McCall MacBain Scholarships - Master’s and Professional Programs

A full graduate scholarship and community to help you make a difference in the world.

Current PhD Students

Maxime Blanchard

B.A. UQÀM (History & political science)

M.A. Université Laval (Political science)

maxime.blanchard [at] 

Statement of Interest

My work focuses on the development and evolution of political preferences in a comparative perspective. I am also interested in developing methods to improve survey data analyses.

Aengus Bridgman

aengus.bridgman [at]


Statement of Interest

Aengus studies political behaviour and particularly participation and motivation of online political activists. He studies these phenomena in Canada and other mature democracies. Methodologically, he works with survey, census, and social media data with additional interests in data science, machine learning, natural language processing and computational social science more generally. His work has been published or is forthcoming in The Journal of Politics, The Journal of Experimental Political Science, Party Politics, The Misinformation Review, and The Canadian Journal of Political Science.

Rose Chabot

Bachelor in International Studies, Université de Montréal

rose.chabot [at]

Red de Politólogas | LinkedIn

Statement of Interest

My research interests revolve around state-society relations in decentralized institutional settings and how political processes shape public policies, from design to implementation. My dissertation adopts a subnational comparative research design in Brazil and Argentina, and employs mixed methods to unpack how, to what extent, and under which circumstances policy-makers implement gender violence and sexual and reproductive health public policies.

Costin Ciobanu

Master's Degree in Political and Social Communication, University Paris 1 (Panthéon - Sorbonne)
B.A. in Philosophy, University of Bucharest

costin.ciobanu [at]

Statement of Interest

Research Interests: Public Opinion and Political Preferences; Voting Behavior; Election Forecasting Models; Economic Voting; Issue Voting; Political Communication; Political Parties; Central and Eastern European Politics.

Megan Cudmore

megan.cudmore [at]


Statement of Interest

I am interested in decision-making on the Supreme Court of Canada. Particularly, analyzing judges as members of a community, using sociological frameworks and role theory to study judicial behaviour and conduct both on and off the bench.

Merve Erdilmen

MA in Political Science, McGill University
BS in Sociology, Middle East Technical University
Academic Exchange Year Certificate, Institut d'études politiques de Paris (Sciences Po Paris)
BA in Philosophy, Middle East Technical University

merve.erdilmen [at]


Statement of Interest

Merve's research interests include humanitarianism, gender-based asylum, and the role of state and non-state actors in refugee management in the Middle East. Her research aims to unpack the norms and practices of women refugee empowerment policies in Turkey.

Michel Fournier-Simard

MA in Political Science & Public Policy, Sciences Po Paris - École doctorale
BA in Political Science & History, University of Ottawa

michel.fournier-simard [at]

Website | Twitter

Statement of Interest

Michel Fournier-Simard is a PhD candidate in the Department of Political Science at McGill University specialized in the social impact of Artificial Intelligence. His dissertation looks at police policy making in the era of AI. As the police enacts the State monopoly of legitimate violence over a given territory, the way it engages with technological innovations to enhance this power - or not -, and how society responds, are crucial dynamics illustrative of the challenges AI poses for policy makers. When integrating police AI technological innovations, services must identify which products or services provide the best balance between optimized technical capacities and cost efficiency, while developing use policies addressing privacy, inequality and unaccountability concerns. Michel dives into the decision-making process of police policy leaders, arguing they make sense of complex AI technologies through a simplification process centred on the impact of technologies on traditional policing, the type of surveillance capacities they enhance, and the perceive maturity of each technology. In addition to his PhD research, Michel is a dedicated part-time educator in the Faculty of Political Science at Dawson College. He holds an MA in Political Science & Public Policy (École doctorale de Sciences Po - Paris), and a B.S. in Political Science & History (University of Ottawa – summa cum laude). His doctoral research is supported by a Wolfe 2020 Graduate Fellowship, as well as the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.


