I am a PhD candidate at the University of California, Irvine (UCI) and an affiliate with the Jack W. Peltason Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) and the Center for Critical Korean Studies (CCKS). My research focuses on public opinion, political behavior, theories of modernization, economic development, and democratic citizenship with an emphasis on East Asia.

My dissertation, Modernization and Cultural Democratization in East Asia, examines how and why people view democracy in systematically different ways in six countries: China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and Vietnam. Developing unique categories of democratic citizenship that measure the cognitive, affective, and behavioral patterns of individuals, I find that state-led economic development limited the growth of cultural democratization among middle class groups in all three dimensions. The results imply that the classic causality between modernization and democratization may not be universally applicable to different cultural contexts.

I also research on pedagogy and curriculum development in the political science discipline, particularly in regards to gender representation. My research in comparative politics and gender empowerment have been published, or are forthcoming, in Journal of Politics, PS: Political Science & Politics, and Japanese Journal of Political Science.

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