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HUIRSP Ambassador Research


A collection of essays written by alumni of the Harvard International Relations Scholars Programme. Views expressed in these essays are solely those of their authors.

Name: Eahsan Abedin

School: St. Joseph Higher Secondary School

Title: Capitalism and Democracy: Downfall in the 21st Century

Summary: My personal take and opinion on democracy and capitalism today; arguments are mostly backed up by articles from different reliable sources and also based on my own notion about the topic. The article includes my personal relation to the subject, the general condition of the problem today, a brief in-depth look into the problem itself and it's causes and finally, the solution.

Name: Malaq Ali

School: California High School

Title: Capitalism and Democracy: Nasser’s Impact on Egyptian and Russian Relations: An Alliance Dating Back Decades

Summary: This is an article claiming the impact of Gamal Abdel Nasser's relationship with the USSR has influenced Egypt's modern relationship with Russia. The Suez Canal crisis was the major turning point in Nasser's alliance with the USSR and influenced Egyptian President, Sisi's, partnership with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Name: Farhan Babur

School: BASIS Scottsdale

Title: Islamophobia and Sinophobia: An analysis on the Spread of Xenophobia within the United States

Summary: International Events can serve as catalysts for xenophobia, which can be primarily propagated by the Media and Government. Islamophobia and Sinophobia demonstrate this, and through these examples we can learn how to combat this xenophobia.

Name: Seokhyun (Nathan) Baek

School: Gyeonggi Suwon International School

Title: The Failed US Embargo on Cuba

Summary: The essay begins with a brief, yet interesting lead of Cuba to grab the readers' attention as you never know when the readers stop reading. Then, the essay flows to Cuba's part-take in history and how that impacted the US. Likewise, an informative argument is established when the essay describes the US and Cuba's relationship regarding the Soviet Union.

Name: Eliana Balle

School: Oakwood School

Title: The Future of Cryptocurrency in the Developing World: Economic Solvency or Pointless?

Summary: As 2021 came to a close, hyperinflation levels in the developing world looked worrying at best. While economists in the United States began fretting over predictions of 15% inflation by the end of 2022, those living in the developing world–, or countries with low industrialization, and high poverty, or /shortages–, struggle with levels as high as 10,000% which causes a multitude of problems.

Name: Mario Baluta

School: Ion Luca Caragiale National College

Title: Sources of Chinese Conduct: a close examination of Communism

Summary: In China, Communism had two periods of evolution that came with different methods of applying it. This essay talks about the evolution of the above mentioned ideology, why it was required, and what has changed over the years.

Name: Ava Blum

School: Georgetown Day School

Title: How HUFPI Has Helped Me: An Individual Reflection on International Relations

Summary: In my personal essay, I discuss the IR framework that drives my fascination with understanding foreign policy, and the way HUFPI has helped shape and understand the way I think about global issues. I write about how understanding of nations' self-interests, as well as their values, can inform effective, peaceful action in international relations in the hope that my journey will inspire others onto the same path. And ultimately, my essay demonstrates the evolution of my personal passion for this purpose.

Name: Nathan Chan

School: Shanghai American School

Title: A Case Study of Misplaced Nostalgia for Colonial Hong Kong

Summary: It is dangerous to make sweeping generalizations by only looking at the last two decades of a 155-year British colonial administration of Hong Kong. It is incomplete to look at any colonial rule without a full reflection.

Name: John Chang

School: Eton College

Title: An ethical groundwork for foreign military intervention

Summary: When should nations interfere with each other's actions? This essay seeks to answer that question using a mix of philosophical and practical considerations, hoping to reach a general framework for foreign intervention.

Name: Wenshi Chen

School: American Heritage High School

Title: Human Rights——A Dispute Between East and West

Summary: It is an informative essay that covers and analyzes the history of East and West human rights concepts, differences and similarities between perspectives, causes of the political tension due to the conflict, and finally presenting some solutions that can help solve the conflict.

