Robert Ralston

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Contact Me


I am a Ph.D. student in Political Science at the University of Minnesota. I study international security, public opinion, and human rights. My dissertation examines the politics of international decline and "declinism." My work has been supported by the Tobin Project, as well as the University of Minnesota's Graduate Research Partnership Program. I co-organize the Minnesota Political Methodology Colloquium (MPMC) with Carly Potz-Nielsen.

Educational Background & Specialties

Educational Background

  • M.A. : Political Science, Virginia Tech, 2014.
  • B.A.: Political Science, Winthrop University, 2012.

Curriculum Vitae


  • International Relations
  • International Security
Courses Taught
  • Russian Politics (TA)
  • Human Rights and Democracy in the World (TA)
  • Citizens, Consumers, and Society (TA)
Research & Professional Activities

Professional Activities

  • Tobin Project : Prospectus Development Workshop , June 2017
  • University of Arizona Methods Workshop: Machine Learning, Social Network Analysis , January 2016
  • Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR): Short Course: Text Analytics , Summer 2015
  • The Institute for Qualitative and Multi-Method Research (IQMR): Coursework in Qualitative and Multi-Method Research (Content Analysis, Discourse Analysis, and Process Tracing) , Summer 2015
  • Milton Wolf Seminar 2014: Foreign Policies of the Internet in a time of Surveillance and Disclosure: Emerging Scholars Program hosted by the Diplomatische Akademie Wien and the Annenberg School of Communication, University of Pennsylvania


  • Graduate Research Assistant (Ron Krebs) 2016--:
  • Human Rights Watch Advisory Project: Budgetary Analysis and Human Rights, 2016


  • MPMC Organizer: 2017-2018
  • MIRC Organizer: 2015 - 2016
  • "Trump and Obama Have One Surprising Thing in Common -- The Words They Use.": Ralston, Robert, Ron Krebs, The Conversation, 2017. Link
  • The Transgender Ban and Politics of Exclusion: Ralston, Robert, Jen Spindel, Duck of Minerva, 2017. Link
  • Budget Analysis as a Tool to Monitor Economic and Social Rights: Ralston, Robert, Manion, Megan, Matthews, Thandi, and Ian Allan, Journal of Human Rights Practice, 9 146–158, 2017. Link
  • Graduate Research Partnership Program Fellowship (GRPP), College of Liberal Arts