I am an Assistant Professor in the Asian Studies Program at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa in Honolulu. As a political scientist, my work is located at the nexus of comparative politics and international relations, with a particular focus on the Asia-Pacific region. I have two streams of research dealing with security and with political economy. I am engaged in a number of projects looking at the relationship between security and economics, defense capacity building, regional institutional architecture, and Japanese security reforms using a mix of qualitative and quantitative approaches. I am also working on a book that looks at how the early stages of trade liberalization shape the preferences and political strategies of multinational firms through a cross-sectoral analysis of the Japanese political economy. I am the co-editor of two books: Linking Trade and Security: Evolving Institutions and Strategies in Asia, Europe, and the United States (2012) and Responding to a Resurgent Russia: Russian Policy and Responses from the European Union and the United States (2011). My work has also been published in Asian Survey, Issues and Insights, and Asia Dialogue. I hold a Ph.D. and an M.A in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley and a B.A. in Political Science and Japanese, Cum Laude with College Honors, from the University of Washington, Seattle.
Prior to joining the faculty at University of Hawaiʻi, I was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University’s Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and an Associate Professor of Security Studies at the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies. At UC Berkeley, I held a variety of positions, including Social Science and Humanities Advisor at the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program and East Asia Project Director of the Berkeley APEC Study Center. My interest in contemporary policy issues also led me to work briefly at the Washington DC headquarters of both the US Department of State (Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, Office of Regional and Security Policy) and the US Environmental Protection Agency (Office of Water). I am an alumnus of the Nitobe Kokusai Juku, a program that seeks to cultivate internationally minded leaders in Japan, and I have also participated in a number of Track Two diplomatic dialogues in Asia and the US through the Pacific Forum CSIS Young Leaders Program. I also spent a year teaching English at four public middle schools in Niigata, Japan through the Japan Exchange & Teaching (JET) Program.
My research has been generously funded by the University of Hawaii at Manoa, the Japan Foundation, the Blakemore Freeman Fellowship, the Boren Fellowship, Waseda University, Harvard University, the Beinecke Foundation, the Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, the Mary Gates Foundation, and various institutions at UC Berkeley such as the Center for Japanese Studies, the Institute of East Asian Studies, the Graduate Division, and the Charles and Louise Travers Department of Political Science.