

Research Interests:

Contemporary democratic theory, American pragmatism, Continental political theory, philosophy of education, Frankfurt School critical theory, poverty, universal basic income, Marxism, psychoanalysis, participatory budgeting, multiculturalism, globalization

Teaching Interests:

History of political thought, American political thought, politics of education, 20th century political theory, ancient Greek thought, liberalism, Continental political theory, democratic theory, American political development and government, game theory

Angela Ju - Comparative Politics, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

Comparative Politics, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
CV:
Contact Info:

University of California, Washington Center
1608 Rhode Island Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036-3206
angelaju[at]ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

Ethnicity in a Mythical Racial Democracy's Metropolis: Ethnic Identity and Politics in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Dissertation Summary:

My dissertation examines why different immigrant groups, particularly those that do not currently face much economic discrimination, on average, choose different strategies of political assimilation by the third generation.  The answers to this question are important to understanding the political integration of not just high-income immigrant groups but low and middle-income immigrant groups as well.  The primary argument that I make in this dissertation is that reactive ethnic and racial identification often explain political behaviors and attitudes among immigrant groups.  First, I argue that reactive ethnicity (membership in a relatively exclusive ethnic group experiencing discrimination) is associated with ethnic voting.  Second, consistent with and extending Mary Waters’ (1996) argument, I argue that non-white immigrant groups are more inclined to support race-based government measures, such as racial quotas for university admissions and government jobs that benefit other non-white groups because of personal experiences and awareness of racial discrimination in society.  

Research Interests:

Comparative Race/Ethnicity, Gender, International Migration, and Politics in North and Latin America; Political Sociology; Social Determinants of Health; Mixed-Methods Research Designs; Urban Politics; Law and Inequality

Teaching Interests:

Introduction to American Politics;Introduction to Comparative Politics; Latin American Politics; Comparative International Migration; Comparative Policy Responses to HIV/AIDS in Latin America and the United States; The Practice of Fieldwork; Qualitative Methods

Anita R. Kellogg - International Relations, Methods

International Relations, Methods
CV:
Contact Info:

arkellogg@g.ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

"How the Power of Business Affects the Commercial Peace: Commercial Interests, Economic Interdependence, and Militarized Conflict"

Dissertation Summary:

On balance, large-n studies have supported the thesis that economic interdependence reduces interstate militarized disputes. These analyses, however, have yet to investigate the causal mechanism by which commercial elites influence foreign policy. My dissertation establishes the importance of the relationship between the public and private sector to bilateral trade and conflict. Detailed process tracing studies of the Colombia - Venezuela and China - Japan rivalries demonstrate that the paths used by commercial elites to influence national policy allow the private sector to affect security decisions towards those countries where their economic interests are at stake. A large-n analysis tests the interaction of business’s leverage on policymaking and economic interdependence on the probability of militarized disputes. These results show that the pacific effects of economic interdependence are strongest when both dyadic partners have domestic alliances between the business community and government policymakers. The culmination of my research is a theoretical framework incorporating a domestic theory of trade within the traditional commercial peace argument. Doing so, provides long overdue specificity on the conditions under which economic interdependence would be more or less likely to reduce militarized conflict.

Research Interests:

My primary research interests are the complex interactions of domestic level economic and political factors with interstate relations, particularly in the domains of militarized conflict and economic cooperation.

Teaching Interests:

I am interested in teaching courses on international security, foreign policymaking, international and comparative political economy, as well as the integration of quantitative and qualitative methods. Additionally, due to my fieldwork and research experiences in Latin America and East Asia, I would enjoy teaching courses on the politics and economics of these regions.

Carrie LeVan - American Politics, Methods, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

American Politics, Methods, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
Contact Info:

clevan601[at]gmail.com

Dissertation Title:

Neighborhoods that Matter: How Place and People Affect Political Participation

Dissertation Summary:

This dissertation asks: Do the characteristics of a neighborhood influence interaction between neighbors, and do these encounters affect individual political participation? I use three large-scale quantitative studies to examine these questions. The first study uses a random sample of registered voters in Los Angeles County and shows that voters who live near other voters are more likely to participate, but that this effect is dependent on the socio-demographic characteristics of an individual’s neighborhood. The second study uses data from a field experiment conducted in low socioeconomic neighborhoods; it shows that randomly assigned GOTV contacts increases turnout for both the person contacted and his neighbors who were not contacted. The third study uses data from the Social Capital Benchmark Survey. Respondents in this nationally representative survey were mapped using a geocoding method and the physical features of their neighborhoods were coded using Google Maps images to show what effect the structural features of a neighborhood have on neighbor interaction and individual participation. These studies show that the socio-demographic and physical attributes of one’s neighborhood affect an individual’s participation, because these characteristics of place provide opportunities for neighbor interaction.

