My research is motived by the following questions. How does state repression work on the ground? What kinds of dilemmas emerge for governments, agents of repression, and citizens who interact with coercive institutions? What are the larger forces influencing the use of state repression? In answering these questions, my research examines the use of police to repress citizens in authoritarian regimes and the effects of repression on the provision of law and order.
In addition to my book project, I have papers examining how police secure elections and the relationship between security sector engagement and election violence; the limits of trade linkage to improve human rights; dynamics between coups, dissent, and human rights violations; and the effects of repression on public perceptions of policing.
My work uses diverse methods like survey experiments, field research, qualitative interviews, and cross-national comparisons. My research is funded by the Institute for Developing Nations, The Carter Center, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation PhD Interventions Project, and the U.S. Institute of Peace.
I was the 2017-2018 pre-doc Election Monitoring fellow with The Carter Center and Institute for Developing Nations. I also consulted as a data analyst for the Carter Center’s international election observation missions in Kenya 2017, Liberia 2017, and Nepal 2017.
In addition to research and consulting on election observation mission, I am passionate about teaching and pedagogy. At Emory University, I designed and taught Repression and Control under Dictatorships with Jennifer Gandhi in Spring 2017. Before coming to Emory I taught for two years as a lecturer for the Department of Political Science and the Fulbright College Program in International Relations at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, where I received the Wally Cordes Teaching and Faculty Support Center’s New Faculty Commendation for Teaching Commitment. In addition to teaching at the University of Arkansas and Emory, I have taught courses in global diplomacy for the Summer College and Academy at Duke University and a seminar on American Politics at John Brown University.
My research and teaching interests stem from my international work. In 2004, I taught English in Zenica, Bosnia and partnered with local community leaders to rebuild homes for families displaced by the war. While there I had the opportunity to visit several cities that had been designated by the UN during the war as “safe areas” including Sarajevo, Gorazde, Bihac, and Srebrenica. I started working in Uganda in 2007 partnering with local and international non-governmental organizations to provide aid to internally displaced persons. In 2009 funded by the McCaleb Initiative for Peace, I returned to Gulu, Uganda with my partner, Kaitlin to research the role religious leaders played in pursuing peace and justice in areas impacted by the Lord’s Resistance Army. Our work won two journalism awards from the Missouri College of Media Association.
When not researching or teaching I can be found kayaking and rock climbing with my boys and our Husky and Weimaraner.
Political Science Department, Emory University, 1555 Dickey Drive, Tarbutton Hall, Atlanta, GA 30322