Meet Rachel Hulvey, 2021 APSA Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grantee

The American Political Science Association is pleased to announce the Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant (DDRIG) Awardees for 2021. The APSA DDRIG program provides support to enhance and improve the conduct of doctoral dissertation research in political science. Awards support basic research which is theoretically derived and empirically oriented.

Rachel Hulvey, University of Pennsylvania

Rachel Hulvey is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania and a graduate affiliate of the Center for the Study of Contemporary China. International law and institutions are attributed as significant forces shaping international cooperation, but how does common understanding develop? Her research studies the forces shaping the creation of international order in a novel global domain: the internet.

Contrary to most existing issue areas, internet governance is highly decentralized. The United States’ efforts were instrumental in establishing institutions that privilege the decision-making power of private actors to limit government interference with a global communications network. China has emerged as a significant advocate of binding rules and treaties within the United Nations. Using a mixed-methods approach, she examines how China uses normative tools to influence government preferences for formal treaties in cyberspace. By collecting the text of government submissions to internet governance negotiations, Rachel produces an original dataset documenting government preferences for legal design and institutions under the influence of China’s normative strategies and cyber sovereignty foreign policy, producing original insight on how international order develops around emerging technologies.