School of Humanities and Sciences


Showing 1-10 of 32 Results

  • Jacob Abolafia

    Jacob Abolafia

    Postdoctoral Scholar, Political Science

    BioI am a political theorist who writes on the history of political thought and critical theory, broadly construed.

    My dissertation (Harvard, 2019) “Penal Modernism before Modernity: Correction and Confinement in the History of Political Thought”, traced the treatment of the prison in political philosophy from Plato’s Athens to Jeremy Bentham’s London, with an eye towards our present carceral dysfunction. In addition to finishing a related manuscript on incarceration and the history of political thought, I am also engaged in research projects on political myths and political economy, as well as contemporary theories of rationality and society.

    I have published and taught on the history of political thought from classical antiquity to the present day. My ongoing research interests include social and political philosophy from early modernity through the critical theorists, Jewish and Islamic political thought, classical philosophy, and the intersection of social and political theory.

    After receiving my doctorate from Harvard’s Government Department, I was the 2019-2020 Harvard-Tel Aviv Post-doctoral Fellow at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Tel Aviv University. And, as of 2020, a Post-doctoral Fellow at the Van Leer Institute’s Polonsky Academy in Jerusalem. I am currently a Post-doctoral Fellow at the Stanford Civics Initiative, based in the Political Science Department at Stanford University.

    I hold a BA (Hons.) in Philosophy from Yale University (2010), and completed M.Phils in Political Thought and Intellectual History (2011) and Ancient Philosophy (2012) at Cambridge, where I was a Paul Mellon Fellow at Clare College until 2013.

    I live in San Francisco.

  • Gil Baram

    Gil Baram

    Postdoctoral Scholar, Political Science

    Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy research focuses on governmental decision-making during cyberattacks and strategic attribution-related policy. I work at the intersection of Cyber and International Relations, examining under what circumstances governments choose public acknowledgment of attacks or secrecy. Within my doctoral research, I developed a pioneering analytical model that allows decision-makers to predict their adversary’s response, supported by an original coded database of cyberattacks.

    My research interests encompass various aspects of cyber warfare and covert actions, including the impact of technology on national security, cyber and national security, the role of Intelligence agencies in cyberattacks, cyber threats to space systems, and how states act during cyberconflict.

  • Melissa Carlson

    Melissa Carlson

    Postdoctoral Scholar, Political Science

    BioI am a PhD candidate in the Department of Political Science at U.C. Berkeley, specializing in international relations, comparative politics, and methodology. Currently, I am a pre-doctoral research fellow at Stanford University's Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC). Broadly, my research examines the factors that influence the variation and intensity of partnerships between state governments and foreign militant groups. My dissertation develops an organizational theory of third-party provision of support: when foreign militant groups and state armed forces share similar organizational characteristics, they are more likely to form joint commands, carry out joint attacks, and provide each other with advanced weapons systems. By applying an organizational framework to this problem, I show that traits at this new level of analysis provide unprecedented analytic leverage in explaining patterns in international cooperation. My other research interests include informal cooperation between states and refugee interactions with smugglers, aid workers, and host governments. My work has been published in International Studies Quarterly, the Review of International Organizations, and the University of Chicago Law Review, among others.

    I draw from a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods to pursue my research interests. I have coded, compiled, and analyzed large-N datasets, including international events and web-scraped social media data. I have composed in-depth case studies that draw on semi-structured interviews and hundreds of primary and secondary source documents. I have conducted extensive field work in Jordan, Greece, and Iraq, including interviews with - and participant observation of - vulnerable migrants, aid workers, government officials, and Syrian militant group members. I have also designed and implemented survey and field experiments in Greece and Jordan using enumerators, text-messages, and Facebook. My regional expertise focuses on the Middle East, particularly Jordan, Syria, Iraq, and the Gulf. I am fluent in Jordanian and Syrian dialectical Arabic.

    I have worked with various aid organizations, including the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and Prolepsis, a Greek public health and nutrition aid organization, to design and implement ethnographic research programs and survey experiments. I have also worked as a professional translator for journalists and aid organizations in informal and formal refugee camps across the Greek mainland and islands. Prior to beginning my PhD at U.C. Berkeley, I worked as Public Information consultant for the IOM Iraq Mission in Jordan and Iraqi Kurdistan. In this capacity, I traveled to various camps for Syrian refugees and Iraqis displaced by ISIS in Ninewa, Dohuk, and Erbil, interviewing beneficiaries and photographing IOM aid distributions. I have continued working with the IOM Jordan as a research consultant, leading projects that range from tracing smuggling routes from Jordan to Europe to assessing the impact of Syrian refugee returns on local host community economies in Jordan. I have a M.A. in Political Science from U.C. Berkeley, and a B.A. in International Relations and Politics, Philosophy, and Economics from Claremont McKenna College.

  • Gemma Dipoppa

    Gemma Dipoppa

    Postdoctoral Scholar, Political Science

    BioI am a Post-Doctoral Fellow in Political Science at Stanford University. I received my PhD in Political Science from University of Pennsylvania in August 2020. My research interests include comparative politics, political economy and quantitative methods.

    In my research, I study the strategies used by criminal organizations to influence politicians, their capacity to drain public resources and the effectiveness of policies to fight against them. My dissertation examines the conditions explaining the expansion of criminal organizations to strong states, focusing on mafias’ ability to control and exploit migrants’ labor to strike alliances with local economic actors.

    Please visit my website for my cv and research: https://web.sas.upenn.edu/gemmad/