I received a PhD in Public Policy from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin. My doctoral dissertation, entitled In Defense of Voting, examines the motivating factors of voter turnout and demonstrates the value of participating in elections—for individuals, and for the overall functioning of democracy.
This work has two related objectives:
1) to restore confidence in the value of voting as a matter of individual-level efficacy, and as a choice that is both rational and ethical;
2) to lay stronger foundations in participatory democratic theory for electoral reforms designed to increase and equalize voter turnout across the United States.
Please see here for detailed description of the dissertation chapters, including download links.
My wider research interests extend to comparative electoral institutions and constitutional design.
⋅ “An Exploratory Study of Constitutional Design in Three Island States: Seychelles, Comoros, and Mauritius.” Journal of Contemporary African Studies 35 (3): 324-348 (2017). (author’s manuscript)
⋅ “Africa’s Domestic Institutions of Integration and Accommodation: A New Database.” In Constitutions and Conflict Management in Africa: Preventing Civil War through Institutional Design, ed. Alan J. Kuperman, 183-224 (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2015).
Selected Other Works
⋅ Blog post for the Franchise Project: “Asking Better Questions about Voter Identification Laws” (December 2017)
⋅ African Constitutional Design Database and Codebook (associated with 2015 book chapter)
⋅ A short film I directed about the 2010 midterm elections in Austin, TX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFXTwBt5eKY
epoupko <“at”> utexas <“dot”> edu