Welcome

I am a PhD Candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I study comparative politics.

My dissertation “The Role of Outgroup Trust on Voting Behavior in Ethnically Salient Contexts” is under the supervision of Matthew S. Winters (co-chair), Cara Wong (co-chair), Avital Livny, and Thomas J. Rudolph. It identifies how to mitigate the negative effects of ethnic voting on democratic consolidation by testing whether an increase in trust across ethnic groups can motivate individuals to vote across ethnic lines, in contexts where ethnicity is a salient identity. I argue in my dissertation that the detrimental effect of ethnic voting on democratic consolidation will be less prominent in contexts where individuals extend trust beyond their own ethnic groups (i.e., display high outgroup trust). I test my theory using comparative data from US and Myanmar populations, and existing survey data on sub-Saharan Africa. My survey experiment of Myanmar migrants in the US and Thailand is supported by University of Illinois’ Robert Ferber and Seymour Sudman Dissertation Awards for Survey Research.

In addition to my dissertation research, I have several co-authored research projects that examine immigrant incorporation and political participation across various contexts. The first project is a conceptual paper that typologizes migrant populations and discuss how this categorization impacts our understanding of migrant incorporation. The second paper uses original survey data collected in Singapore to examine transnational political political participation among migrants. Our latest project examines what citizens in Peru think about the enfranchisement of overseas voters. These studies have been supported by the Illinois Global Institute’s Migration and Refugees in Regional and Global Perspectives Initiative and by the Center for Social and Behavioral Studies at the University of Illinois. I, together with Matthew S. Winters and Yuan-Ning Chu, applied for and acquired the two research grants.

Prior to joining the PhD program at Illinois, I received my BA in International Studies and MA in Global Affairs and Policy from Yonsei University.