Welcome! I teach comparative and international politics at the University of Rhode Island as the Silvia-Chandley Professor of Nonviolence and Peace Studies (2017-2019). My professional focus is on the role that religious, historical, and cultural narratives can play in democratic development. Since my return from Ukraine, where I spent the academic year 2013-2014 as a Fulbright Research Scholar, I have focused particular attention on developments there.

I am currently working on several book length projects. One explores the tensions that arise from the simultaneous efforts of the Russian government to modernize society, and of the Russian Orthodox Church to “re-Christianize” it. Another is a critical appraisal of how the "values gap" between Russia and the West has shaped American foreign policy. Ultimately, I hope to identify the sources within the Russian and European cultural traditions that could help to bridge this gap.

Even as my writings have become more varied, a common thread remains --  the choice of cultural framework, or narrative, often determines a policy’s success or failure.