2017 Recipients

Alejandro Valencia Arias

Alejandro Valencia Arias

National University of Colombia, Colombia

Alejandro Valencia Arias is currently a candidate for a Doctorate in Engineering - Industry and Organizations. In addition to this, he is a Professor in the Department of Administrative Sciences at the Instituto Tecnológico Metropolitano (ITM). He has a Masters in Systems Engineering and Management Engineering from the Universidad Nacional de Colombia (Medellín, Colombia). He is also hold the position of Associate Researcher in Colciencias. He has around 15 articles in international journals indexed in Scopus and 12 articles in Colombian indexed journals. His research lines include: Social Science Simulation, Technology Management and Innovation, Market Research, Mobile Learning and Entrepreneurship.

Yuliya Brel

Yuliya Brel

University of Delaware, USA

Yuliya was born and grew up in Belarus. She graduated from Minsk State Linguistic University with an MA in Germanic languages, and worked as a teacher of English and a translator for 10 years. In 2013 she was admitted to the University of Delaware where she received an MA in Public Policy and is currently pursuing a PhD in the same field. Her research interests focus on civil society in Eastern Europe, modern dictatorships, and problems of minority languages. She works as a Research Assistant at the UD Center for Applied Demography & Survey Research. Yuliya is also an acting secretary of the Interdisciplinary Graduate Forum, a student organization at UD that promotes collaboration among students from across different disciplines.

Weiai Fang

Weiai Fang

Brandeis University, China

Weiai Fang, MA in Global Studies, Brandeis University, has a background in sociology and education. Her research interests include social exclusion and stratification, citizenship, and internal migration in Asia. Her master’s thesis focuses on a comparative study of China’s Hukou and India’s Caste system. In 2016, she served as the director assistant at Ascentria Care Alliance. Currently she works as a research assistant at the Chinese Academy of Governance on issues related to the housing problems of the internal migrants and the affordable housing projects in China. She is also working at the floating population department of the city government of Sanya, China.

Rachel Sing-Ee Tan

Rachel Sing-Ee Tan

University of Otago, New Zealand

Rachel Sing-Ee Tan is a PhD candidate at the Higher Education Development Centre, University of Otago, New Zealand. Her research explores the impact of globalisation, led by neo-liberalism ideology and information communication technology (ICT), on an emerging research university in Zanzibar, Tanzania. She seeks to contribute to the policy and practice of the research university. Her research interests are globalisation, internationalisation and higher education. Rachel earned her bachelor degree in English Linguistic and master degree in Tourism from the Universiti Putra Malaysia. She has been a lecturer, teacher and research assistant. Highly engaged with the community of her current university, she blogs for the Otago International Office and volunteers as an English tutor for migrants at Dunedin.

Wendy Chen

Wendy Chen

George Mason University, USA

Wendy Chen is a PhD student and a research assistant for the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University, USA. Her research interests lie in education policy studies, cultural and community studies, and East Asia studies. Her research is generally a fusion of sociological study and public policy analysis. Some of her research papers have been presented at academic conferences such as the 2016 Annual Meeting of Population Association of America, the 2017 American Political Science Association TLC, etc. In her leisure time, you could find Wendy hiking, travelling, and fishing.

Komali Kantamaneni

Komali Kantamaneni

Southhampton Solent University, UK

Komali Kantamaneni is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Southampton Solent University. She completed her PhD at University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Swansea, UK, entitled Assessing Coastal Vulnerability: Development of a Combined Physical and Economic Index. Her research is into risk analysis of coastal communities due to climate change impacts (such as increased flooding, coastal erosion and storms) and development of corresponding mathematical systems that can holistically measure coastal vulnerability in fiscal terms.

She holds an MBA in Business Studies from Cardiff Metropolitan University (UK); and MSc in Environmental Sciences and a BSc in Biology from Nagarjuna University, India. She has published several papers in refereed international journals as well as presented her research at various international conferences.

