Soyoung Lee is a Ph.D. candidate with concentrations in international relations (first field) and political methodology (second field).
Her research examines why some international issues are perceived as worth fighting for while others are not. In particular, her dissertation explores how an issue’s economic value affects perceptions of national interest and the willingness of states to escalate conflict over international issues. Conventional wisdom dictates that states are more willing to fight over issues with economic value. She argues, however, that having economic value often makes states less willing to fight over the issue by triggering domestic distributional concerns.
Soyoung’s research combines original geocoded data of territorial conflicts spanning 170 years, survey experiments, qualitative case studies, and text-analysis of political rhetoric. She also has research on alliance politics and international rivalries, and is broadly interested in examining the interplay between domestic politics and international conflict.