I am an Assistant Professor of Teaching in Political Science at the University of California, Riverside. My main research and teaching interests are European/EU politics, federalism, international organizations, governance and climate change. My dissertation, for which I have conducted fieldwork in Spain, Germany, Sweden and France, focuses on decentralization, interactive governance and income inequality in Europe. I also have an MA in European Studies from the University of Amsterdam, where I studied as a Jean Monnet Scholar of the European Union.
Comparative Political Institutions
International Law & Organization
Federalism, Regionalism, Decentralization
Explanations For Inequality
Economic and cultural factors are often presented as alternative explanations of Brexit. Most studies have failed to recognize the interplay between contextual economic factors and individual attitudes such as nativism and Euroscepticism. We argue that both economic and cultural factors matter to explain the outcome of the referendum. Economic factors are critical because they shape cultural attitudes. British citizens who live in economically depressed and declining districts are more likely to develop anti-immigrant and Eurosceptic views. These cultural grievances, in turn, explain support for Brexit. Using both aggregate economic and electoral data at the local level (380 districts) and data from the 7th wave of the British Election Study 2014-2017 panel, we find strong support for our argument that cultural grievances mediate the effect of long-term economic decline on support for Brexit. Our results have important policy implications, and suggest targeted economic policies are necessary to protect the “losers of globalization.” Published with Miguel Carreras and Shaun Bowler (forthcoming, published online March 4, 2019)
This paper aims at making a conceptual and theoretical contribution to understanding problem‐solving capacity in multi‐level contexts. To do so, I use the framework of structure, agency, process, and outcome to systematically discuss how the literatures of comparative federalism and multi‐level governance define and analyze problem‐solving. In discussing these literatures, I also examine how concepts such as integration, functional differentiation, self‐rule, and shared‐rule have important implications for problem‐solving. Policy challenges, such as climate change, require problem‐solving at various territorial levels. To demonstrate the insight from the two literatures and to offer comprehensive theoretical implications for effective problem‐solving capacity, this paper also provides illustrative examples of climate change action and environmental policy in Germany and the EU.
What are the distributional effects of power allocations between different levels of government in a country? This article examines whether having regions with more fiscal authority is significantly associated with higher national economic inequality in a country. The literature has long established the positive link between decentralized governance structures and varying levels of redistribution within a country. Redistribution is channel through which governments tackle inequality, and if redistribution is asymmetric across sub-national units, this is expected to increase inequality. Yet, there is a gap in the literature that systematically links these three components: decentralized governance, redistribution and economic inequality. By focusing on the fiscal aspect of decentralization, this article provides the theory and the causal mechanism for understanding why the decentralization levels of governance in a country should matter for income inequality. Using data measured along different components of regional authority, such as policy scope, fiscal autonomy and fiscal control, it explains why fiscal decentralization is expected to increase inequality, while predicting that the co-sharing of fiscal power between the regions and central government will to lead to lower inequality. The article tests this hypothesis with a case study on Spain.
Although national elections in Latin America are now described as reasonably free and fair by international observations teams, electoral processes are still affected by a series of malpractices (unequal access to the media and public resources, registration problems, vote buying). These irregularities negatively affect citizens' trust in elections. In this paper, we analyze the consequences of low trust in elections and exposure to vote buying practices on electoral participation in Latin America. Using data from the 2010 wave of LAPOP surveys, we find that perceiving that the election is unfair reduces the willingness to participate in national elections, but receiving material incentives during the campaign has the opposite effect of increasing electoral participation. We also show that the effect of trust in elections on turnout is larger in countries where voting is not mandatory. With Miguel Carreras
This article analyzes recent Turkish activism in the Balkans from the standpoint of political community. Drawing on but expanding Karl Deutsch's original concept allows us to explore the goals and actions of Turkish policy in the region. Multiple overlapping communities, some embryonic, can be seen to frame Turkish action. These include cultural/ethnic, security, European Union (EU) candidate, EU alternative, business and Islamic communities. Viewing Turkish policies this way offers analytical leverage that highlights the aims and dynamics of Turkish policies as well as possible outcomes of Turkish foreign policy actions in the Balkans.
“(Yeni) Küresel Eşitsizlikler ve Yönetişim Sorunları” (in Turkish) (New Global Inequalities and Governance Issues), 2013, in Ülke Deneyimleri Işığında Küresel Kriz ve Yeni Ekonomik Düzen (Global Crisis and the New Economic Order) (ed. Ziya Öniş, Caner Bakır and Fikret Şenses), İstanbul: İletişim Yayınları.
The book review of “Security Integration in Europe: How Knowledge-based Networks are Transforming the European Union” by Mai’a K. Davis Cross
Economic and cultural factors are often presented as alternative explanations of Brexit. This blog summarizes the article which appeared in Comparative Political Studies which explains why both actually matter and how they are related to each other.