I hold a Ph.D. in Political Science and MSc in Statistics at the University of California, Los Angeles. My research applies game-theoretic modeling, causal inference, and natural and survey experiments data to the study of political incentives in government Research and Development policy.
Government funding of research and development impacts countries’ technological development. Since the results of such policies typically emerge after the politician who funded the R&D stands for re-election, why do incumbent politicians make such investments? My dissertation research introduces three possible incentive-generating scenarios that could explain observed government R&D investment: rent-seeking, skill signaling, and pork-barrel politics.
I am also interested in the impact of new technology on collective action. In two projects co-authored with Dmitry Dagaev (Moscow, HSE), Anton Sobolev (UCLA) and Konstantin Sonin (University of Chicago), we investigated how communication technology has changed the architecture of social movements worldwide.
In the statistics field, I apply latent networks models to summarize International Relations data into an informative uni-dimensional measure of political connections (as opposed to current standards of policy similarity), (together with Robert Trager (UCLA) and Art Stein (UCLA) that can be applied in International Trade and International Conflict studies. We also develop dynamic network models of state-to-state relations.