Yolaine Frossard de Saugy

MA in International History from IHEID in Geneva
MSc in African Politics from SOAS, University of London

yolaine.frossarddesaugy [at]

Statement of Interest

My PhD project focuses on the international fight against HIV/AIDS and minority rights, and I work on global health and African politics

Akanit Horatanakun

MPA in Economic and Political Development, Columbia University
B.A. in Political Science, Chulalongkorn University

akanit.horatanakun [at] | LinkedIn

Statement of Interest

My dissertation asks: why do some civil society organizations succeed in changing the way the state addressing human rights protection and violations in the context of Asia? My cases involve countries in East and Southeast Asia with an in-depth investigation of Thailand and Taiwan. Before joining McGill, I worked several years on human rights advocacy and campaigning in the context of Southeast Asia with a focus on Thailand.

Research Interests: Comparative Politics and Southeast Asian Politics, Civil Society, Politics of Human Rights.

Olivier Jacques

MA Political Science, Université de Montréal
BA International Studies, Université de Montréal

olivier.jacques [at]


Statement of Interest

Fighting climate change, building the infrastructure for tomorrow’s economy or adapting public finances to the challenges that present an aging society all involve making sacrifices in the present to build a more prosperous future. My dissertation reveals that such choices are uncommon: policies covering large and influential constituencies and those offering benefits in the short term are prioritized when governments implement austerity packages, while long-term investments are cutback.

The dissertation, titled The politics of fiscal policy trade-offs in an era of permanent austerity is about budgetary choices under constraints. After showing that government’s fiscal room to maneuver is decreasing over time, as revenues fail to match rising expenditure demands, it asks what policies are more likely to be prioritized under such a constrained situation. Three questions deriving from the finding that long-term investments are likely to be cutback under austerity are then addressed in this dissertation 1) Does politics and institutions mediate the impact of austerity on long-term investments? 2) What is the impact of austerity on politics? 3) Are government’s choices reflecting public opinion preferences?

My other projects include research on Canadian politics, notably on interprovincial social policy differences, tax policies and political discretion in infrastructure spending. Also, I do cross national research on the impact of welfare states' design and income redistribution.


Lucas Jerusalimiec

lucas.jerusalimiec [at]


Statement of Interest

My thesis, “National Identity and Early State Development,” investigates how sixteenth- and seventeenth-century officials’ conduct during the reigns of Henri III, Henri IV, and Louis XIII were influenced by their belief in France’s historical mission. It asks how early modern bureaucrats were able to achieve a sense of collective identity that was sufficiently strong to enable them to solve the coordination problems inherent in state-building. In France, these bureaucrats were responsible not only for implementing centralized taxation, but also for instituting a religiously exclusionary criminal justice system and for developing the first modern theories of sovereignty. These observations suggest a strong link between early French bureaucrats’ legal and religious philosophies and their drive to build a centralized state.

To complete this research my dissertation will draw on both comparative historical and history of political thought literatures. My central case studies are the work of legal theorist Jean Bodin (1529/30-1596) and his influence on the subsequent development of French administrative theory. By exploring the exclusionary nationalist underpinnings of Bodin’s theory of sovereignty this research project helps reassess the ongoing debate about whether strong states or nationalist movements were the primary factors behind the rise of the European nation-state. My research indicates that the initial impetus may be located a small group of early modern French bureaucrats who sought ways to build a stronger state in order to spread their nationalist ideology and legal theory more widely.

I contend that new insights into the way that nation-building was historically conjoined to the development of a legal theory of exclusionary state sovereignty remain relevant today in settler and post-colonial states such as Canada. This is because nationalist bureaucrats used the state apparatus not only to sustain independence movements but also to essentialize and repress Indigenous peoples in the name of creating ethno-culturally homogeneous national identities.

Marjolaine Lamontagne

MA in Political Science (International Relations) Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM)

BA in International Relations and International Law Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM)

marjolaine.lamontagne [at]

Statement of Interest

Marjolaine's research interests are at the junction of IR and Comparative politics and encompass global governance, multilateral diplomacy, and international organizations, as well as federalism, multi-level governance, cultural and national diversity, and paradiplomacy (the international activities of “substate” - federated and regional - governments such as Quebec and Flanders). She mobilizes practice theory (IR) to analyze the consequences of substate involvement in multilateral organizations and conferences (UNESCO, the Council of the European Union, United Nations' Climate Change conferences) for the practices and politics of global and national governance.


Mathieu Lavigne

M.Sc. in Political Science, Université de Montréal
B.Sc. in Political Science - Honours, Université de Montréal

mathieu.lavigne [at]

Statement of Interest

Mathieu is interested in campaign and media effects, public opinion, political psychology, and political behavior. He has a regional focus on Canada and other Western democracies and mostly relies on survey and textual data.

