I am interested in the formation, persistence, and dissolution of political identities, the role of informal institutions, norms, and culture in politics, and in long run legacies of historical institutions. I also maintain an interest in anti-corruption research and work on good governance and government transparency. My research is situated at the intersection of comparative politics, political economy, and international relations.
I am currently finishing a book project on persistence of political identities beyond the demise of formal institutions and material conditions that originally gave rise to these identities. The book contributes to a fledgling research agenda on cultural legacies of historical institutions and aims to revive several important theoretical insights of the literature on political socialization. The book project draws on a natural experiment of history that divided a homogenous population of ethnic Ukrainians between Russian and Austrian empires, and I find that certain types of historically-rooted political identities are still today capable of negating the effects of formal institutions.
Almost all of my research combines multiple methods including experiments, archival and survey research, and interviews. Although I am particularly interested in Russian, post-Soviet, and European politics, my research is first and foremost question driven, and I have done fieldwork in China and India. In addition to the core research agenda on historical legacies I am also currently working on projects on formation of political loyalties in early Communist China and on persistence of electoral patterns in Spain. My work has appeared in The Journal of Law and Economics and Regulation and Governance. I hold a Ph.D. from Yale University.