Two GVPT undergrads are busy this summer working on a research article under the auspices of the BSOS Summer Research Institute (SRI).
Joseph Yinusa ('20) and Laura Phillips-Alvarez ('22) are working with Scott Kastner, Margaret Pearson, and GVPT graduate student Guan Wang on a paper that aims to shed light on the ways in which China's economic strength may influence other countries' policies.
The project starts with the observation that during the global coronavirus crisis, Taiwan has sought to portray itself as an example for other countries and as willing to assist other countries in their own efforts with the virus. Taiwan has also renewed efforts to obtain meaningful participation at the World Health Organization. The paper attempts to understand how economic ties between China and other countries affect their responses to Taiwan's efforts. The authors hypothesize that countries that depend more heavily on China economically will be less likely to support Taiwan, and more likely to criticize Taiwan, during the current crisis.
Joseph, Laura and the team have spent the first half of the summer gathering data on countries' favorable or critical reactions to Taiwan's Covid-19 public diplomacy, and helped gather economic information on these countries relations with China. For the remainder of the summer, the team will conduct some initial analysis, and will write up the results. A draft of the paper is to be presented at an academic conference in October.
To learn more about the SRI, see https://bsos.umd.edu/landingtopic/summer-research-initiative.