Fordham University            The Jesuit University of New York





My teaching is motivated by the belief that undergraduate education should prepare youth for succeeding in an increasingly globalized world. The growing interdependence of national economies, the increasing cross-border movement of people, and the cross-national diffusion of ideas call for the development of citizens’ competence in foreign affairs and intercultural communication. Against this backdrop, I seek to advance students’ understanding of world politics by building bridges between theory and real-life events, fostering students’ communication skills, and supporting undergraduate research.

In spring 2013 I added a study abroad component to the interdisciplinary capstone course Youth and Politics and took a group of undergraduate students to Lviv, Ukraine so that they could immerse themselves in another culture and compare patterns of political behavior among American and Ukrainian youth. More recently, I facilitated the development of a GO (Global Outreach)! Ukraine Project, in collaboration with Fordham’s Office of Ministry and Mission and the Ukrainian Catholic University.



(from left to right): Maria DeCasper, Olena Nikolayenko Anisah Assim, and Niara Walden; Fordham Undergraduate Research Symposium, April 2016


Ukrainian Catholic University, Lviv, Ukraine, March 2013

POSC 4037 Social Movements and Revolutions

World history abounds with examples of violent revolutions, labor strikes, and student protests. The twentieth century, for example, has seen the development of the civil rights movement in the United States and a tide of ethnic mobilization in the Soviet Union. In 1968 youth-led protests occurred in such diverse places as Czechoslovakia, France, and Mexico. Specifically, a large number of university students protested against US military engagement in Vietnam in the late 1960s. More recently, we have witnessed electoral revolutions in Eastern Europe, the Arab Spring in the Middle East, and the emergence of the Occupy Wall Street, the Black Lives Matter and #MeToo Movement in the USA. What are causes of revolutions? Why are some social movements more successful than others in achieving their goals and bringing about social change? Who protests? The course will address these issues from an interdisciplinary perspective, drawing upon literature in anthropology, history, political science, and sociology.

Syllabus (Spring 2018)


POSC 4025 Youth and Politics

Youth is widely regarded as the future of the nation and an agent of social change. Young people aged between 15 and 29 constitute approximately 20 percent of US population. How does the young generation participate in politics? What influences youth’s voting behavior? What is the impact of family, schools, and social media on youth’s political engagement? The course will address these issues from an interdisciplinary, cross-national perspective. Students in the course are expected to examine a linkage between youth and politics by carrying out original empirical research. Each student will conduct a few in-depth interviews with his or her peers to analyze patterns of youth political behavior. At the end of the course, students will complete a research paper based upon their empirical findings.

Syllabus (Fall 2017)

POSC 3622 Politics of the European Union                                    

The European Union (EU) consists of 28 member states, with the total population of more than 500 million people. Taken as a whole, EU is one of the largest economies in the world, and it is a major trade partner with the United States. Furthermore, EU is an influential actor in world politics. How does EU work? Is there democratic deficit in this unique political and economic partnership? What are prospects for the expansion of the euro zone and further EU enlargement? This course will address these issues through the analysis of EU institutions, policies, and political processes. The course is divided into three parts. The first part examines the evolution of the European Union over time. The second part focuses on EU public policies. The third part deals with EU external relations.

Syllabus (Fall 2013)


POSC 3631 China and Russia in Comparative Perspective

China and Russia are currently powerful players in the international arena. They tend to cooperate with each other to safeguard their national interests and challenge US position in world politics. The Russian government, for example, defied international law by annexing the Crimea and providing military backing for insurgents in eastern Ukraine. Moreover, the former FBI Director Robert Mueller was appointed as the Special Counsel to lead an investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential elections in the United States. There is also a danger of US-China trade war, given President Donald Trump’s threats to impose steep import tariffs. Meanwhile, incumbent governments in China and Russia face a litany of domestic policy challenges, including rampant corruption and socioeconomic inequality. Incumbents in both countries seek to foster economic development in a repressive political environment. Since the introduction of free market reforms in the late 1970s, Chinese economy has been growing at an average annual rate of ten percent. The Communist Party of China, however, strives to sustain economic growth without dismantling a one-party political system and losing social control over the population. Similarly, the Russian government stifles the development of civil society to secure the durability of the authoritarian regime. This course is designed to provide a broad overview of political, socioeconomic, and cultural developments in contemporary China and Russia.

Syllabus (Spring 2018)


POSC 5500 Comparative Political Analysis

This course provides a critical survey of main theoretical debates and methodological approaches in the field of comparative politics. This strand of research seeks to explain a wide range of political outcomes, including democratization, civic engagement, ethnic conflict, and corruption, by comparing countries or regions so the course draws upon empirical evidence from Africa, East Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. The course begins by examining how such theoretical frameworks as rational choice, political culture, and institutionalism advance our understanding of domestic politics. The next section focuses on the use of quantitative and qualitative research methods in the field of comparative politics. The concluding section unpacks the process of writing an empirical research paper in social sciences.

Syllabus (Fall 2013)