• Dorothy Settles

    Co-Founder and President of Spheres of Influence.

    Dorothy is originally from Tempe, Arizona, and graduated from the University of British Columbia with a B.A. in International Relations and History in 2020. Her main research interests are human rights, armed conflict, and migration, with a strong focus on the Asia-Pacific region. Outside of the academic world, she loves Leonard Cohen, solo backpacking trips, and making dim sum.

    Event: Media Representations of Palestine (Aug 5th)

    Spheres of Influence is partnering with the UBC Middle East Studies Students Association and UBC Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights to host the event Media Representations of Palestine. The event will take place on August 5th, 2021 from 5-6 pm PDT on Zoom. To attend, you must register ahead of

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    Chinese Expansion and Shifting Allegiances in the South Pacific

    In recent decades, China’s global influence has grown substantially. Part of President Xi Jinping’s  foreign policy strategy has been to invest heavily in remote and far-flung regions across the world, assembling a devoted band of small aid-dependent nations. One strategic area that has grasped China’s attention is the South Pacific,

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    TikTok and the Fracturing of the Internet

    Over the past few months, millions of bored teenagers scrolled through TikTok, the hit short video social media app, to cope with the seemingly endless amount of free time during quarantine. While viral videos of dancing and lip synching appear to be as harmless as it gets, the platform has

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    The Rohingya Genocide is Rooted in British Colonialism

    Satellite images of townships in Myanmar’s Rakhine State reveal entire Rohingya villages that have been burned to the ground, reduced to smouldering rubble and ash, while nearby ethnic Rakhine Buddhist villages remain intact.  In the past few years, Myanmar has engaged in an ethnic cleansing campaign against the Rohingya Muslim

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    What’s the Belt and Road Initiative?

    Introduction In 2013, China announced the inception of the Belt and Road Initiative, its colossal plan to create a massive network of global trade and invest in infrastructure development in dozens of countries across the world. Since its inception, the BRI has caused a worldwide stir. Some countries view it

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    The Beirut Port Explosion was Caused by Decades of Corruption

    On August 4, 2020, a fire broke out in Beirut’s main port. Shortly after, around 6:00 pm local time, a colossal explosion shook the city, leveling buildings. After some initial confusion, as the country is no stranger to explosions from air strikes and car bombs, it was determined that the

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    The Proxy War that Created Yemen’s Humanitarian Crisis

    Yemen has been engulfed in a bloody civil war and a resulting even more calamitous humanitarian crisis for years. In 2015, the Houthi rebel group overthrew the official government, which led to an ongoing war that resulted in the deaths of over 20,000 civilians and displaced over 3.65 million. Additionally,

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    COVID-19’s Disproportionate Impact on the Navajo Nation

    In a March 31 tweet, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo called COVID-19 the “great equalizer,” intending to insinuate that anybody – regardless of age, wealth, or race – could potentially contract the virus. While this is technically true, the reality is that certain demographic groups have been disproportionately hit and

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