My research is supported by internal and external research funding that includes the Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), American Council of Learned Societies-Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation (ACLS-CCK Foundation); the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), the Taiwan government and Taiwan Foundation of Democracy and McMaster University. You will find brief descriptions of the selected research projects here.

Research Funding 


  • 2021-2025: University Scholar Award

I was recognized by the University President and Senate as a University Scholar for my significant leadership and service to the University and professionalism in teaching, service and research. The title of University Scholar is awarded for a period of four years (2021-2025) and brings a research award of $15,000 per year, provided jointly by the Provost and Faculty of Social Sciences Dean. Read more about the award on McMaster Daily News.

  • 2020: IDRC Grant, “EMRef-McMaster Myanmar Publications Project”

I was awarded this grant to organize a workshop and support the publication of a co-edited book, Putting Women Up: Promoting Gender Equality in Myanmar Politics.

  • 2020: MITACS Research Training Award, “Comparing Covid 19 Contact Tracing Apps in Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan”

This grant enabled me to supervise an undergraduate intern to investigate the legal provisions, privacy and security implications for digital surveillance aps in three East Asian countries.

  • 2018-2019: Pre-International Studies Association Workshop Grant, “Digital Democracy: Global Dimensions”, McMaster University, 26 Mar 2019.

Tony Porter (PI) and I have been awarded a grant to bring together 30 international and local scholars for a 1-day pre-ISA workshop at McMaster University to better understand the global aspects of the challenges and opportunities that digitization has created for democracy, in an increasingly digitized world.  Visit our Digital Democracy website.

  • 2018-2023: SSHRC Insight Grant, “Ethnic Quotas and Political Representation: A Global Study” 

I will be working with Karen Bird (PI) to create a global survey of ethnic quotas, reserved seats, and other mechanisms used to advance political representation of ethnic minorities and indigenous peoples. Visit our Ethnic Quota website.

  • 2018-2019: SSHRC Connection Grant, “Comparing Mechanisms for Substantive Representation of Ethnic Minorities and Indigenous Peoples Conference”

Karen Bird and I will co-organize a three-day conference from 5-8 Dec 2018 to advance the research agenda and methodological innovations in the study of the substantive impact of ethnic minorities and indigenous people in parliament elected through quotas, reserved seats, and alternative approaches. See the list of our exciting panels and speakers on our Ethnic Quota website.

As part of a 5 member international team, I am the leading academic advisor helping to train a local NGO, Enlightened Myanmar Research Foundation (EMReF), to conduct research in Myanmar for three years. Our project- Engendering Political Recruitment and Participation at the Party, Local and National Level in Myanmar– focuses on producing research on recruitment processes and candidate selection methods that can address gender barriers to political participation. Our research will draw from interviews and survey data on attitudes and practices towards women’s political leadership in Myanmar.

  • 2016-2018: SSHRC Insight Development Grant, “Electoral Integrity in East and Southeast Asia”

This research project will compare the attitudes and effects of flawed elections on regime stability in 14 Asian countries using cross-country democratic governance indexes and survey data. I will be conducting fieldwork to assess electoral integrity in four dominant party systems in Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan and Japan in 2018-2019.

This workshop brought together 15 international electoral studies and gender scholars to study the effects of electoral rules on women’s political representation in China, Japan, Mongolia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand. For publications that resulted from this workshop, see Publications.

  • 2011-2: SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship, Asian Institute, Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto
  • 2009-10: Taiwan Economic and Cultural Office Graduate Fellowship
  • 2007-8: Taiwan Foundation for Democracy Dissertation Fellowship


  • 2020: McMaster Covid-19 Research fund for “Rising Digital Authoritarianism? Pandemic Surveillance Technology and Information Control,” with Tony Porter (CI) and Sara Bannerman (CI)
  • 2020: Faculty of Social Sciences COVID-19 Catalyst Grant
  • 2019: McMaster Arts Research Board (ARB) Conference Award,“Quotas, Reserved Seats and Ethnic Representations in Asia.”
  • 2018: Institute of Globalization and Human Condition Seed Grant, “Digital Democracy: Transformation and Public Contestations.”
  • 2018: McMaster Arts Research Board (ARB) Conference Award, “Facebook and Party Engagement in Singapore.”
  • 2017: McMaster Arts Research Board Travel Grant, “Elected Women Politicians in Singapore: A Study of Socio-Demographic Profile”
  • 2017: McMaster Arts Research Board Travel Grant, “Electoral Malpractice in East and Southeast Asia”
  • 2016: McMaster IQ2 Seed Fund, “Electoral Integrity and Digital Innovation in East and Southeast Asia”
  • 2016: McMaster ARB Major Seed Grant for a project on Ethnic Quotas and Politics of Representation: A Global Study of Electoral Rules and Their Effects
  • 2015: McMaster International Initiatives Micro Fund, “Electoral Integrity and Digital Innovation in East Asia”
  • 2014: McMaster Arts Research Board Grant, “Social Media and Opposition Mobilization in Electoral Authoritarian Regimes”
  • 2013-4: Forward With Integrity Grant and Deans of Social Sciences, Humanities, Health Sciences and Business for Asia-Canada: Transnational Collaborative Research Conference, 4 Apr 2014, McMaster University
  • McMaster’s Forward with Integrity Award for leading the Asian Research Working Group