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Javed Khan

Undergraduate Major: Political Science and History

McNair Mentor:
Dr. Bernadette Jungblut, Student Development and Enrollment Services

Status: History M.A. at the University of Central Florida

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Javed Khan

Mr. Khan has double bachelor’s degrees, in Political Science and History, with a minor in Economics. He came to the University of Central Florida from New York City for his undergraduate course work, and was born in Georgetown, Guyana. He has participated in Ronald E. McNair Post Baccalaureate Achievement Scholar and has completed two Honors in the Major Thesis. In the past, Mr. Khan has been a Research and Mentoring Program Scholar (RAMP), and a Student Academic Research Team Scholar (SMART).

Title: A Tale of Two Countries: Ghana and Malaysia’s Divergent Development Paths

Conducted at the University of Central Florida in the Fall of 2008 as part of the UCF Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program as well as the UCF Honors in the Major Program.

Mentor: Dr. Bernadette Jungblut, Student Development and Enrollment Services

Abstract: This project investigates the political and economic development of Ghana and Malaysia and identifies key factors that led to their divergent development paths – specifically Malaysia’s relative success and Ghana’s setbacks. Both Malaysia and Ghana are former British colonies that gained their independence in the same year. Although they had similar economic conditions at independence, over the course of 40 years, they have experienced very different economic and political development. Thus, this study begins with a most similar systems design but winds up employing a most different systems model. Measures of economic and political development are drawn from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the International Monetary Fund, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the POLITY project (political regime characteristics and transitions), and Freedom House. Measures of the type and extent of ethnic cleavages and their impact on the creation and reform of political and economic institutions are also examined. This study aims to identify patterns for successful – and unsuccessful – development using Malaysia and Ghana as archetypes.

Awards: Research grant proposal submitted to, and approved by, the UCF College of Arts and Humanities HIM Scholarship committee, for $1,000, November-May 2009.

Title: Election Technologies in Florida: Voter Error and Disenfranchisement

Conducted at the University of Central Florida as part of ongoing research for the Research and Mentoring Program and the Burnett Honors College Office of Research and Civic Engagement.

Mentor: Terri S. Fine, Polical Science

Abstract:This study identifies characteristics that cause systematic disenfranchisement of certain groups due to higher rates of voter error. The relationships between technological, demographic, and economic variables and patterns of voter error are examined across all 67 Florida counties for the 2002 and 2006 gubernatorial elections. In terms of technology, Florida used both touchscreen and optical scan voting in those elections. The debate over the accuracy and accountability of touchscreen technology has been prominent and resulted in Florida banning this technology. Demographic factors investigated include county population, race, and age. Socioeconomic factors examined include median household income and education. Demographic and socioeconomic data were derived from the US Census. Election data were compiled from the Florida division of elections. Understanding the role of technology, and its interaction with demographic and socioeconomic factors, may lead to the development of better election technologies. Identifying the effects of technology, demographic characteristics, and socioeconomic variables on county-wide levels of voter error may aid in its reduction. Ultimately, a more complete understanding of the linkages between and among these factors may help us to discern the impact of voter error on systematic disenfranchisement.

Publications

Khan, J. (2009). A tale of two countries: Ghana and Malaysia’s divergent development paths, Honors in the Major Thesis, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida. (Committee Chair: Dr. Ezekiel Walker)

Khan, J. (2008). The effects of technology, demographic, and economic factors on voter error: An analysis of the 2002 and 2006 Florida gubernatorial elections, Honors in the Major Thesis, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida. (Committee Chair: Dr. Terri S. Fine)

Khan, J. (2007). “Undervoting and overvoting in the 2002 and 2006 Florida gubernatorial elections: Are touchscreens the solution?” The University of Central Florida Undergraduate Research Journal, 2(1). Retrieved January 24, 2008, from http://www.urj.ucf.edu/vol2issue1/khan/