Research Interests:

Research Interests:

I specialize in Political Behavior, Political Participation, Political Geography, and Social Networks in the United States. Specifically, I am interested in how the characteristics of one’s environment affects her political behavior. I use a mix of methodological approaches in my research, including: field experimentation, survey analysis, geographic information systems, and qualitative data collection.

Teaching Interests:

Teaching Interests:

I recently taught a seminar that I designed called “Participation and Equality.” The seminar challenged students to examine whether or not representative participation is necessary in order to have representative government. I am prepared to teach the following courses: Introduction to American Politics, Political Participation in America, Elections in America, Introduction to Race, Ethnicity & American Politics, Suburban/Urban Politics, American Political Geography, Public Opinion, and Introduction to Research in Political Science. In the Fall, I will be teaching a graduate course called “Teaching Political Science.” It is a course designed to help first-time Teaching Assistants learn how to be effective instructors. (Sample Syllabi available upon request).

Dov H. Levin - International Relations, Comparative Politics, Methods

International Relations, Comparative Politics, Methods
Contact Info:

Dovlvn@ucla.eduDovlvn@Yahoo.com

Dissertation Title:

"George Washington Must Go": The Causes and Effects of Great Power Electoral Interventions

Dissertation Summary:

This study assesses the causes and effects of partisan electoral interventions in the elections of other countries done by the great powers. Such interventions have been a quite common phenomenon extending back to the beginnings of competitive elections and even including the 1796 U.S. Presidential Elections. Since World War II electoral interventions have become quite common: a dataset I constructed of U.S. and Soviet/Russian electoral interventions between 1946 and 2000 finds that there were such interventions in approximately one of every nine competitive national level executive elections during this period. In today’s world, in which competitive national level elections are a significant feature of domestic politics in more than half of the states in the international system, partisan electoral interventions will likely become an even more prominent tool in the great powers’ arsenal.  Nevertheless, there has been little scholarly research on this topic.

In my dissertation I examined these two questions through a combination of statistical and qualitative methods. Among other things, I did a statistical analysis of the abovenoted  electoral intervention dataset  as well as of  election surveys done prior to particular cases of electoral  intervention (with relevant questions). I also did archival research on four cases in which electoral interventions were seriously considered by great power interveners. I find, for example, that electoral interventions are usually a quite effective tool for influencing elections, increasing the vote share of the preferred candidate/party by 3% on average- enough in many cases to determine the result. 

Research Interests:

Research Interests:

The causes and effects of partisan electoral interventions; Interventions (general); Regional war and peace; Nationalism, Ethnicity and conflict; Terrorism

Teaching Interests:

Teaching Interests:

(A non-exhaustive list of  possible courses): Introduction to International Relations/World Politics, Introduction to U.S. Foreign Policy, Interventions in World affairs, IR Theory, Terrorism and Insurgency, Causes of War and Peace, Introduction to Comparative Politics, International Relations of the Middle East.

Albert Ponce - Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
CV:
Website:
Contact Info:

Albert Ponce University of California, Los Angeles Political Science 4289 Bunche Hall, Box 951472 Los Angeles, CA 90095-1472 USA EMAIL: albertponce@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

War Against Migrants, Racial Violence in the United States

Dissertation Summary:

Globalization is celebrated as connecting the world’s population and linking once isolated economies with the rest of the world. Yet, this celebratory view conceals the role of nation-states in imposing violent measures against persons who transgress their territorial boundaries without authorization. While studies of the rise in violence along these areas has advanced our understanding of the effects for those who are not authorized to cross into or exist within the nation-state, there has been no systematic attempt to link how and why race dictates the levels of violence within U.S. institutions and society. This problematic advances a critical examination of the relationship between race and violence at the foundation of the U.S. nation-state institutions and society. Specifically, this dissertation analyzes how and why Mexican and Latino migrants have become contemporary targets of racial violence? Furthermore, how does racial violence function in establishing the commodified disposability of Mexican and Latino migrant labor? The goal is to establish a framework of racial violence which will provide the ability to investigate how and why specific populations are constructed as targets of the U.S. nation-state and its citizens. My critical ethnography of migrant day laborers in Los Angeles, California examines how racial violence is lived. This approach links the injurious reality of Mexican and Latino migrant workers to the development of a theory of racial violence. Making central the constitutive role of race and law in the production of state sanctioned violence in the U.S. advances our research on migrant workers in modern liberal democratic nation-states.

