Office hours: Professor Lauren Prather
The GPS faculty member opens up about some of the dearest objects that adorn her office, painting a picture of her professional backstory and personal interests
July 28, 2019 | By Rachel Hommel | GPS News
Step inside the office of Lauren Prather at the UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy (GPS) and you will find a professor dedicated to democracy promotion, democratization and the humanitarian spirit.
Prather’s research focuses on exploring the political economy of foreign aid, supported by the National Science Foundation, the UC San Diego Hellman Fellowship, the MIT Election Lab and the Princeton University Center for Human Values.
Currently, she is breaking new ground exploring multiple types of foreign influences on elections as illustrated in her most recent work in the country of Georgia. As a Hellman fellow, Prather was able to expand her research to examine foreign electoral interventions and their effects on local trust in elections.
To get the big picture on Prather’s professional backstory and personal interests, hover over the images above.
3 questions with Professor Lauren Prather
What is your academic focus?
I am a political scientist and work in the field of international relations. My work generally focuses on how individuals are affected by foreign policy and how this affects their political attitudes and behaviors.
What are the real-world impacts of your research?
Right now, I am writing a book on how foreign countries affect trust in elections. Whether individuals trust elections impacts whether they buy into the democratic process as a whole. We need to understand whether international democracy promotion can improve trust where it is lacking and we need to understand whether foreign election meddling, like Russia's attempts to influence the 2016 presidential election in the U.S., undermines electoral trust. This is critical to understand the trajectory of democracy in the world today.
What skills or understanding do you hope students leave your class with?
I teach a core class called International Politics and Security. In that class, we spend a lot of time discussing game theoretic logic and applying it to different international security topics, such as war. My hope is that the basic theoretical insights from the class can not only be taken and applied by students who are interested in international security, but also much more broadly. Understanding the game theoretic logic behind bargaining, for example, explains not just why countries might go to war but can also help you win an argument with your roommate.
- A day in the life of a NCAA Woman of the Year Honoree
- Nirupama Rao defines the future of Indo-Pacific relations
- Winter reading for the bibliophile
- Alumni nominated spotlight: Booz Allen Hamilton consultant Maura Deignan
- Leading from the front
- Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies expands research on drug war and migrant crisis
- A marriage of policy and advocacy
- Decarbonizing the grid
- Sylff Fellows translate vision into reality
- Stanford study finds poor air quality responsible for one in five infant deaths in sub‑Saharan Africa
- Office hours: Associate Professor Jennifer Burney
- Class of 2018 graduates embody global citizenry and leadership
- Science Policy Fellows program nurtures effective interdisciplinary scholars
- Building cross-border relationships
- Geoengineering a greener future
- Sponsored Student Spotlight: Adnan Saygili
- Celebrating academic excellence
- Painting the picture of an MPP student’s day
- Gregory Lee looks at the future of digital health and technology
- A sustainable seafood hero
- Pass the pen: Alumnae nominated spotlight
- Campus recognizes alumni as leaders and changemakers
- Innovation in mobile technology
- Ian Johnson chronicles the rise of religion in China
- Writing the book on China’s economic policy
- Broadening horizons through international experience at BCG
- Office hours: Professor Gordon McCord
- New evening option for working professionals
- China's infrastructure investment as a development strategy
- Rethinking the war on drugs in Mexico
- Creating theoretical frameworks
- Nurturing future leaders at TechPolis
- The future is female
- Jamal Russell Black on Veridian Analytics' entrepreneurial spirit
- Love is in the air
- A day in the life of an MCEPA student
- Health and human capital
- Eduardo Porter finds journalistic inspiration at GPS
- Technology assessment at the nexus of STEM and policy
- IGCC receives coveted UC research grant
- Battery storage at the center of energy policy
- Researching how humans and the environment interact
- Office hours: Professor Ulrike Schaede
- Fighting wildfires with web based imagery
- United we dream
- Our 2017-2018 Boren Fellows
- Applying game theory to study behaviors
- Students craft views on climate change at COP23
- Molding future technical experts
- Why GPS: A niche in life
- The art of entrepreneurship
- Solar energy and pursuing the policy dream
- Social entrepreneur and first time author Ken Davenport ’90 of “The Two Gates”
- Why GPS: Discovering a passion for all things math
- Our 2017-18 Dean’s Fellows
- A Living, Learning Laboratory
- A ‘Prep Program’ for success, before day one
- Office hours: Professor Gordon Hanson
- Adding to a truly interdisciplinary academic environment
- Why GPS: Apply now and figure it out later
- Sponsored Student Spotlight: Noritoshi Kurokawa
- West Coast-Trained for a Washington, D.C. Think Tank
- Linked in Latin America
- Facilitating a ‘family affair’
- Nico Ravanilla retreats to Oxford for research
- 2016 alumni remember their first year in the real world
- Pioneering international excellence
- Research at the border: A living laboratory of transformation