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Conflict and Security

  • The Conflict and Security Concentration explores the rapidly changing terrains of war and peace. In recent years the old problems of international relations – focused on conflicts between sovereign states and big power diplomacy – have given way to a new and much more complex contemporary reality dominated by “non-traditional” conflicts. The Conflict and Security Concentration focuses in particular on the new relationships being forged between conflict and security and issues such as socioeconomic development, humanitarianism, and statebuilding. Students in the concentration learn to navigate this fascinating field as an area of theory, practice, and scholarly research. Courses in the concentration equip students with a range of practical and analytical skills relating to peacebuilding, humanitarian intervention, genocide, civil war, post-conflict justice and reconciliation, and other topics—alongside a range of critical perspectives on security. The concentration also provides a broad range of opportunities for research and practice. Through courses and practice opportunities students connect with the array of organizations in New York City working on peace, conflict, and security, particularly the UN. Issues of conflict, security, and peace are also explored through International Field Program sites in Colombia, South Africa, Brazil, Ethiopia, and other countries.

  • Faculty

    Stephen J. Collier

    Stephen J. Collier is an anthropologist who works on emergency preparedness and vital systems security. He has conducted research in Russia, Georgia, and the United States and has published on a range of topics including post-socialism, neoliberalism, infrastructure, social welfare, and contemporary security. He teaches Cities, Infrastructure, Development and chairs the Conflict and Security concentration.

    Jaskiran Dhillon

    Jaskiran Dhillon is an anthropologist who works on the state, critical indigenous studies, settler colonialism, youth studies, the anthropology of development, and ethnographic/curatorial methods. Her current research projects focus on indigeneity, decolonization, and climate justice and on the politics of development and youth organizing in contemporary Cambodia. She teaches Indigenous Politics and Environmental Justice, and her book Prairie Rising: Indigenous Youth, Decolonization, and the Politics of Intervention is forthcoming from the University of Toronto Press.

    Anna Di Lellio

    Anna Di Lellio is a political sociologist and policy analyst who works on the ethics of war and on nationalism and state building in the context of the Balkans. She is currently a consultant for the research project Influence Research: Understanding the Behavior of Combatants in War, funded by the International Committee of the Red Cross and the UK Department for International Development (DFID). She teaches Conflict, Morality, and Norms and Humanitarian Intervention.

    Cyril Ghosh

    Cyril Ghosh is a political scientist who specializes in political theory and American politics with research specializations in American government, identity politics and multiculturalism, LGBT studies, and immigration. He is the author of The Politics of the American Dream: Democratic Inclusion in Contemporary American Political Culture and teaches Research Methods and International LGBT Rights.

    Peter Hoffman

    Peter Hoffman studies irregular security organizations (militias, guerrillas, warlords, terrorists, and private military and security contractors), political economies of armed conflict, and security cultures. His forthcoming book examines changing beliefs of humanitarian agencies regarding the use of private security contractors to protect aid workers and scrutinizes the consequences of the increasing use of hired guns by relief organizations. He teaches Critical Security Studies, Politics of Humanitarianism, and Contemporary Conflicts and Global Responses. 

    Nina L. Khrushcheva

    Nina L. Khrushcheva works on Russian politics and culture, propaganda, global media, and world politics. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and her articles appear regularly in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, and other publications. Her latest book is The Lost Khrushchev: A Journey Into the Gulag of the Russian Mind (2014). Khrushcheva teaches Propaganda and Media, Russia's Democratic Experiment, and Hollywood and the World.

    Tony Karon

    Tony Karon is a New York-based journalist and is currently the senior online executive producer for Al Jazeera America. Previously he worked as a senior editor at TIME magazine, covering international conflicts in the Middle East, Asia, and the Balkans for more than 20 years. He has contributed to The National (Abu Dhabi), Haaretz (Israel), and the Sunday Times (South Africa). Karon is a former anti-apartheid activist and is currently working on a book about nationalism and Jewish identity. He teaches Media and the Middle East and Global Soccer, Global Politics.