Name: Emily Chen

School: Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High

Title: Expansion of Cyberspace; Its Effects and Ethical Dilemmas

Summary: I wrote about cybersecurity; what it is and its importance/effects in the US/world. I mention cyber warfare and what cyber crimes US adversaries have previously made. Lastly, I talk about the ethics of cybersecurity and the difficulties of balancing privacy and security within the country.

Name: Katie Cheung

School: Noble and Greenough

Title: U.S. Geopolitical Interests During Genocide: A Look into Rwanda, Cambodia, and Kosovo

Summary: Since genocide was declared to be an international crime by the United Nations in 1948, many horrific acts of violence have occurred, specifically in Rwanda, Cambodia, and Kosovo. The (lack of) response to these three genocides from the international community, specifically the United States, was cast into the spotlight. The extent to which the United States expended monetary or military resources to become involved in the Rwandan, Cambodian, and Kosovo genocides directly correlated with its economic and geopolitical interests.

Name: Siya Chhabra

School: International Academy Okma

Title: Propaganda Deja Vu: Seeing Current Misinformation Through the Lens of Communist China

Summary: The topic described in this essay is the connection and similarity between Communist propaganda during the Great Leap Forward era and current COVID-19 misinformation. My essay pertains to recognizing how advertisement changes public view, and how China in particular is a nation in which the progression of propaganda can be seen clearly.

Name: Sofia Detjen

School: Lone Peak High School

Title: The Rising Ethiopia

Summary: Ethiopia and its future. The internal and external events that Ethiopia can use to either make or break its future.

Name: Sofia Doroshenko

School: Macalester College

Title: The Borscht Debate

Summary: This essay describes the political implications of a cultural beet dish. In addition, it is somewhat meant to be a personal essay which explains how my love for international relations began with this dish.

Name: Neal Frankenberg

School: Kurfürst-Friedrich-Gymnasium, Heidelberg

Title: EU Enlargement in the Western Balkans: Is Anything Even Happening?

Summary: My informational essay describes the current situation of EU Enlargement within the Western Balkans region, and the impacts that enlargement could have. It briefly goes over the history of enlargement in the region, then covers the status of each country within the region regarding enlargement, and also summarizes the consequences enlargement could have, for the Western Balkans, the EU, and foreign powers.

Name: Lily Haak

School: Miami Beach Senior High

Title: Education and Terrorism: The Struggle for Middleastern Women

Summary: An informational piece on recent and ongoing developments in women's education in the MENA region, comparison of men's and women's access to civil rights and academic opportunity in the MENA region, the effects of high illiteracy rates among women, Islamist Extremist groups and their targeting and recruitment of young women, international response to the withdrawal from Afghanistan, and recent policy changes advancing women's rights in the Middle East.

Name: Sophia Hall

School: Holton-Arms

Title: An Unsettling Precedent: Successful Invasions Establishing Expansionist Powers

Summary: In the spirit of nationalism, countries use force to alter territorial borders based on “ancient” claims to territory belonging to other countries. This desire, known as revanchism, justified and propelled Nazi Germany forward in its quest for expansion. A successful invasion of Ukraine would establish Russia as a dominant, expansionist power. If Russia successfully invades and takes possession of much of Ukraine and faces no dramatic pushback from other nations, China may feel emboldened to invade Taiwan.

Name: Sophia Hassen

School: James W. Robinson Secondary School

Title: The Wealth Gap and Its Effect on Quality of Care for the Disabled

Summary: In my essay, I discuss the wealth gap between countries and its effect on quality of care for the disabled. I explain the foundations in place to provide disabled citizens a high standard of living, while also highlighting the disparities disabled citizens continue to face. In addition, I speak about my personal experiences serving people with disabilities, and I advocate for equality for disabled citizens by expressing small changes individuals can make that can make a big difference.

Name: Megha Khemka

School: Walter Payton College Preparatory High School

Title: The Price of Protest: What the Uyghur Crisis in Xinjiang Demonstrates About China on the World Stage

Summary: In recent years, a number of governments and independent organizations have expressed grave concerns regarding the treatment of Uyghurs in the Xinjiang province, who are being detained in what China claims are deradicalization, vocational training centers. This paper argues that the international and Chinese responses to the developing situation demonstrate a world of international relations increasingly dominated by soft power and economic diplomacy, where corporations become foreign affairs actors and so-called ‘Western’ world powers are faced with the task of rebutting the heft of what is becoming a Chinese neocolonial empire.

