I have earned my Ph.D. at the Department of Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison. My research focuses on political economy of violence. In my dissertation project entitled “When Does Business Turn Violent?” I look at why in postcommunist countries competition in business so often degenerates into physical violence between competitors. In order to answer this question I have collected a database of 6,005 cases of violence against businessmen, public officeholders, and journalists in 74 regions of Russia for a period of 20 years (1991-2010). I supplement my quantitative findings with qualitative data. In the fall of 2011 I conducted a series of interviews with the criminological community, law enforcement officers, and representatives of the business community in two test regions in the Far East of Russia (Primorskii krai and Khabarovskii krai) and three regions in the European part of Russia (Moscow, Saratov, Tatarstan, and St. Petersburg). I also interviewed several Russian businessmen who currently work in the Russian market, but have their operations based abroad (in South Korea).
My other research interests include Law and Society, Political Economy, International Relations and Criminology
I was born in the Soviet Union and lived in Russia as it was transitioning from Communism to the market economy, which has informed my scholarly interests.
I currently live in Oceanside, California where I have been fortunate to be a part of the vibrant intellectual community of the Institute of Mathematical and Behavioral Studies at the University of California-Irvine. I work full time as a Senior Administrative Analyst at the Department of Institutional Research, UC San Diego.