Xiaoya Xun

Xiaoya Xun

University of Cambridge, UK

Xiaoya Xun is currently a PhD candidate in the Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge, with Professor Per-Olof Wikström being her supervisor and Dr Kyle Treiber being her co-supervisor. Her PhD thesis focus on exploring young people’s crime involvement in China under the framework of SAT (situational action theory). This research will test if SAT works under Chinese Culture and social structure. Also, a cross-culture comparison will be made between Chinese data and PADS+ data (a longitudinal research conducted in UK). Xiaoya Xun aims to do a short longitudinal research and has already finished two rounds data collection. The first round data helped her finish her MPhil thesis and got distinction score, and now she is continuing the PhD study with a full scholarship from Cambridge Trust.

Carlos Mendez-Guerra

Carlos Mendez-Guerra

Kyushu University, Japan

Dr. Mendez-Guerra was born in La Paz, Bolivia. After studying Commercial Engineering in Bolivia and Chile, he worked as a consultant for Pro-Mujer International, The World Bank, DANIDA, and JICA. He holds a M.A. and a Ph.D. in International Development from Nagoya University (Japan). Currently, he works as lecturer in the faculty of Interdisciplinary Sciences and Innovation at Kyushu University. His main research interests focus on the macroeconomics of developing countries. In particular, regional and firm productivity dynamics, human capital accumulation, structural change, and resource misallocation.

Irfan U Din

Irfan U Din

FATA Research Centre, Pakistan

I am Irfan U Din. I am working as a Lead Researcher/Security Analyst for Pakistan and Afghanistan at FATA Research centre, an Islamabad based think tank, where I have been discussing and disseminating ideas related to violent conflict, researching solutions, and developing road-maps for conflict prevention and peace-building through advocacy, capacity building and objective research on socioeconomic, political issues confronting FATA. I have also worked as a consultant with Mitsubishi Research Institute in 2014-15 for a third-party evaluation of Japans Official Development Assistance to Pakistan from 2003 to 2013.

2017 Recipients

​Taishi Muraoka

​Taishi Muraoka

Washington University in St. Louis, USA

Taishi Muraoka is a graduate student in political science at Washington University in St. Louis. He finished the third year of his PhD program in May 2017. He is originally from Yamaguchi, Japan, located right next to Hiroshima prefecture. His research interests include representation, legislative behavior, electoral systems, and social network analysis. In his dissertation, he explores the consequences of the adoption of legislative quotas for minority groups on the policy-making process. He aims to understand how minority legislators elected under quota rules behave in legislature and how they interact with other non-minority legislators.

Eugene L. Hall

Eugene L. Hall

University of Minnesota,Twin Cities, USA

Eugene is a Marriage & Family Therapist and a Ph.D. student at the University of Minnesota in the Family Social Science - Couple & Family Therapy program. His research interests focus around issues of diversity and social justice. He is particularly focused on research that aims to support sexual and gender minority couples and their families through both theoretical and clinical research. His current research project is seeking to better understand the various ways that sexual minority individuals think about marriage/divorce and the impact of broad based family policy. Eugene conducts his clinical work at a residential addictions treatment center.

Yan Gu

Yan Gu

University of Washington, USA

Yan Gu is a Ph.D. candidate at Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies at University of Washington. Her research looks at state propaganda and public opinion on the Internet in authoritarian regimes, with an empirical focus on China. Her recent work scrapes social media data and uses automatic content analysis to investigate why Donald Trump is popular with Chinese Internet users. Before joining Jackson School, she was a journalist and commentator at Changjiang Daily, the official newspaper of Wuhan Municipal Committee of the Chinese Communist Party. She also worked at Tencent Company, a leading Chinese Internet company, as a news editor of Tencent’s mobile Internet news department.

