I am Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse (IAST) specializing in Political Economy and Political Methodology. I received my PhD in Political Science from the Government Department at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in 2019.
My research agenda focuses on corporate influence in politics via firm and employee activities. Corporations have an increasingly significant role in domestic and international politics, and understanding the different channels through which they shape politics, therefore, of growing importance. This novel agenda is made possible by the availability of big data on corporate political activity and my training in machine learning techniques and data science tools. In particular, my work evolves around three major themes.
First, I study why and to what extent employees align politically with their employer. Despite the fundamental role of employment for individual’s livelihoods, little attention has been given to how the workplace impacts employees’ personal donations to political candidates. In “Political Alignment between Firms and Employees in the United States: Evidence from a new Dataset”, published in Political Science Research and Methods, I use natural language processing to link big un-structured data on donations of employees and U.S. public corporations. I show that firm and employee partisan donations are highly correlated and significantly associated with occupation and firm characteristics. In “How the Workplace affects Employee Political Contributions” (under review), I use these original data to investigate the importance of the workplace in employees’ decisions to make political donations. I track the dynamic relationship between employee and corporate donations within 79 million firm-politician pairs over time and find that employees contribute more dollars to company-endorsed politicians in valuable and powerful positions.
Second, in In related joint work with In Song Kim and Lukas Wolters (both at MIT), we research the “Strategic and Sequential Links between Campaign Donations and Lobbying”. We offer the first large scale analysis of the direct link between corporate campaign donations and lobbying, two distinct political activities that have been mostly studied separately. Leveraging over 75 million lobbying reports and campaign contribution filings, we provide causal evidence that corporate donations result in large and short-term increases in the probability that the targeted politicians’ legislative activities are lobbied by the same firm. In sum, the findings of these papers question the common perception of donations as mere consumption or as a long-term investment strategy.
Finally, in work together with Oleksandr Shepotylo (Aston University), in “Political Uncertainty and Trade in Intermediate and Capital Goods: Evidence From Ukrainian Firms” (under review), co-authored with Oleksandr Shepotylo (Aston Business School) we investigate the role of political uncertainty for the international sourcing decisions of firms. Using unique Ukrainian firm-product-level data, we show that, in line with our theoretical model with heterogeneous firms, capital and intermediate goods are particularly responsive to trade policy uncertainty. Our novel measure of uncertainty, based on quantitative text analysis of business news, can easily be adapted to other cases of mutually exclusive policy options.
I am looking forward to teaching courses in International Political Economy, Money in Politics, and Quantitative Methods.