Research Interests:

Race and Politics, Latina/os and Law, Citizenship, Critical Race Theory, Immigration, Political Economy of Migrant Labor, Post-Colonial and Decolonial Thought, Latin American Political Thought, Race and American Political Development

Teaching Interests:

Race and Citizenship in the U.S., Chicana/o and Latina/o Politics, Immigration, U.S.-Mexico Relations, Political Theory, Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies, Critical Race Theory

Amanda Rizkallah - Comparative Politics, International Relations

Comparative Politics, International Relations
Website:
Contact Info:

amanda.rizkallah@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

Coffins and Castles: How Civil War Networks Shape Post-War Politics

Dissertation Summary:

This dissertation examines the longer-term consequences of civil war for stability, governance and political accountability. Focusing on the case of Lebanon, it investigates the effect of wartime militia control on the trajectory of post-war political development.  Within the same post-conflict country, why are some regions ruled by former warlords, while others experience more local democracy? Why do some regions experience persistent low-level violence in the post-conflict era while others appear stable?  I develop a theory in which territorial control during the war interacts with international intervention to create an opportunity for militias to establish patronage networks that can be repurposed as political machines in post-war politics. The displacement of civilian populations is a key mechanism in this long-term consolidation of control over territories.  I combine maps, data from Lebanon’s five post-war elections, results of a Lebanese wartime survey, and interviews from several months of fieldwork to test hypotheses.  Finally, I test the generalizability of the argument through case studies of several other territory-based civil wars outside the Middle East. The project provides insight into the relationship between territory, displacement, and post-war governance by investigating the mechanisms through which political elites capture the process of reconstruction for the purpose of building sectarian patronage networks.

Research Interests:

Research interests:

Civil war, political violence, international intervention in conflict, politics of displacement, post-conflict elections & development, democratization, Middle East politics

 

Teaching Interests:

Teaching interests:

Introduction to comparative politics/international relations/statistical methods, civil war, political violence, political economy of development, government and politics of the Middle East, Islam and politics, international intervention

Tyson Roberts - Comparative Politics, International Relations

Comparative Politics, International Relations
Website:
Contact Info:

Tyson Roberts Princeton University Department of Politics 130 Corwin Hall Princeton, NJ 08544 EMAIL: tlr22@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

Democracy, Development, and the International Political Economy: Political Institutions and Investment Financing Strategies in Sub-Saharan Africa

Dissertation Summary:

My dissertation explores how changes in the international political economy affect political change in Sub-Saharan Africa, in particular regime type (democracy vs. dictatorship) and economic development strategy (statist vs. capitalist). In the dissertation, I develop a game theoretic formal model to demonstrate the strategic interaction between African governments, who make political decisions in anticipation of their effects on the providers of foreign finance, and the allocations decisions of private investors and official donors, who respond to the political decisions of those African governments. In the empirical chapters I test the implications of the model using cross-national, time-series data, with both political outcomes and investment decisions as dependent variables. The tests include the use of an original data set to operationalize the economic strategy of governments as capitalist or statist.

Research Interests:

Research Interests:

The relationship between financial flows (from private investors and official donors) and political change in developing countries, including changes in economic policy and political institutions.

Teaching Interests:

Teaching Interests:

Comparative Politics, Comparative Political Economy, International Political Economy, Comparative Institutions, International Relations, International Organizations, African Politics, African Political Economy, African Development Policy, Politics of Economic Development, Politics in Developing Countries, Authoritarian Politics, Research Design, and Game Theory.

Gilda Rodriguez - Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
CV:
Contact Info:

Gilda Rodriguez Kenyon College Department of Political Science Horwitz House Gambier, OH 43022 USA EMAIL: rodriguezgm@kenyon.edu

Dissertation Title:

Translocal Citizenship: The Political Subjectivity of Indigenous Mexican Migrants

Dissertation Summary:

