1. "Ethnic Cabinet Diversity, Co-Ethnic Representation, and Attitudes Toward Government," published at Journal of Elections, Public Opinion, and Parties.
    PDF, Replication Files Abstract
    Does co-ethnic cabinet representation change how people respond to increasing ethnic cabinet diversity? Existing literature studies co-ethnic representation and cabinet diversity separately. I argue that the interaction between co-ethnic cabinet representation and ethnic cabinet diversity lowers government confidence and impacts feelings of ethnic fairness. Using a newly constructed dataset linking both the World Values Survey and the Afrobarometer to country-year measures of ethnic cabinet diversity, I find that interacting co-ethnic representation with ethnic cabinet diversity largely has the expected results. Country leaders should think carefully about how to manage cabinet appointments in order to improve attitudes toward government.
  2. "Gendered Ideologies, Gendered Perceptions: Do Nationalist Symbols and Gender Affect People's Perceptions of Politicians?" (with Patrick Cunha Silva), published at Politics, Groups, and Identities.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    Politicians and parties employ nationalist symbols to attract public support in elections worldwide. Robust evidence indicates that the public perceives women politicians as more liberal than men politicians. The association between politicians’ gender and perceived ideology, combined with the close relationship between nationalism and radical right parties, prompts the question: how do individuals evaluate women politicians when they use nationalist cues? To answer this question, we field a survey experiment in Serbia, a country with a long history of nationalist movements and a digraphic language with one of the alphabets associated with nationalism. Exploiting the Cyrillic alphabet and its association with nationalism, we find that respondents perceive women politicians who use Cyrillic as nationalist as much as men using the same symbol. However, these women are perceived as more nationalist than women and men politicians who do not employ Cyrillic. We then show that women and men respondents utilize these cues differently, indicating that the gender of nationalist politicians and members of the public may affect politician evaluations.
  3. "Sustaining and Supporting the Momentum of Enduring Pandemic Practices" with Sarah McCorkle, Cathy Box, and MC Dean, published at To Improve the Academy: A Journal of Educational Development.
    Abstract
    Faculty members impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic inadvertently participated in an historic, widespread, and rapidly occurring educational development phenomenon: the global shift towards emergency remote teaching. We surveyed faculty members (n=502) at four different institutions (a community college and a small, medium, and large university) and collected self-reported data on faculty members’ continued use of educational technology tools or teaching techniques that they adopted for the first time during the pandemic. Faculty respondents also shared their perceptions on why this change to their teaching was valuable. Approximately 62% of the faculty surveyed reported their continued use of an educational technology tool and 34% reported their continued use of a teaching technique or strategy. Higher education institutions must now consider the implications of these enduring pandemic practices, evaluate their effectiveness, and work to sustain the skill-building momentum of faculty who have invested time in adopting new technology tools and teaching techniques.
  4. "Tweeting Public Service Complaints," 2023. Journal of Quantitative Description: Digital Media 3: 1-49.
    Publisher Link (open access), Abstract
    Many local governments have added new methods to report public service complaints like submitting a complaint on Twitter, hoping to expand access to more constituents. But who submits Twitter complaints, and how do those complaints compare to those submitted using other methods? I collect data on complaints submitted to the City of St. Louis and use these data to show that complaints submitted on Twitter are primarily from wealthy white residents concerned about issues related to parks or to their commutes. These types of complaints differ sharply from those submitted using other methods. Hence this descriptive evidence lends credence to the idea that providing a Twitter account to submit complaints may not expand access to local government services as much as previously thought. Local governments may want to carefully consider how the methods that they provide to submit public service complaints could help to determine the types of complaints they are likely to receive.
  5. "Elite Responses to Ethnic Diversity and Interethnic Contact," published at Political Behavior.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    Do politicians who work alongside an ethnically diverse group of political elites improve their views toward ethnic outgroups? Political elites serve critical roles as elected representatives and public figures, but we do not know whether the act of political elites working together in an ethnically diverse environment impacts how they view ethnic outgroups. I argue that political elites work in a competitive environment wherein increased ethnic diversity can promote ethnic animosity and worsen outgroup views. However, elites share interests in maximizing resource distribution, which can lead to positive interethnic contact, improving outgroup views. I test these arguments by collecting original data from municipal government committee members in India. I show that elite outgroup views shift only to a limited extent in response to either increased committee diversity or engaging in interethnic contact. While interethnic contact shows the most promise for improving outgroup views, neither diversity nor contact alone seem to be solutions to intra-elite ethnic animosity.