Name: Sophie Lamb

School: Jackson Hole High School

Title: The Role of Rural Communities in Combating Global Climate Change

Summary: This essay seeks to provide an overview of the extent to which climate change and exploitation affect rural communities, and then, in turn, identify the importance of rural voices in addressing such issues. It primarily uses my personal experience in rural Wyoming to tie these ideas together.

Name: Lucido Balestriere

School: Instituto Santísima Virgen Niña

Title: South America Democratic Crisis - Red Flags in Democratic Processes

Summary: The essay consists of a result summary of an analysis of South American Democracies, based on its performance on The 2021 Democracy Index. The Argument detachs the lowest performing points of the Democracies: “Functioning of the Government”, “Political Culture” and “Political Participation”, searching its weakest points to strengthen them. As well as comparing the most and less effective democracies of the continent. Its conclusions are built on the Role of trust in South American democracies and how this factor affects deeply the South American Democratic crisis.

Name: Gilbert Meng

School: Oaks Christian School

Title: History, World Order, and Meaning

Summary: If history as repetition kills the meaning for history as progress, we can look Nietzsche for motivation for political action.

Name: Nikita Menshikov

School: Theresianum Academy

Title: China’s Belt and Road Initiative in Eastern and Central Europe

Summary: This essay will explore the current activity and implications of the BRI in Eastern and Central Europe through the analysis of the Budapest-Belgrade railway and how the railway will eventually transport Chinese products from Piraeus port in Greece to the heart of Europe. This essay will also discuss smaller projects in countries such as Montenegro.

Name: Ariana Molina Peralta

School: San Ignacio de Loyola University

Title: The UNHCR work in the Syria Crisis

Summary: The extensive work that the UN sub-agency has been carrying out, the UNHCR seeking the protection and assistance of refugees due to the civil crisis unleashed in Syria from 2011 to the present with an effort to guarantee that all people have the right to seek asylum and find a little peace in a world full of chaos.

Name: Lucas Moreno

School: Colégio Militar do Rio de Janeiro

Title: AUKUS: Brazil's Shot at Becoming More Nuclear

Summary: This essay analyses the implications of the creation of AUKUS, a conjunct pact between Australia, the US, and the UK, for other countries, such as France, but most importantly to Brazil. The agreement between the three countries to develop a "more secure" Indo-Pacific Region could be beneficial for the Brazilian Government in many ways, on either side of the "diplomatic conflicts".

Name: Erica Moyo

School: Westlake Academy

Title: The impact of cryptocurrency on foreign relations between America and Foreign countries

Summary: My essay discusses the how cryptocurrency works , it limitations , and the policies imposed on its growth . It emphasizes on how the lack of diplomacy can impact The United Sates in Cryptocurrency investment.

Name: Sreya Mulukutla

School: William Mason High School

Title: European Migration Crisis: Then and Now

Summary: With the end of the war in Afghanistan, migration to Europe drastically increased, yet the EU's migration policies are much more hostile than in previous years. This left thousands of Afghans stranded in Serbia and other bordering countries of the EU, hoping to seek refuge in an EU country.

Name: Kaushik Pardeshi

School: Symbiosis International School

Title: If Macron wins the French election, What does it mean for the EU?

Summary: The essay discusses EU foreign policy under the French Presidency of the EU with Macron as the President of France. The central idea is that Macron will focus on European autonomy and centrality and work on creating amicable ties with other nation with that perspective.

Name: SoEun Park

School: International Academy

Title: Reconsidering the Costs and Benefits of Korean Reunification: From Two to One Nation

Summary: This informational essay reconsiders both the costs and benefits of Korean Reunification. After exploring the Korean war and prospects of Korean reunification, the essay delves into the various economic, political, and security factors. It also investigates the future of a unified Korea after evaluating the costs and benefits.

