I am a graduate of Princeton’s Department of Politics with research and teaching interests at the intersection of international relations, comparative politics, and judicial processes. I am particularly interested in developing nation-states and how they internalize norms governing interstate behavior while at the same time transforming those norms to suit local exigencies.
My dissertation examines how domestic institutions in these developing states shape and constrain the judicial enforcement of international human rights commitments. Employing both macro-quantitative analysis and case studies from Colombia, Mexico, and South Africa, I argue that the degree of enforcement of international human rights law varies according to the success of domestic actors in manipulating the terms of litigation within their nation’s court systems. Where procedural rules are insulated from political actors, courts are better able to maintain an active enforcement role despite countervailing political pressures.
In addition to my graduate training at Princeton, I received my JD from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt Hall). At Boalt I focused on public international law and was a publications editor on the California Law Review. After completing law school and prior to beginning graduate studies at Princeton I worked as an associate attorney specializing in international law at the New York firm of Simpson, Thacher, and Bartlett. I also worked at New York Law School advising students on social justice law and practice. As of January 2015 I will join the faculty of the University of Puget Sound Department of Politics & Government as the Philip M. Phibbs Assistant Professor of International Relations.