Sashenka Lleshaj

MSc in Russia and East European Studies, University of Oxford
BA in Political Science, University of Tirana

Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship 2019-2022

sashenka.lleshaj [at]

Statement of Interest

Research Interests: Memory politics, transitional justice, post-communist transition, nationalism and ethnic wars, South Eastern Europe, Orientalism and Balkanism, authoritarianism and dictatorships, legacies of communism and social cleavages, European Union, EU conditionality and democratization.

Zarlasht Muhammad Razeq

MA in International Development, University of Ottawa
MA in International Affairs, Carleton University
BA in International Economics

zarlasht.muhammadrazeq [at]

Statement of Interest

Zarlasht’s areas of research are the political economy of international development, MNCs, and regime theories. Her PhD project, which focuses on the state-multinationals’ cooperation in international development, is supported by Joseph Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship.

Research Interests: Comparative Politics and International Relations.

Pechsiree Pechvijitra

B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Public Policy from the University of California at Berkeley

pechsiree.pechvijitra [at]


Statement of Interest

My research focuses on the effects of public policy and partisanship on voters’ decisions in Thailand. More generally, I am interested in the factors that shape voters’ attitudes about democracy and governance in developing democracies in Southeast Asia.

Colin Scott

MA Applied Social Psychology (University of Guelph)
MA Political Science (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

colin.scott2 [at]


Statement of Interest

My research interests broadly align with three themes: My primary interests focus on the political psychology of intercultural relations. In this regard, my doctoral research examines the roles of acculturation, intercultural contact and threat, and social identities on prejudice, discrimination and immigrant integration in multinational societies. Second, I partner with non-profit organizations and social service providers to conduct applied community-based research on social issues. Finally, I have a strong methodological interest in cross-cultural research methods and the application of social cognitive measures to the study of political behaviour and cognition. My research draws on experimental and non-experimental methods to explore these issues in the context of Canadian and Latin American politics.

Bilal Shakir

bilal.shakir [at]

Statement of Interest

Bilal is interested in understanding and evaluating modes and mechanisms of policy formulation in democratizing societies. Broadly speaking, he is interested in studying the linkage between the structure of domestic political infrastructure and democratic performance. Particularly, Bilal is interested in the usefulness of actively creating ‘democratic facades’ as a means of retaining autocratic power in democratizing societies.

Research Interests: Comparative politics and International relations.

Erik Underwood

erik.underwood [at]

Statement of Interest

Erik Underwood is currently pursuing his PhD degree in Political Science at McGill University under the supervision of T.V. Paul. Previously, he completed his masters at McGill and his undergraduate education at the University of Toronto. He specializes in international relations, with his main research interest being status relations in international politics. His research interests generally fall in the area of international relations theory, specifically security theory, and include balance of power theory, rising powers, middle powers, and nationalism. He is currently working on examining the role of nationalism in status competition, as well as the ways in which power can be used to alter the rules and norms of status competition.


Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Political Science, University of Delhi (Lady Shri Ram College for Women), 2010
Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding Post Graduate Diploma, University of Delhi, (Lady Shri Ram College for Women), 2011
Certificate Course in Human Rights, Indira Gandhi National Open University, 2011
Master of Arts in Political Science, Jawaharlal Nehru University, 2012
Master of Philosophy in Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, 2014

vertika.vertika [at]

Statement of Interest

Research Interests: Normative Political Theory with those who struggle, Comparative qualitative research on gender in India intersected with contemporary political theory on agency, Democratic Theory with special emphasis on Habermas' 'Discourse Ethics' and alternatives to deliberative democracy such as agonistic politics, Feminist, Race and Postcolonial Theory, Critical Theory, Biopolitics, Foucault and Foucauldian Methods, Marxism and Marxist scholarship, State and Constitutional Theory.

Hiba Zerrougui

hiba.zerrougui [at]


Statement of Interest

My dissertation examines state capacity building strategies in neopatrimonial regimes and relates them to contentious dynamics. I employ a mixed methods research design and focus on Middle East and North African politics.

Research Interests: Comparative clientelism, state-building, and contentious politics in authoritarian regimes.

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