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IARI | Regional Expertise

The Americas


Associate Professor Charles Call focuses on post-war governance and peacebuilding, democratization, human rights and policing, and justice and security sector reform. He has conducted field research in all of Central America and West Africa, the Balkans, South America, and Afghanistan. His most recent book, Why Peace Fails: The Causes and Prevention of Civil War Recurrence, (Georgetown University Press), was released in 2012. Call is currently fulfilling an assignment at the U.S. Department of State and has held a number of fellowships, including serving as a Senior Fellow of the U.S. Institute of Peace. Click here for more information.



Professor Ken Conca's research and teaching focus on global environmental governance, environmental peacebuilding in war-torn societies, environmental politics and policy in the United Nations system, and international water policy. He is the author and editor of several books on international environmental politics, including Governing Water, Confronting Consumption, Environmental Peacemaking, and the widely used teaching anthology Green Planet Blues. Dr. Conca received external funding in 2012 to convene representatives of multilateral organizations, NGOs, the private sector and government to examine the risks of environmental degradation during post-disaster recovery and alternatives for green recovery and reconstruction. Other current projects include editing The Oxford Handbook of Water Politics and Policy (Oxford University Press, in preparation) and a book project on the role of peacebuilding and human rights in strengthening global environmental governance through the UN system. Conca is a member of the United Nations Environment Programme’s Expert Advisory Group on Environment, Conflict and Peacebuilding and served for several years as associate editor of the journal Global Environmental Politics. Click here for more information.



Assistant Professor Maria De Jesus specializes in the area of health inequalities, with a particular focus on cross-cultural communication and health promotion. She is interested in how ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and migration status interact to affect health outcomes as well as the impact of cross-cultural communication and relationship building in the work of community health workers. In 2012, De Jesus was awarded a grant from the District of Columbia's Developmental Center for AIDS Research to study and design enhancements to HIV/AIDS prevention messaging to populations of African immigrant women in the District of Columbia. Also, at present, De Jesus is collaborating with Assistant Professor Nina Yamanis on an examination of Latino men in the District of Columbia, the second-largest population group afflicted with HIV/AIDS in Washington. Their joint project will lay the groundwork for a future intervention project aimed at decreasing the rate of HIV transmission among Latino men. In recent years, her research has been published in Ethnicity & Health, Health Communication, Intercultural Management Quarterly, Policy and Internet, Journal of Oncology, Journal of Religion and Health, Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, Health & Place, and Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health. Click here for more information.



Assistant Professor Daniel Esser’s research examines governance and program evaluation in fragile settings, in particular in the context of institution-building in cities in the Global South and resulting frictions between local and international interests and approaches. He also investigates issue prioritization and policy emergence in development assistance for health. He recently returned from Cuidad Juarez, Mexico where he conducted externally funded research on the drivers of resilience among local residents during periods of extreme violence. He has led similar research projects in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Sierra Leone. In addition, Esser conducts research on agenda-setting, policy emergence and funding prioritization in global health. His current projects investigate causes of inefficiency and ineffectiveness in development assistance in support of addressing challenges resulting from aging populations in the Global South, as well as the political economy of country ownership in the context of HIV prevention campaigns and AIDS treatment programs. He has published on related topics in leading scholarly journals such as World Development, Global Public Health, and Ethics & International Affairs. Click here for more information.



Associate Professor Carolyn Gallaher is a broadly trained political geographer whose work blends insights from political economy and cultural studies. She is the author of two books on right-wing paramilitaries. The first, After the Peace: Loyalist Paramilitaries in Post-Accord Northern Ireland, explains how loyalist paramilitary infighting after the 1998 peace process stalled the demilitarization process. The second, On the Fault Line: Race, Class, and the American Patriot Movement, is the culmination of five years of research on the U.S. militia movement. She has also published numerous articles on the religious right and Mexican politics. Click here for more information.

Agustina Giraudy, who will join the school in Fall 2013 as an assistant professor, is currently an Academy Scholar at the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies. Her research focuses on subnational democracy in Argentina and Mexico, subnational institutions and federalism in Latin America. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Journal of Politics in Latin America, Studies in Comparative International Development, Latin American Research Review, Journal of Democracy (en Español), Revista de Ciencia Política (Chile), among others. She was the co-winner of the 2010 Juan Linz Prize for Best Dissertation in the Comparative Study of Democracy awarded by the American Political Science Association. Click here for more information.



