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Shorenstein APARC Announces 2018-19 Postdoctoral Fellows

The Shorenstein Asia Pacific Research Center (APARC) is pleased to welcome three postdoctoral fellows for the 2018-19 academic year. The cohort includes two Shorenstein Postdoctoral Fellows and one Developing Asia Health Policy Fellow. All three will begin their year of academic study and research at Stanford this fall.

For more than a decade, Shorenstein APARC has sponsored numerous junior scholars to come to the university and work closely with Stanford faculty, develop their dissertations for publication, participate in workshops and seminars, and present their research to the broader community. APARC's Asia Health Policy Program sponsors young scholars who pursue original research on contemporary health or healthcare policy of high relevance to countries in the Asia-Pacific region, especially developing countries.

The 2018-19 fellows carry a broad range of interests including authoritarianism in Southeast Asia, the use of coercion in national security, and community health policy in developing countries. Continue reading to learn about their qualifications and research plans:


Sebastian Dettman

"When are opposition parties and movements successful in challenging entrenched authoritarian regimes?"

Sebastian Dettman is completing his doctorate in the Department of Government at Cornell University. He researches party building, electoral competition, and political representation in newly democratic and authoritarian regimes, with a focus on Southeast Asia.

Seb's dissertation examines the dilemmas faced by Malaysia's opposition parties in expanding electoral support and building coalitions, and the implications for regime liberalization. His research has been supported by grants including the NSEP Boren Fellowship, the USINDO Sumitro Fellowship, and Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships. At Shorenstein APARC, Seb will work on developing his dissertation into a book manuscript and make progress on his next project exploring regime-opposition policy interactions in authoritarian regimes.

Prior to his doctorate, Seb received an MA in Southeast Asian Studies from the University of Michigan. He has also worked as a consultant and researcher for organizations including the Asia Foundation, the International Crisis Group, and the Carter Center.


Ketian Vivian Zhang

"What explains the specific foreign policy behavior of rising powers such as China and how might we better manage China's rise?"

Ketian Vivian Zhang is completing her doctorate in the Political Science Department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she is also an affiliate of the Security Studies Program. Ketian studies coercion, economic sanctions, and maritime territorial disputes in international relations and nationalism in comparative politics, with a regional focus on China and East Asia.

Ketian's dissertation examines when, why, and how China uses coercion when faced with issues of national security, such as territorial disputes in the South and East China Seas, foreign arms sales to Taiwan, and foreign leaders' reception of the Dalai Lama. Ketian has done extensive fieldwork in various cities in China, including conducting interviews with Chinese officials and scholars. Her research has been supported by organizations such as the Institute for Security and Conflict Studies at George Washington University, the Smith Richardson Foundation, the Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation, and the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School, where she is currently a Predoctoral Research Fellow in the International Security Program

At Shorenstein APARC, Ketian will work on converting her dissertation to a book manuscript and advancing her post-dissertation projects on nationalism and anti-foreign protests. Previously, Ketian was a Predoctoral Fellow at the Institute for Security and Conflict Studies at George Washington University. Ketian earned a B.A. in Political Science and Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was a research intern at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C., where she was a contributor to its website Foreign Policy in Focus.


Sarita Panday

"How could we better manage and support community health workers to deliver healthcare in resource-poor countries?"

Sarita Panday is a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Politics at the University of Sheffield (U.K). She is working on the project "Resilience Policy Making in Nepal: Giving Voice to Communities" funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (U.K.). She is currently collecting data using participatory video methods to bring attention to unheard voices from three remote communities in Nepal affected by earthquakes

Sarita completed her Ph.D. at the School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR) at the University of Sheffield. Her dissertation explores the role of female community health volunteers in maternal health service provision in Nepal. While at Stanford as an AHPP Fellow, Sarita plans to undertake research on community health workers and incentives in South Asia.

Sarita has skills in understanding systematic reviews, qualitative research, mixed-method research and the use of participatory video methods. She has worked as a principal investigator and a coinvestigator in different systematic review projects funded by the World Health Organization, the University Grants Commision (Nepal), and the Department for International Development (U.K.). Her major interests are in maternal health, community health workers, and health policy research including resilience policy making in developing countries, with a focus on South Asia and--in particular--Nepal.

Prior to her Ph.D., Sarita earned her combined Masters in Public Health and Health Management from the University of New South Wales under the Australian Leadership Award. She completed her B.Sc. in Nursing from BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences (Nepal). She is also a recognized Fellow at the Higher Education Academy (U.K.).