My research is on political economics and economic theory. My recent projects are on power dynamics, dynamic games, strategic communication, and mechanism design.
Before joining UC San Diego I received a Master's in Applied Mathematics from the University of Southern California.
This paper provides a framework for analyzing how the distribution of power within a group of people evolves over time. Multiple non-overlapping generations of players compete for control over the group's economic output by accumulating power – modeled as capital that enhances one's ability to extract rents. Given an initial distribution of power, this model provides a unique prediction of how it will evolve in equilibrium and its long run behavior. Three types of stable distributions are approached in the long run, termed inclusive (where all players are equally powerful), dictatorial, or oligarchic (where all power is held by one or a few players, respectively). While dictatorships and oligarchies can remain stable in arbitrarily large groups, inclusive regimes are generically unstable in sufficiently large groups. In addition to providing a theoretical explanation for the widely observed tendency of power consolidation to take place in large societies, this paper also makes a sharp prediction about the effect of group size on the strength of dictatorships.