Monday, August 13, 2018
1:00 PM
Harkness 112
Yu Wang
University of Rochester
Essays on Computational International Relations

Do you want to see what else machine learning can do besides image classification and writing Shakespeare sonnets? Please come to Yus thesis defense for the first joint PhD in Political Science and Computer Science to be awarded by the University.

The thesis consists of three essays, each exploring a unique angle to apply machine learning techniques to the study of international relations. The first essay models the expansion process of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) using Probit regression and Cox proportional hazards model. The second essay predicts the outbreaks of civil wars using gradient boosted trees and achieves results that surpass state of the art (random forests) by a large margin. The third essay creates a metric of country dyadic engagement by embedding countries into a vector space and uses the engagement metric to analyze the allocation of U.S. foreign aid.

Reception to follow in the lounge, Harkness Hall


Prof. Randy Stone, Political Science (co-advisor); Prof. Curt Signorino, Political Science; Prof. Jiebo Luo, Computer Science (co-advisor); Prof. Henry Kautz, Computer Science; Prof. Sally Thurston, Biostatistics