Faris Rahmadian

Faris Rahmadian

Bogor Agricultural University, Indonesia

Faris Rahmadian is Researcher at the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development Studies (CARDS), Bogor Agricultural University. Since joining CARDS in the 2014, Faris Rahmadian is involved with studies related to the global sustainability, political ecology, and rural sociology studies with some specific cases in West and Central region of Indonesia. Currently he is actively involved in Oil Palm Adaptive Landscapes (OPAL) Research Project, an elaborative research which hosted by Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zürich to improve the management of oil palm landscapes across Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Fahlesa Munabari

Fahlesa Munabari

Universitas Budi Luhur, Indonesia

Fahlesa Munabari is a lecturer in International Relations, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, Universitas Budi Luhur, Jakarta, Indonesia. He received his PhD in Southeast Asian Studies from the University of New South Wales, Australia. His research interests revolve around political Islam, Islamic radicalism, and social movements in Indonesia. His recent research article about the ideology and framing strategies of an Islamic revivalist movement in Indonesia seeking to implement Islamic law (sharia) called Forum of Islamic Society (FUI) was published in International Area Studies Review. His commentaries appear in a range of news media such as the Jakarta Post, Strategic Review, Radio SBS Indonesian Program, Republika, Media Indonesia, and Koran Sindo.

Kee Jeong Kim

Kee Jeong Kim

Virginia Tech, USA

Dr. Kee Jeong Kim is an associate professor in the Department of Human Development at Virginia Tech in the United States.Her major research and teaching interest is in developmental psychopathology and quantitative research methodology.Her work involves the rigorous and advanced statistical analysis of interlocking trajectories of adolescent externalizing and internalizing problems and also the evolution of criminal and antisocial behavior over the life course.Utilizing large-scale longitudinal studies, she investigates risks for and resilience to aversive behavioral ad mental health developments in individuals from diverse sociocultural backgrounds.She currently conducts a research project aimed at examining the strengths and resilience of Syrian refugee families by interviewing hundreds of Syrian refugee children and their parents in Jordan as well as in Greece.In 2013, Dr. Kim was awarded the University Sporn Award, the most prestigious teaching award presented at Virginia Tech, which resulted in the induction to the Academy of Teaching Excellence.She has served as an Editorial Board member for a journal, the Prevention Researcher, and is a reviewer for eleven academic journals including Child Development, Developmental Psychology, Development and Psychopathology, and Journal of Marriage and the Family.

​Bria Yifei Yan

​Bria Yifei Yan

National University of Singapore, Singapore

Bria Yifei Yan is a PhD candidate at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore. She specializes in education policy and especially the governance of basic education. For her dissertation, she is examining the in-service training, career development and communication of principals and teachers in government middle schools in Beijing and Delhi, with a particular focus on policy instruments and stakeholder incentives. She has also gained familiarity with the Singaporean education system through coursework and consultation projects. Apart from being a researcher, Bria also publishes regularly on her blog (https://briayifeiyan.wordpress.com/) and wechat (“飞过这世界”) observations and reflections on China, India, Italy, Israel and so on.

Hajara Hameed

Hajara Hameed

Pondicherry Central University, India

Hajara Abdul Hameed is a student of Pondicherry Central University of India pursuing her Masters in Applied Psychology with Clinical specialization. Currently she is a final year student and is also research oriented. Her academic background is consistently remarkable. She has done three research papers under social psychology and is awaiting publication. Her areas of research interest include religion, Islamophobia, and minority discrimination. She holds a certificate in Arabic as a foreign language and also participated in national and international conferences of Psychology held in India.She is a polyglot and speaks four languages fluently. She is a southpaw by birth and ambidexterous by training.

Yu Yuehui (Yuna)

Yu Yuehui (Yuna)

The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Yu Yuehui (Yuna) is a PhD candidate in the Department of Social Work and Social Administration, The University of Hong Kong. She had a multi-disciplinary educational background in economics, sociology, social policy, and law. Her current research interest is social policy in development context, with a special focus on poverty issues. She is now helping on running an ongoing longitudinal mental health project in Chengdu, China. She aims at exploring and unravelling mental disability resultant household poverty using data collected in Chengdu Mental Health Project in the past more than 20 years.

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Zhao Xiaoyu

Zhao Xiaoyu

University of Warwick, UK

Zhao Xiaoyu is originally from China. He is currently a PhD student at the University of Warwick, United Kingdom. His research fields focus on China’s foreign policy, international relations in Asia-Pacific, and global governance. Traveling, watching movies, and running are some of his hobbies.