  6. "Politicians’ Complaint Response: E-Governance and Personal Relationships," 2023. Governance 36(4): 1147-1164.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    When do politicians respond to individuals’ public service complaints? Technological solutions — termed e-governance — have been shown to help increase responsiveness in some developing nations where they serve to connect individuals, politicians, and bureaucrats for the first time. I argue that in country-contexts like India, where personal connections to bureaucrats and politicians are common, politicians are less responsive to complaints registered with e-governance systems than to complaints delivered via personal connections. Using data from public complaints, complaint responses, and field interviews in Delhi, I show that politicians are not responsive when complaints submitted to e-governance systems increase, but that they are responsive to complaints submitted to them through personal connections. This result suggests that the introduction of an e-governance system does not necessarily increase government performance. Politicians are incentivized to be more responsive to complaints registered directly with them because those complaints are more likely to generate electoral benefits.
  7. "Ethnic Representational Priorities and Political Engagement in Deeply Divided Societies," 2022. Nations and Nationalism 28(3): 777-787.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    When do individuals in deeply divided societies participate in political activities aimed at increasing ethnic representation in cabinet ministries? I develop a cost-benefit framework to explain political engagement based on individuals’ ethnic group membership and preferences for descriptive and substantive representation in cabinet ministries. Drawing on an original survey in North Macedonia, I find that ethnic Macedonians who value substantive representation are more likely to attend public meetings compared to Macedonians who value descriptive representation, but that the opposite is true for ethnic Albanians. I also consider how willingness to attend public meetings changes when individuals value both descriptive and substantive representation. The results suggest that policy makers cannot assume that all members of the public have the same motivations for arguing for increased representation.
  8. "Perceptions of Partisanship in Local Television News," 2022. Electronic News 16(1): 3-17.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    People turn to local media for information during crises such as the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). What factors impact media consumers’ decisions about which local television news broadcast to watch? This study argues that media consumers infer the partisanship of local television affiliates — judging local Fox and NBC news broadcasts to be right and left slanted, respectively, based on their perceived associations with Fox News and MSNBC. Using the results from a representative survey of Americans (N = 5,461), the study demonstrates that local Fox and NBC viewers are significantly more likely to watch Fox News or MSNBC. As a result, watching local Fox is associated with less coronavirus risk because media consumers choose local Fox believing that it will align with their existing conservative views. This study demonstrates the importance of the perceptions of local news partisanship in influencing the consumption of critically important local crisis news.
  9. "Can Policy Responses to Pandemics Reduce Mass Fear?" (with Michael Bechtel and Margit Tavits), published at Journal of Experimental Political Science.
    Publisher Link (open access), Abstract
    To successfully address large-scale public health threats such as the novel coronavirus outbreak, policymakers need to limit feelings of fear that threaten social order and political stability. We study how policy responses to an infectious disease affects mass fear using data from a survey experiment conducted on a representative sample of the adult population in the United States (N=5,461). We find that fear is affected strongly by the final policy outcome, mildly by the severity of the initial outbreak, and minimally by policy response type and rapidity. These results hold across alternative measures of fear and various subgroups of individuals regardless of their level of exposure to coronavirus, knowledge of the virus, and several other theoretically relevant characteristics. Remarkably, despite accumulating evidence of intense partisan conflict over pandemic- related attitudes and behaviors, we show that effective government policy reduces fear among Democrats, Republicans, and Independents alike.
  10. "Completing the Research Article Writing Process in an Introductory Course," 2022. Journal of Political Science Education 18(1): 35-51.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    How well can students exposed to political science for the first time work through the research article writing process? Previous research has introduced selected research article writing skills to students in introductory courses, but has not studied whether students in such courses can complete the entire process of writing and revising a research article. I re-designed an Introduction to Comparative Politics course based on the research article writing process. I hypothesized that students would make major gains in article writing skills and develop a proficient ability to write each research article component. Using a pre- and post-test design along with rubrics for each part of the research article, I found support for my hypotheses. Students reported large increases in confidence and ability to handle research article writing tasks as a result of the course and demonstrated proficiency on more than two-thirds of rubric items. These results suggest that research article writing tasks are appropriate for students in introductory courses and that their presence can help effectively introduce students to the discipline. I also provide suggestions for ways to implement parts of this course design in traditional, large introductory course settings.
