This photo was taken outside Saddam Hussien's Secret Policy Head-Quarters (The Mukhabarat) in Bagdad, Iraq.

The history of Iraqi Intelligence and US-Iraq diplomacy provide important lessons for my research: (1) The Mukhabarat show exactly what leaders will do to understand their enemies. (2) The Iraq wars remind us of the consequences of ineffective communication: Had Saddam been able to communicate his interests effectively, the world may be a different place. 


Hi - My name is Michael. Thanks for visiting my website. 

In my research, I developed a new technique to integrate the historical and cultural determinants of a state’s foreign policy into formal models of great power politics. In empirical work, I show that conflict in these different settings is explained by how states exploit historical information to understand their rival’s motives using survey experiments with real-world intelligence analysts and archival research. Using quantitative tests, I show my motives-based theories explain variance in great power competition that theories of power and bargaining fail to capture.


My research has interested policy-makers in Washington DC because it provides novel insights about Sino-American relations and the use of digital technology in intelligence analysis.

Before starting my Ph.D., I worked as a foreign policy consultant in Iraq, Australia, Jordan, and the US. 

I like woodworking, making ice cream, and stand up comedy. 


If my research or my hobbies interest you, please reach out via email!  


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