About

I am a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. I received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Political Science with a minor in Mathematics from the University of Pennsylvania in May, 2010. My research has been funded by Rackham Merit Fellowship and National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship.

I study international and comparative political economy (IPE/CPE) with a particular focus on the political economy of international migration. I am broadly interested in the causes and consequences of international migration and migration policies. Most of my projects seek to discover what international migration can reveal about existing theories of political economy including trade, fiscal, and monetary policy as well as the politics of natural resources.

My dissertation explores the puzzling association between high-value capital-intensive resources and mass immigration by looking at the effects of the Dutch disease on labor-intensive firms and their demand for protection through immigration policy and tariffs. I argue that mass immigration in resource-rich democracies is a policy consequence when a sufficient number of labor-intensive firms collectively lobby for more labor. Consistent with the new new trade theory, I use trade openness as a proxy for firms' dependence on labor in labor-scarce countries.

With regard to resource-rich autocracies, I argue that there are two channels through which immigration promotes the regime stability of resource-rich autocracies. First, autocratic rulers supply immigrants to their supporters’ enterprises (firms) in order to help them remain competitive. As supporters lose their non-resource income, autocratic rulers must give larger amounts of resource rents to their supporters in exchange for their loyalty. Second, autocrats seek to discourage native citizens from participating in the labor market. Employment opportunities lower the cost of collective action among potential challengers. Without civic organizations and local gatherings, native citizens will find it extremely difficult to mobilize themselves for a social revolution.

I conclude my dissertation with a paper explaining how immigration mitigates the authoritarian effect of natural resources for transitional democracies by protecting capitalists and landowners in the non-resource sector. Similarly, immigration promotes authoritarian regime stability by complementing an autocrat's discretion over natural resource revenues.

For contact information, my e-mail is available in my CV.