This dissertation proposes a reframing of the notion of citizenship through an examination of the practices of political membership and transnational governance of indigenous Mexican migrants to the United States. Traditionally, many indigenous communities in several Mexican states have been governed, with a high degree of autonomy, by local customary law, which requires that all adult members of the community participate in a rotating system of office-holding and communal labor. Since the 1980s, there has been an explosion in the migration of indigenous Mexicans to the U.S., where previous waves of migration had been predominantly mestizo (mixed-race). Once in the U.S., these indigenous migrants have found ways to continue participating in the governance of their communities from abroad: returning to their home communities when it is their turn to hold office or, more common in recent years, finding ways to fulfill their political obligations from the United States. This project presents the results of qualitative research—participant observation, in-depth interviews, and archival research—on the meaning of political membership for indigenous migrants from the state of Oaxaca residing in California. The political obligations derived from customary law and the migrants’ deep attachment to their ethnic identities in effect make it so that they are, primarily, citizens of an indigenous community, rather than of Mexico. Nevertheless, they are subject to the constraints of the nation-state on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. I argue that dominant conceptions of citizenship in political theory, as well as in everyday discourse, tend to be inextricably linked to the nation-state in ways that impede the recognition of identities and forms of political participation that come out of experiences of processes of globalization, including those of indigenous Mexican migrants. Although citizenship is an essentially contested concept, its various definitions commonly include things such as political activity and a sense of collective identity. However, access to these “other” features of citizenship is frequently predicated on formal membership in the nation-state. While citizenship, I posit, does require belonging to a political community, the latter has often been too narrowly defined. In this case study, the research subjects are citizens (to use their own terminology) of towns and villages in Oaxaca governed by customary law, but they have been forced by economic pressures to migrate to the United States. They have, however, managed to reconceptualize the boundaries of their own political community—which was never the nation-state—so that it exists in discontinuous spaces in two countries. Understanding citizenship in the 21st century requires rethinking political community to account for contemporary configurations of belonging and political activity, such as these, which exist beyond the nation-state.

Research Interests:

Citizenship, transnational politics, political subjectivity, immigration, feminist theory, critical race theory, race and ethnicity in the Americas, indigenous politics, border studies, pluralism, African American political thought, queer theory

Teaching Interests:

History of political thought, citizenship, contemporary political thought, feminist theory, immigration, Latino politics, race and ethnicity in the Americas, gender and the family, American constitutional law, Continental political theory

Liza Taylor - Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics

Political Theory, Race, Ethnicity, & Politics
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Contact Info:

Email: lizataylor@ucla.edu

Dissertation Title:

Thinking With and Through the Concept of Coalition: On what feminists can teach us about doing political theory, theorizing subjectivity, and organizing politically

Dissertation Summary:

My dissertation brings feminist theory to bear on a central concept within political science. Specifically, it advances two central claims. Firstly, that the concept of coalition operates as an organizing theoretical and political concept at the core of contemporary feminist theory. Secondly, that this concept proves instructive for political scientists who continue to treat coalition as a phenomenon to be explained only within the context of governmental decision-making bodies, and for political theorists who continue to rely on postmodern interpretations for delineating a post-Marxist vision of collective politics that adequately attends to the challenge of confronting difference within coalition. As I demonstrate across the dissertation, feminist theorists are at the forefront of scholarship attempting to move outside of these limited frames. After examining the limitations of scholarship on coalition within both political science and political theory (Chapters 1and 2), my dissertation develops four unique ways in which feminist theorists think with and through the concept of coalition. Whereas early feminists discuss coalition as a necessary and effective way for feminists to organize politically, over the past three and a half decades, feminists have appealed to the concept of coalition not only as a practical solution to questions related to feminist praxis, but also as a theoretical apparatus with which to examine a range of philosophical questions. Confronted with political questions related to organized group resistance across deep cleavages of difference, I develop a notion of politico-ethical coalition politics (Chapter 3). In attending to epistemological questions related to understanding and identifying systems of oppression and ontological questions related to identity and subjectivity, I develop notions of coalitional consciousness and coalitional identity (Chapter 4). In an effort to revisit methodological questions related to doing political theory, I explore the notion of textual coalitions as a model for feminist scholarship (Chapter 5). In addition to examining coalition as a mode of organized group resistance, feminist scholars think with and through the concept of coalition, enabling them to revisit and effectively work through some of the more difficult questions defining contemporary political thought.

Research Interests:

The politics of contemporary feminist theory, with special attention to feminist theorizations of coalition politics, women of color and Third world feminist theorizations of freedom, and the intersection of gender and multiculturalism.

Teaching Interests:

Canonical political theory, including introduction to political theory, ancient and medieval political theory, early modern and modern political theory, the history of modern thought, contemporary political theory, American political thought, and democratic theory; a variety of special topics in feminist political theory, critical race theory, and contemporary challenges to American democracy