My research analyzes how global markets shape domestic politics and policy. I am interested in why and how politicians open markets, what determines the quality of regulation and property rights provision, and how ownership structure can be manipulated to gain political influence. More broadly, my research interests include the politics of finance and trade, asset ownership, property rights, democratization and representation, formal modeling, and political economy. All papers and replication files are available by request.

Published Work

"Governments as Borrowers and Regulators," forthcoming, Review of International Organizations

Co-authored with Timm Betz

Governments use financial regulations to reduce their borrowing costs, exploiting their dual role as borrowers and regulators, especially when they come under fiscal pressure from global markets.

"Democratic institutions and regulatory privileges for government debt," 2023, European Journal of Political Economy, Vol 79, 1-18, pdf, data, readme

Co-authored with Timm Betz

Democratic governments encourage and force institutional investors and banks to hold government debt, privileging their own debt but falling short of conventional understandings of financial repression.

"Politically Connected Owners," 2022, Comparative Political Studies, Vol 54, Issue 6, 561-595, pdf

Co-authored with Timm Betz

Because political connections provide substantial benefits to firms, political turnover prompts newly politically connected individuals to take, and disconnected individuals to cede, ownership of firms.

"Investment Agreements and the Fragmentation of Firms across Countries," 2021, Review of International Organizations, Vol 16, 755-791, pdf

Co-authored with Timm Betz and Weiwen Yin

Firms manipulate their structure of ownership to gain access to investment agreements.

"Biased Politicians and Independent Agencies," 2021, Journal of Theoretical Politics, Vol 33, Issue 3, 279-299, pdf

In issue areas where politicians are biased and citizens cannot perfectly observe the quality of agency reforms, citizens may assume that reform serves the politician's interest and punish him for any reform at all. Agency independence then comes more from informational challenges than from institutional design.

"Costly Signaling in Autocracy," 2021, International Interactions, Vol 47, Issue 4, 612-632, pdf

Co-authored with Robert J. Carroll

Using a simple signaling model, we show that rulers, who are concerned about perceptions of their strength, are more likely to use shows of force rather then economic transfers to undermine opposition.

"The Political Importance of Financial Performance," 2020, American Journal of Political Science, Vol 64, Issue 1, 152-168, pdf

Co-authored with Christina Zafeiridou

Political concern for financial performance limits the extent to which immobile assets can be targeted for taxation.

"Political Risk Insurance: A New Firm-Level Dataset," 2020, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Vol 64, Issue 5, 987-1006, pdf

Co-authored with Vincent Arel-Bundock and Clint Peinhardt

This paper introduces a dataset which includes information on over 5000 political risk insurance contracts issued by the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation.

"Foreign Financing and the International Sources of Property Rights," 2019, World Politics, Vol 71, Issue 3, 503-541, pdf

Co-authored with Timm Betz

By forming financial relationships with foreign firms, domestic firms gain indirect coverage from the property rights available to foreign firms under international law.

"The Absence of Consumer Interests in Trade Policy," 2019, Journal of Politics, Vol 81, Issue 2, 585-600, pdf

Co-authored with Timm Betz

Using data on consumption shares across product categories, this paper reports evidence that consumer interests have little impact on tariffs, even as countries democratize.

"The Politics of Redistribution, Property Rights, and Financial Openness," 2018, Economics & Politics, Vol 30, Issue 2, 181-210, pdf

In responding to investors, governments rely more on property rights provision (rather than limiting redistribution) in order to attract foreign investment when political institutions are more representative.

"Worker Influence on Capital Account Policy: Inflow Liberalization and Outflow Restrictions," 2018, International Interactions, Vol 44, Issue 2, 244-267, pdf

When labor groups have political influence, we observe more openness to capital inflows and less openness to capital outflows.

"Financial Liberalization: Stable Autocracies and Constrained Democracies," 2018, Comparative Political Studies, Vol 51, Issue 1, 105-135, pdf

Autocrats may use liberalization to stimulate the economy and stabilize their rule or to reduce redistribution in anticipation of democratization.

"Economic Sanctions and Demand for Protection," 2017, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Vol 61, Issue 5, 1073-1094, pdf

Sanctions restrict international trade flows, creating rents for import-competing producers, who are use these rents to pressure the government to implement protectionist policies.

Working Papers

Asset Mobility and Property Rights

I argue that the owners of mobile assets have the least to gain, and potentially much to lose, from property rights.

Political Institutions, FDI Inflows, and Economic Growth

Co-authored with Nathan Miller and Dennis Quinn

We argue that non-democratic countries with many unproductive firms gain more from FDI inflows.

The Politics of Competition Policy and Corporate Taxation

Co-authored with Jonghoon Lee

We find that non-democratic countries are more willing to tradeoff antitrust enforcement in exchange for revenues.

Partisan Preferences for Antitrust Policy

Co-authored with Ryan Brutger

We show that Republicans are more concerned about punishing big businesses and Democrats are more concerned about threats to democracy in considering antitrust regulations.

Managerial Succession and Organizational Performance: Evidence from Central Banks

Co-authored with Seung-Ho An

Research in public administration has emphasized the importance of employee succession for organizational performance. The study here draws on detailed data documenting succession among central bank presidents and inflation rates to assess how theories developed for employees apply to high-level managers. We present evidence consistent with a non-linear relationship between managerial succession and performance.