Assistant Professor Garrett Graddy is a cultural and political geographer, researching the political ecologies and political economies of food and agriculture. She is currently writing a book on in situ agricultural biodiversity initiatives in the Peruvian Andes and Appalachian United States, contextualizing such grassroots conservation within larger goals of community food security in an era of global climate change and the regeneration of what is alternately called ‘traditional’ or place-based ecological and agrarian knowledge. The book explores related international policies on food security, agrobiodiversity conservation, genetic intellectual property, and agribiotechnology research-funding and regulations. This research also engages post-colonial theory and the interplay of gender, labor, and agricultural cooperatives in Peru, the United States, and Cuba. Click here for more information.



Assistant Professor Sikina Jinnah's research focuses on the changing dynamics of power and influence in global environmental politics. Recently, she has examined the role of international bureaucracies in managing the politics of overlapping international regimes in the areas of biodiversity, climate change, and international trade. Her most recent work explores the diffusion of environmental policy through US and EU bilateral and regional trade agreements. She has published in Global Environmental Politics, Science Magazine and Georgetown International Environmental Law Review, among others, and is presently finishing her book manuscript, which MIT Press has signaled its interest in publishing. Click here for more information.



Professor Clarence Lusane has regional expertise in Europe and and the Americas and specializes in international race politics, human rights, human security, and electoral politics. He is the former Co-Chair of the U.S. Civil Society Committee of the Brazil-U.S. Joint Action Plan for the Elimination of Racism, a government-to-government project to address the issue of racism in Brazil. He is currently conducting research on the impact of the 2008 Obama campaign on global discourses and politics of race and identity. He is completing a book on the links between the local, national and international economy on black employment and social stability. A third area of his research examines the intersection of jazz and international relations, specifically on how jazz has been politically and ideologically appropriated by a wide range of social groups in the international community. Click here for more information.




Assistant Professor Simon Nicholson's research and teaching interests focus on the politics of food and agriculture, global environmental and energy politics, and issues to do with emerging technologies. Ongoing research projects include work on global fisheries, genetically modified foods, the character of effective scholarship in a world increasingly stressed by environmental harm, and tackling climate change via large-scale technological interventions. His academic and policy-oriented writing has appeared in such journals as Global Environmental Politics, Foreign Policy, and Sustainable Development Law and Policy, as well as in a number of edited books. He has previously received funding from the Academic Council on the United Nations System, the Oikos Foundation, and Fulbright. Click here for more information.



Distinguished Economist in Residence Arturo C. Porzecanski is an expert in international finance, emerging markets and Latin American economics. He is also a Senior Associate of the Americas Program at CSIS. He carries out and publishes research in international finance; provides consulting services to legal and financial firms, as well as to U.S. government agencies and multilateral institutions; teaches at the Inter-American Defense College; and serves as a Dispute Resolution Arbitrator for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. His research takes place mostly at the intersection of international finance and international financial law. His articles "Behind the Greek Default and Restructuring of 2012" and "Borrowing and Debt: How Do Sovereigns Get Into Trouble?" will be published shortly in two scholarly books. Click here for more information.




Associate Professor Cathy Schneider researches social movements, political violence, criminal justice, race, ethnicity, and immigration in Europe (particularly France), the United States, and Latin America (particularly Chile).  Her manuscript, Police Power and Race Riots: Urban Unrest in Paris and New York 1960-2010 (under review), Violence and State Repression: Debating the Arab Spring, Police Power and Race Riots in Paris, Made in Marseilles: Policing and the Deactivation of Racial Boundaries in Southern France, Violence, Identity and Spaces of Contention in Argentina, Chile, and Colombia, Racism, Drug Policy and AIDS, and Framing Puerto Rican Identity. Click here for more information.


Assistant Professor Matthew Taylor's research and teaching interests include corruption and organized crime, judicial politics, and Latin American political economy. He is the author of Judging Policy: Courts and Policy Reform in Democratic Brazil, and co-editor of Corruption and Democracy in Brazil: The Struggle for Accountability. In addition, he has published in World Politics, Perspectives on Politics, Law and Social Inquiry, Comparative Politics, Economics of Governance, among others. He has lived and worked extensively in Brazil, most recently as an assistant professor at the University of São Paulo. Click here for more information.