  11. "Signaling Democratic Progress Through Electoral System Reform in Post-Communist States" (with Patrick Cunha Silva), 2022. Political Research Quarterly 75(4): 1037-1050.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    The international community invests heavily in democracy promotion, but these efforts sometimes embolden leaders not interested in true democratic reform. We develop and test a formal model explaining why this occurs in the context of electoral system reform --- one of the most important signals of democratic quality. Our formal model characterizes leaders as either truly reform minded or pseudo-reformers, those who increase electoral system proportionality in order to receive international community benefits while engaging in electoral fraud. We hypothesize that the international community will be more (less) likely to detect fraud when leaders decrease (increase) proportionality, regardless of whether there is evidence of numerical fraud. Using a mixed-methods approach with cross-national and case study data from post-Communist states, we find that the international community is generally less likely to detect fraud following an increase in proportionality and vice versa. We suggest that democracy promoters over-reward perceived democratic progress such that pseudo-reformers often benefit.
  12. "Small-Scale Civic Engagement with Big Impacts," 2022. PS: Political Science and Politics 55(2): 389-391.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Abstract
    I describe a series of small-scale civic engagement activities applicable across subfields, versions of which can be relatively easily integrated into existing course designs without requiring extensive additional time or resources. These activities focus on local community engagement as a way to help students to more effectively relate political science topics to community issues, to develop tools to solve common public policy problems, and to increase their understanding of individuals with different backgrounds and life experiences. This article is intended to provide a jumping off point for instructors beginning to teach civic engagement, while simultaneously helping them avoid common pitfalls associated with short-term civic engagement projects.
  13. "Citizen Responses to Ethnic Representation," 2023. Political Studies 71(2): 418-439.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    Can country leaders improve citizens' ethnic outgroup views by changing ethnic representation in government? Years of pressure from the international community calling for leaders to make particularly their cabinets more ethnically representative seems to suggest that ethnic representation — conceptualized as descriptive and substantive representation and ministerial cooperation — is key to improving citizens' outgroup views. I argue that increasing ethnic representation influences majority and minority citizens differently: minority citizens' outgroup views will become more favorable, while majority citizens' views will worsen. Using a pre-registered vignette experiment with ethnic Albanians and Macedonians in North Macedonia, I show that ethnic representation does not provide the improvements in outgroup relations that many have hoped. Both groups' affect toward and perceptions of the cabinet change somewhat, but increasing ethnic representation does not improve overall outgroup attitudes. These results suggest that ethnic representation alone does not lead to more productive interethnic relationships.
  14. "Anomalous Responses on Amazon Mechanical Turk: An Indian Perspective" (with Sunita Parikh), 2021. Research and Politics 8(2): 1-4.
    Publisher Link (open access), Replication Files, Abstract
    What can researchers do to address anomalous survey and experimental responses on Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk)? Much of the anomalous response problem has been traced to India, and several survey and technological techniques have been developed to detect foreign workers accessing U.S.-specific surveys. We survey Indian MTurkers and find that 26% pass survey questions used to detect foreign workers, and 3% claim to be located in the United States. We show that restricting respondents to Master Workers and removing the U.S. location requirement encourages Indian MTurkers to correctly self-report their location, helping to reduce anomalous responses among U.S. respondents and to improve data quality. Based on these results, we outline key considerations for researchers seeking to maximize data quality while keeping costs low.
  15. "Do Peers Respond? Attendance and Critical Events," 2021. British Politics 16(4): 456-468.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    What motivates Peers to attend legislative sittings? Sitting attendance is a symbolic way for legislators to show citizens that they are being productive and hence is often explained by electoral motivations that Peers lack. I argue that Peers make decisions to attend sittings when critical events threaten their position in the legislature. Attending at these times --- namely after scandals and House of Lords reform debates --- is an attempt to counteract negative impressions about the House and its members. Other critical events that may impact elected legislators such as terrorist attacks and natural disasters should have no impact on Peers attendance. Using a newly compiled dataset on attendance and critical events, I show that Peers respond by increasing attendance only after House of Lords reform debates in either House; attendance after scandals, natural disasters, and terrorist attacks is unchanged. This suggests that Peers are responsive in only the most urgent cases: when they are in the spotlight and the future of the House is on the line. More broadly, I offer the first empirical investigation of symbolic responsiveness among unelected legislators and show that there are some situations where said legislators feel the need to respond.
  16. "Technology and Collective Action Event Size: Lessons for India," 2021. Studies in Indian Politics 9(1): 118-123.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Abstract
    Events are a form of geographically and temporally focused collective action aimed at making broad social or political claims. Event attendance matters for how much impact the event has, but estimating the number of event attendees is quite difficult. Political scientists have recently developed methods for detecting event size using social media data from technology-based sources. These methods have been used to estimate event size in some contexts, but the Indian case presents special challenges that make using technology-based data to estimate event size particularly difficult. Drawing on fieldwork during the 2019 Citizenship Amendment Act protests in Delhi, I find that strategic choices on behalf of both protesters and the government made estimating event size using technological data quite challenging. I then discuss some ways that event size measurement techniques can be adapted for the Indian context.