    L.H.M. Ling

    L.H.M. Ling studies knowledge production and its impact on problem solving in international relations. She integrates non-Western epistemes with the Westphalian system of interstate security to arrive at a more balanced, democratic approach to world politics. Ling teaches Non-Western Approaches to the World, An Evening on the Silk Road, India-China Interactions, and Theories of Global Politics.

    Peter Lucas

    Peter Lucas, a 2012 Guggenheim Fellow, works on issues of human rights, with an emphasis on participatory media, documentary practice, photography, human rights education, and youth media. Lucas works with the visual memorial of personal photographs of victims and lethal violence in order to investigate the role that memory and documentation play in postconflict society. In addition to directing the International Field Program in Brazil, Lucas teaches The Poetics of Witnessing within the Conflict and Security concentration.

    Erin McCandless

    Erin McCandless is a scholar and policy advisor in the areas of conflict and fragility and in the prevention of and sustainable recovery from violent conflict. She is an executive editor of the Journal of Peacebuilding and Development, and her current research includes societal and system resilience, social contracts and political compacts, and assessing progress in peacebuilding and statebuilding. In the Conflict and Security concentration, she teaches Conflict, Peacebuilding, and Development and Statebuilding and Peacebuilding.

    Stephen Metts

    Stephen Metts has extensive experience with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and planning in both urban and regional contexts. He is the founding principal of Geospex, a GIS consultancy specializing in cartographic design, spatial analysis, and mapping applications. Metts has worked with a diverse group of organizations, firms, and city agencies, including the international organization Engineers Without Borders. His course GIS for International Crises, Development, and the Environment offers a hands-on approach to geospatial technologies while focusing on issues relevant to international affairs.

    Daniel Naujoks

    Daniel Naujoks is a social and political scientist whose primary research interests are international migration, development, citizenship, and transnational studies. Naujoks does policy advisory work for a number of United Nations agencies and serves as the research coordinator for the Organisation for Diaspora Initiatives (ODI), New Delhi.  His publications focus on citizenship, migration, and diaspora, and he teaches Displacement, Asylum, Migration.

    Dean Piedmont

    Dean Piedmont is a program and policy expert in conflict prevention, peacebuilding, recovery livelihoods, and reintegration who specializes in disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration. He has served with government, bilateral, and nongovernmental organizations, including ten years with UNDP from 2004 to 2014. Piedmont has worked in Iraq, Sierra Leone, South(ern) Sudan, and Afghanistan and is currently the managing director for the Peacebuilding, Reintegration and Stabilization Assessment Group. He teaches Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration in Contemporary Peace Operations.

    Filip Pospisil

    Filip Pospisil

    Everita Silina

    Everita Silina is a political scientist whose research examines the relationship between security, identity, and models of governance. Her publications focus on questions of genocide, human rights, and international law. In addition to directing the Istanbul International Field Program, Silina teaches Critical Security Studies and Ethnic Conflict and Genocide.


    Conflict, Morality, and Norms – Anna Di Lellio

    Conflict, Peacebuilding, and Development – Erin McCandless

    Conflicts and Global Responses - Peter Hoffman

    Contemporary Conflicts and Global Responses - Peter Hoffman

    Critical Security Studies (Foundation Course) - Peter Hoffman and Everita Silina

    Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration in Contemporary Peace Operations – Dean Piedmont

    Hollywood and the World - Nina Khrushcheva

    Humanitarian Intervention - Anna Di Lellio

    Indigenous Politics and Environmental Justice - Jaskiran Dhillon

    International LGBT Rights - Cyril Ghosh

    Media and the Middle East – Tony Karon

    Media and Politics of Propaganda - Nina Khrushcheva

    Mobility and Forced Migration – Daniel Naujoks

    Non-Western Approaches to World Politics – L.H.M. Ling 

    Planning and Counter-Planning - Stephen Collier

    The Poetics of Witnessing - Peter Lucas

    Postcolonial and Feminist Theories in International Relations - L.H.M. Ling

    Statebuilding and Peacebuilding – Erin McCandless

    Surveillance, Privacy, and Human Rights – Filip Pospisil

    The United Nations and World Order - Peter Hoffman