Name: Sania Patel

School: Brentwood High School

Title: The Spread of Radicalized Ideology: Then Vs. Today

Summary: This essay studies Hitler's fascist ideology and it's manifestation into the Nazi movement. Through common themes of fear, gain, and societal pressures, the essay relates how radicalized ideas were promoted during WWII, and how those techniques are used today.

Name: Katarina Radulovic

School: Notre Dame School of Manhattan

Title: Economic and Currency Destabilization amidst Environments of Armed Conflict and Insurrection in Bosnia and Herzegovina following the Breakup of the Former Yugoslavia

Summary: This work explored economic and currency destabilization in Bosnia and Herzegovina during the onset, height, and resolution of the conflict during the 1990s following the dissolution of the former Yugoslavia. Through research that includes an interview with a young Bosnian economist who lived through the conflict, the argument evidenced the concept that currency which is untethered to a treasury or credit guarantee holds the possibility to be completely unhinged. As well, the logical reasoning of the work highlights the understanding that financial options such as non-fungible tokens and even cryptocurrency hold significant risks as these are not tied to a specific currency.

Name: Atasha Louise Santos

School: Reedley International School

Title: Africa and Latin America in the Drug Trade and the prospect of an Intercontinental Alliance

Summary: The essay covers the connection Latin America and Africa has in terms of the global drug trade: cocaine routes, transit hubs, etc. It also examines the prospect of an alliance between these continents for countering narcotics.

Name: Patrick Schraeder

School: Saint Viator Highschool

Title: Lessons from Afghan Refugees

Summary: My essay entails the experiences of refugees at Saint Viator House of Hospitality, which is an organization that house refugees. The essay regards what I have learned from these refugees after spending many months getting to know them.

Name: Elizabeth Segal

School: Brooklyn Technical High School

Title: Financial Instability Within Developing Countries: The Economic Gap For Achieving Sustainable Development Goals

Summary: Through the way that financial innovations and distributions have been allocated to the international community, it is clear that low-income countries have been left behind and financial institutions have yet to maintain a system that sufficiently grants equitable funding flows from private finance. As exemplified by events that initiated economic crises such as climate change and food fluctuation prices, both digital and green economy need to be considered to prompt successful sustainable development, while also supporting economic recovery. Environmental legislation is integrated with the goals of improving environmental protection however policy makers are faced with the challenge of balancing the community’s self-determination and the indisputable facilities.

Name: Seoyoung Shin

School: The Stony Brook School

Title: Culture Smoothie

Summary: Political tensions in Asian countries (especially South Korea and China) due to cultural distortions and confusions. It starts with my personal experience of the akward first impression with my Chinese room mate and how we blended together. This essay is a mixture of my personal experiences and a little bit a historical background.

Name: Sanjana Sitaram

School: Brentwood High School

Title: The Strategic Importance of the US- India Relationship

Summary: The main points are on the history of the US- India relationship. The next point is on each country's relationship with China, and future recomendations to strengthen the US- India relationship.

Name: Julienne Valdez

School: Southeast Career and Technical Academy

Title: With the recent COP26 summit and new developments in the climate crisis, will we be able to recover before it’s too late?

Summary: My essay is about the COP26 climate meeting and it argues that the commitments made during the conference needed to be more ambitious. It provides current climate change data and talks what countries plan to do about climate change based on COP26 results.

Name: Caining Zhao

School: The Experimental High School Attached to Beijing Normal University

Title: Why did Sino-Australian relations collapse?

Summary: While it may seem at first sight that the collapse in Sino-Australian relations was due to ideological disagreements pertaining to the coronavirus and “human rights situation in Xinjiang”, it was ultimately caused by the realpolitik concerns and revealed much about how the Chinese government handles its foreign policy and areas where potential clashes between Beijing and other, especially Western states could stem from. This essay attempts to analyze the issue from both realpolitikal and opinion-level distinctions to identify why the collapse really happened, tracing back to the list of grievances that Beijing saw as hostility from Canberra.

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