  17. "Western Political Rhetoric and Radicalization" (with Margit Tavits and Deniz Aksoy), 2022. British Journal of Political Science 52(1): 437-444.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Supplemental Information, Replication Files, Abstract
    Does anti-Muslim rhetoric by Western politicians breed radical attitudes among European Muslims? We explore this question by conducting an experimental study in Bosnia - a European democracy, where, unlike the rest of Europe, Muslims are neither immigrants nor socio-economically disadvantaged. This helps us clearly identify the radicalization potential of Western rhetoric alone, absent contextual factors such as social inferiority. Experimental evidence with Bosnian Muslims from five surveys (with a total N=2,608) suggests that rhetorical attacks on Islam by Western politicians do not strengthen individuals’ Muslim identity, cause higher levels of animosity toward the West, or lead to condoning the use of violence. We also find that pro-Muslim rhetoric, while increasing positive views of the West, does not affect individuals’ strength of Muslim identity or their radical sympathies. These results provide important implications for our understanding of sources of radicalization and for efforts to curb radical tendencies.
  18. "Ethnic Diversity in Central Government Cabinets," 2022. Politics, Groups, and Identities 10(2): 189-208.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Supplemental Information, Replication Files, Abstract
    Why is there so much variation in the ethnic composition of cabinets? Previous work has focused on cabinet policy alignment, largely overlooking the role of identity-based characteristics like ethnicity. I theorize that country leaders make ethnic cabinet appointments to gain political support, both when country-level ethnic diversity is high and when ethnic groups rely on leader decisions in order to receive resources. Cabinet appointments offer leaders a way to distribute resources while creating a credible commitment to remove these resources if ethnic group support wanes. I introduce a new cross-national time-series dataset of cabinet minister names from 149 countries from 1967 to 2017. Using novel methods from computer science, I code the ethnicity of cabinet ministers’ names and construct a cabinet diversity index for each country-year. After validating this measure, I find support for my hypothesis. Country leaders in reliant societies increase ethnic cabinet appointments seven to twenty-five percent over leaders in non-reliant societies. The results provide the first large scale cross-national analysis of the strategic ways in which leaders use cabinet seats to manage the distribution of resources.
  19. "Pick Your Language: How Riot Reporting Differs Between English and Hindi Newspapers in India," 2019. Asian Journal of Communication 25(9): 405-423.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Supplemental Information, Replication Files, Abstract
    Riot reporting is one aspect of newspaper coverage that can drive people into the streets in acts of collective protest or violence. Media observers and scholars have proposed that the language of Indian newspapers, be it English or vernacular, partially dictates the kinds of riot events reported and the quality of those reports. I tested whether this conventional wisdom holds by investigating the content of Indian riot coverage in the English Times of India and Hindu Hindustan. While Hindustan emphasized official statements and interviews with political parties, neither newspaper accurately represented the actual number of riots in their reporting. In fact, coverage in both papers followed predictable patterns likely driven by a new focus on selling newspapers at any cost in order to increase advertising revenue. This study contributes to a growing literature highlighting the similarities between media outlets and the degree to which their reporting is removed from actual events.
  20. "A Meta-Analysis of Natural Resources and Conflict," 2019. Research and Politics 6(1): 1-6.
    Publisher Link (open access), Replication Files, Abstract
    The relationship between natural resource wealth and civil conflict remains unclear, despite prolonged scholarly attention. Conducting a meta-analysis — a quantitative literature review — can help synthesize this broad and disparate field to provide clearer directions for future research. Meta-analysis tools determine both the aggregate effect of natural resources on conflict and whether any particular ways in which variables are measured systematically bias the estimated effect. I conduct a meta-analysis using sixty-nine studies from sixty-two authors. I find that there is no aggregate relationship between natural resources and conflict. Most variation in variable measurement does not alter the estimated effect. However, measuring natural resource wealth using Primary Commodity Exports and including controls for mountainous terrain and ethnic fractionalization all do significantly impact the results. These findings suggest that it may be worth exploring more nuanced connections between natural resources and conflict instead of continuing to study the overall relationship.
