I am an Associate Professor of Political Science at Temple University and I co-direct the Certificate in Political Economy, a program of the College of Liberal Art. I am also a faculty affiliate of Global Studies and Asian Studies at Temple. I have served as a Global Order Visiting Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania's Perry World House. I am the recipient of a Fulbright Global Scholar Award (2020-2022) for multi-country research and international exchange.
My new book, Micro-Institutional Foundations of Capitalism: Sectoral Pathways to Globalization in China, India, and Russia (Cambridge University Press, 2022, Forthcoming) examines, in the context of global reregulation, the nation-specific sectoral politics of market governance and development. Leveraging in-depth fieldwork and qualitative and quantitative data, the book systematically compares cross-national and intracountry sectoral politics in China, India, and Russia historically and in the post-liberalization era. The research and writing are supported by prestigious grants and fellowships for multi-country fieldwork.
I am regularly invited to provide expert analysis and commentary, which you can find here. The Economist, Foreign Affairs, National Public Radio (NPR), Inside Higher Ed, The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, BBC World News, and other outlets have featured my research. I have testified in Congress in front of the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission and consulted for The Center for Strategic and International Studies. I have served as a member of the Georgetown Initiative for U.S.-China Dialogue on Global Issues. I currently serve on Fulbright's National Screening Committee for its various research scholarships.
My first book, China’s Regulatory State: A New Strategy for Globalization (Cornell University Press / Cornell Studies in Political Economy, 2011) examines China’s distinctive integration into the international economy across industrial sectors. China’s Regulatory State shows how and why the Chinese government combines market liberalization with sector-specific reregulation and industrial policy. I conducted research for this book as a Fulbright Scholar at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences' Institute of World Economics and Politics. My doctoral dissertation, on which my first book is based, was nominated by the U.C. Berkeley Department of Political Science for the Gabriel Almond Award for Best Dissertation at the American Political Science Association. China’s Regulatory State has been reviewed by numerous academic and policy journals.
My article in Governance: An International Journal of Policy, Administration, and Institutions, "State Capitalism, Chinese style: Strategic Value of Sectors, Sectoral Characteristics, and Globalization" reports research findings on the institutional foundations of capitalism in large, globalizing developing countries. Another article, "Nations or Sectors in the Age of Globalization: China's Policy Toward Foreign Direct Investment in Telecommunications" published in Review of Policy Research, examines the design and implementation of China's policy toward foreign direct investment in telecommunications, including analysis on developmental and security-oriented goals and domestic institutional and geopolitical implications. "China and India in the Age of Globalization: Sectoral Variation in Postliberalization Reregulation," an article published in Comparative Political Studies compares China and India's variegated paths toward globalization across industrial sectors.
The political economy of identity in the age of globalization is another major theme in my research agenda. I have studied the impact of domestic ideas and politics on free trade arrangements between small and large countries. A current project explores the evolution of national identity, authoritarian institutional legacies, and sectoral patterns of Taiwan's global economic integration in the context of China's political economic rise.
Other ongoing research investigates China’s foreign economic engagement and its political impact on the developing world. Additionally, I have conducted research on comparative democratization and authoritarianism, specifically the role of churches in mobilizing civil society when they do not have institutional access to political regimes in power.
Committed to methodological pluralism and the importance of letting research questions drive the use of research methods, I have written on and collaborated in academic efforts to highlight the theoretical and analytical value of comparative case research designs and in-depth fieldwork. I initiated, co-organized, and co-edited, with Francesca R. Jensenius and Akasemi Newsome, "Fieldwork in Political Science: Encountering Challenges and Crafting Solutions," a symposium in PS: Political Science and Politics on conducting in-depth fieldwork gathering qualitative and quantitative data in developing countries. The symposium also features essays by Chris Chambers-Ju, Jody LaPorte, Suzanne Scoggins, and Vasaundra Sirnate. The symposium is also featured in the PS's Virtual Issue: Navigating The Profession: Sage Advice From The Pages Of Ps. The symposium is included in the book, Navigating Political Science, published by the American Political Science Association.
I teach graduate and undergraduate courses in Political Science in my areas of research expertise. This include classes on the political economy of development, political economy of identity, globalization and the state, comparative politics of developing countries, development and globalization, Chinese politics and economy, and Evidence and Knowledge, a Political Science undergraduate major requirement, which surveys social science research methods. In addition to co-directing the Certificate in Political Economy, I am also the Political Science faculty coordinator for the Temple University General Education course Development and Globalization.
In recent years, I have conducted in-depth fieldwork in Asia, Mexico, and Russia. During summer 2017, I conducted research while based at the National Taiwan University as a visiting professor. I also lectured as a Visiting Professor at the Tecnológico de Monterrey in Mexico in 2014. During 2012-2014, I conducted research in China, India, and Taiwan with a Residential Research Faculty Fellowship awarded by the Institute of East Asian Studies, U.C. Berkeley; and served as Visiting Scholar at the Center for the Study of Law and Society of the U.C. Berkeley School of Law and Scholar-in-Residence in the Religion, Politics, and Globalization Program of the Institute of International Studies, U.C. Berkeley.
Prior to arriving at Temple, I served as a Hayward R. Alker Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Southern California’s Center for International Studies. I was also affiliated with the U.S.-China Institute. I received my Ph.D. in Political Science from U.C. Berkeley, and I am a former recipient of the David L. Boren Fellowship. I grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico and the San Francisco Bay Area. As an undergraduate at U.C. Berkeley, I served as an elected Senator of the Associated Students of the University of California.
When not doing research or teaching, I enjoy traveling the world and eating and cooking gourmet cuisine with my husband Robert C. Romano, a software engineer, and our children. My family and I worship at Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church and I serve on the Board of Fellows for Eastern University's Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership. I also enjoy running on city streets, hiking in neighborhood hills, browsing bookstores, and writing poetry.
Photo credit: Margo Reed Photo.