Shannon P. Carcelli

Shannon P. Carcelli

Ph.D. Candidate, Political Science

University of California, San Diego

I am a Ph.D. Candidate specializing in International Relations and American Foreign Policy at the University of California, San Diego.

It is tempting to think of foreign aid as a homogeneous, country-level policy instrument. But in fact, foreign aid tools are often fragmented and disjointed within donor countries, causing inefficiencies and foreign policy failures that we still do not understand. To explain and measure the fragmentation of the U.S. foreign aid environment, I build on theories of American political institutions and use a mixed-methods approach that combines robust quantitative analysis on a novel dataset, elite interviews, and process tracing. I conclude that fragmented foreign aid can be an unintended consequence of Congress's attempt to overcome political gridlock and pass often-unpopular foreign aid bills.