I am a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Florida. My primary research interests are international security, energy politics, and maritime conflict. I am regionally interested in China and East Asia. My dissertation focuses on China’s energy mercantilism, its asymmetric trade dependence with Southeast Asian neighboring countries, and their combined effects on the escalation of China’s militarized actions in its maritime disputes. My dissertation contributes to understanding China’s selective escalation in its maritime disputes—Why has China escalated maritime disputes in the South China Sea but not in the East China Sea or Yellow Sea—with my original dataset and methodological skills. I also focus on political methodology— multi-level analysis, Geographic Information System (GIS) analysis, spatial network analysis, survival analysis, maximum likelihood estimation, linear models, text analysis, and mixed methods. I have conducted fieldwork in Beijing and Shanghai, China, and Washington, D.C.