Brian Chao

Ph.D. Student in International Relations

Brian C. Chao is a fifth-year student in the Graduate Group in Political Science, as well as a graduate associate of Perry World House, the University of Pennsylvania’s hub for global engagement. His research interests focus on naval power and geostrategy, US defense and foreign policy in the Indo-Asia-Pacific, the rise of China, and cross-Taiwan Strait relations. Brian’s dissertation, “A Double Vocation: The State and Military Power on Land and Sea,” examines continental great powers’ attempts to simultaneously possess naval power. Through in-depth historical analysis of France, Germany, Imperial Russia, and the Soviet Union, he argues that continental great powers’ success at naval development is determined by a combination of 1) investment persistence in the face of recurring landward threats and 2) threat diffusion to ameliorate the dominant naval power’s threat perception.

Brian holds an AB in Government from Dartmouth College and an AM in Political Science from Pennsylvania, as well as certificates in college/university teaching and in Mandarin Chinese.

University of Pennsylvania
The Ronald O. Perelman Center for Political Science and Economics
133 S. 36th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6215
Phone: (215) 898-7641

Nicholas Sambanis Chair
Alex Weisiger Graduate Chair
Daniel Hopkins Undergraduate Chair