I am an associate professor in Cornell University's Department of Government.
My research focuses on Chinese and authoritarian politics. My first book, Cities and Stability: Urbanization, Redistribution, and Regime Survival in China, published by Oxford University Press, is available now. The New York Times profiled the book in January 2015.
My current project, Seeking Truth and Hiding Facts: Information, Ideology, and Authoritarian Rule in China, explores how and why authoritarian regimes rule as they do, integrating information, interests, and repression. I wrote about this research in two pieces for the Washington Post's Monkey Cage blog, "Here’s why it matters that China is admitting that its statistics are unreliable"--and--"The political implications of China’s stock market crisis." My article on the quality of Chinese GDP statistics, "Juking the Stats? Authoritarian Information Problems in China," was published by the British Journal of Political Science in January 2016.
My research has been supported by the Smith Richardson Foundation, Cornell's Institute for the Social Sciences & East Asia Program, Ohio State University's Mershon Center & Institute for Population Research, NASA, and Yale University's MacMillan Center, among others.
I host the ChinaLab podcast, discussing current research on China. Foreign Policy interviewed me, along with Bill Hurst and Jeff Wasserstrom, for our thoughts on the end of the Hong Kong protests on December 10th, 2014. Previously, All Sides with Ann Fisher had me on the program on October 15th, 2014 to discuss the protests in Hong Kong.