  21. "Regional Autonomy in Rich Regions: Evidence from Adjara, Georgia," 2018. Caucasus Survey 6(1): 18-41.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Supplemental Information, Abstract
    Previous models of individuals’ preferences for decentralization have focused on either economic or identity based motivations. In some cases, however, elites in rich regions with high inequality prefer decentralization contrary to their economic preferences. This paper proposes a model to explain these instances by focusing on the preferences of self-interested elites who manipulate a strong regional identity for personal gain. I develop the hypothesis that a strong regional economy, combined with a regional identity, provides the incentive for and the mechanism by which elites prefer decentralization. I test this hypothesis using the puzzling case of Adjara, Georgia, a rich region with high inequality and a strong regional identity where elites, contrary to expectations, pushed for decentralization. Results suggest that regional identities are used by elites in order to seize on a strong economy for personal gain. This motivates future study on the interaction between regional economies and identity.
  22. "International Tourism's Impact on Regional Autonomy: Evidence from 2004 EU Accession Countries," 2017. Tourism Economics 23(8): 1632-1661.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    The relationship between increased tourism and increasing regional autonomy is quite nuanced and understudied. This paper hypothesizes that only an increase in both regional air traffic and in international tourism will impact the level of regional autonomy. Using the period after ten countries were admitted to the European Union in 2004 as an example of a dramatic tourism increase, the paper finds that countries with increased tourism, but without regional airports, did not experience a sudden increase in their regional autonomy. In Poland, however, the large number of growing regional airports and increased tourism did provoke regions to argue with the central government for more regional autonomy. These findings contribute to a better understanding of how international interventions impact regional decentralization preferences.
  23. "Did Natural Resource Wealth Motivate Fighting in the Bosnian War?" 2016. Journal of International Studies 9(1): 27-43.
    PDF, Replication Files, Abstract
    The 1992 to 1995 Bosnian War was not a war begun over a conflict for natural resources. Instead, this study hypothesizes that the intensity of fighting during the War was positively influenced by the presence of high levels of natural resource wealth distributed throughout Bosnia. Drawing upon self-coded data for myriad measures of the intensity of fighting and natural resources in a given area of the country, we use multiple regression techniques as well as factor analysis to support the hypothesis and conclude that natural resource wealth was an important factor in influencing the course of the War. Natural resources both strategically deprived the opposing army from adequate land and water during the War and also ensured that high quality natural resource infrastructure and forest resources were available after the War ended. This research is unique in that it examines the importance of natural resources where fighting takes place.


Other Publications

  1. "Review of What Teaching Looks Like: Higher Education Through Photographs." 2023. Journal of Political Science Education 19(4): 737-739.
    Publisher Link, PDF
  2. "The Benefits of Early Student Involvement with Civic Engagement Programs" (with Anthony Franklin), 2023. The Political Science Educator 27(1): 76-79.
    PDF
  3. "Teaching Research, Writing, and Information Literacy: How to Handle Misinformation" (with Michele Calderon, Heather Katz, and Rachel Olsen), 2023. Political Science Today 3(3): 11-13.
    Open Access
  4. "You have an Academic Job Offer...Now What? Negotiating Advice from Two Perspectives" (with Lori Poloni-Staudinger), 2022. In Kevin Lorenz II, Daniel Mallison, Julia Marin Hellwege, Davin Phoenix, and J. Cherie Strachan (eds.) Strategies for Navigating Graduate School and Beyond Washington, D.C.: American Political Science Association.
    Open Access
  5. "Research Articles, Not Research Papers: Empowering Students Through Research Writing," 2021. In Daniel Mallison, Julia Marin Hellwege, and Eric Loepp (eds.) Handbook of Political Research Pedagogy Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 367-378.
    Publisher Link, PDF, Abstract
    Both students and instructors are frequently frustrated by research paper assignments because they involve only part of the research article writing process. I argue that integrating the entire article writing process into a course empowers students to work as political scientists, makes the discipline relevant, provides critical writing skills, and improves classroom climate. I discuss my journey developing courses based on the research article writing process, describing strengths and weaknesses of this approach. Additionally, I highlight research-based simulations as a key component of article writing that helps students understand the importance of political science. I encourage instructors to embrace the shift in thinking associated with teaching the research article writing process, the results of which substantially benefit students.
  6. "Department-Level Graduate Student Peer Teaching Workshops" (with Bryant Moy), 2021. The Political Science Educator 25(1): 6-8.
    PDF
  7. "Teaching Research, Writing, and Information Literacy" (with Julia Marin Hellwege), 2020. PS: Political Science and Politics 53(3): 588-590.
    Publisher Link, PDF