2021-22 Doctoral Research Fellows

Photo of Linda Chimwemwe BandaLinda Chimwemwe Banda
School of Social Welfare
Advisor: Juliana Carlson

Linda’s interdisciplinary research examines the implementation of Malawi’s national policy to end child marriage. Her research agenda focuses on the complex intersecting policy areas of child marriage and child welfare, with the analytical and material link being the gendered aspects of both critical areas of social wellbeing. Using the Intersectionality and African Feminist theories, Linda’s research is formed around the following areas: policy and innovation implementation approaches and child marriage outcomes, impact of laws and policies regarding child marriage, and evidence-based initiatives to promote sustainable practices to end child marriage. Linda’s research is grounded in years of work on several national level campaigns, one of which resulted in a change of Malawi’s constitution, raising the legal age of marriage.
Photo of Cora CatonCora Caton
Political Science
Advisor: Nazli Avdan

Cora is a third year doctoral student in Political Science with a concentration in International Relations. Her broader research interests focus on political behavior and political violence as well as economic and political inequality. Some of her current projects examine topics such as civil liberties, white nationalist terrorism, and voting behavior among minority ethnic groups in Turkey.
Photo of Brigid EnchillBrigid Enchill
French, Francophone & Italian Studies
Advisors: Van Kelly and Kimberly Swanson

Brigid's research investigates how corruption whether endemic or induced by foreign actors, is portrayed by writers and filmmakers from Haiti, Benin and Senegal, who criticize not only their own country's complacency and bad governance, but also neocolonial practices and interferences from the West: particularly, France, USA and Canada. Through her research, she examines how foreign aid is often not beneficial to these nations, but rather keeps them in a perpetual cycle of dependence and continuous exploitation. She argues that literature and cinema expose the influence of neocolonialism on the genesis and sustenance of corruption in the Caribbean and West Africa, thus emphasizing its transnational reach.
Photo of Matt EricksonMatt Erickson
Advisor: ChangHwan Kim

How are paid and unpaid work divided between women and men in different-sex couples? It may seem to be a personal decision, but an array of broader social forces and patterns shape this division of labor: evolving gender norms, ever-increasing economic inequality, and stubbornly persistent workplace structures, just to name a few. Matt’s research aims to explain, bit by bit, how these forces and others have contributed to changes over time in the gender division of labor.
Photo of John Paul HenryJohn Paul Henry
Advisor: Shannon O'Lear

As a political geographer, John Paul studies the spatial, embodied, and geopolitical implications of surveillance and other visual practices. In his dissertation research, he approaches the gendered and racialized ways surveillance is experienced through the lens of sousveillance, the practice of filming those in power. He collaborates with Cuban activists to understand visuality in terms of knowledge-creation practices and to amplify lived experiences into new affectual capacities.
Photo of Suman RathSuman Rath
Special Education
Advisor: Tom Skrtic

Suman is a fourth-year doctoral student in the department of Special Education at the University of Kansas. He is an interdisciplinary scholar focusing on critically examining implementation of policy. His focus area includes understanding factors that shape law and policy, structures and institutional factors helping in its implementation, and finally critical factors that impede citizen access to key benefits afforded by the policy framework. Prior to joining the department of Special Education, Suman worked for the Government of India, consulted public and private schools, and practiced as a consultant for five years with Pricewaterhouse Coopers. His research lies at the intersection of Public Policy and Education, examining stories that explain the factors that lead to oppression and inequality.
Photo of Darcy SullivanDarcy Sullivan
Advisor: Jarron Saint Onge

Darcy Sullivan is a PhD student at the University of Kansas in the Department of Sociology specializing in medical sociology, gender and sexuality, and disability studies. Darcy’s research applies a critical feminist lens to understand the social forces that influence women’s access to reproductive healthcare, contraception, family formation, and sex education. Her current research investigates the role of publicly funded family planning and women’s health clinics on maternal health.
Photo of Carolisa WatsonCarolisa Watson
Advisor: Alex Diener

Carolisa's research interests intersect identity studies, placemaking, soft power, migration, and human rights. In her dissertation, she seeks to explore placemaking among Tibetan refugee communities to understand how identity and culture are expressed in response to external factors such as soft power, tourism, and political contention.
Photo of Haoyi Wei Haoyi Wei
Advisor: Donna Ginther

Haoyi's research focuses on law and economics. Specifically, he studies the unintended and unexpected consequences of gun laws and marijuana laws. His current project examines the impact of permissive gun laws on traffic safety.

Click here to view past IPSR Doctoral Research Fellows.

Links on this page:

  1. ipsr@ku.edu