WOOSEOK KIM

Hello! I am a PhD Candidate in Political Science and a Dual-Degree MA student in Statistics at the University of Michigan.

I study Comparative Politics, and the overarching goal of my research agenda is to understand democratic consolidation and erosion. To this end, I engage in the comparative analysis of institutions—with a current focus on party systems—to identify how political actors and institutions interact to shape policymaking outcomes and the performance of democratic institutions. I am particularly interested in studying distributive politics to understand the sources of political biases and inequality, and explain why certain countries fail to provide adequate levels of basic services to their citizens.

My dissertation focuses on the conceptualization and measurement of party system institutionalization—or the stability and predictability of interparty interactions—and its implications for democracy. As a part of the research project, I develop a novel measure of party system institutionalization using a Bayesian latent variable measurement approach. The measure covers 96 post-WWII democracies, which provides the most comprehensive measure of party system institutionalization to date. My dissertation committee is composed of Robert J. Franzese, Jr. (Co-Chair), Allen Hicken (Co-Chair), George Tsebelis, and Walter Mebane.

Prior to beginning my graduate studies, I received by B.A. from the University of Michigan in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics, and was stationed at the Korea Defense Intelligence Command to fulfill my mandatory military service requirements. I grew up in England and South Korea.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about my research. Thank you!