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Susan Shepler Associate Professor School of International Service

Send email to Susan Shepler
(202) 885-2454 (Office)
SIS-School of Intl Service
SIS - 209
Wednesdays 4-7 PM or by appointment
PhD, social and cultural studies in education, University of California, Berkeley

MA, mathematics, University of California, Berkeley

BA, mathematics, University of California, Santa Cruz

Book Currently Reading
Indigenous and Decolonizing Studies in Education
Dr. Shepler's research interests include youth and conflict, reintegration of former child soldiers, post-conflict reconstruction, refugees, education and economic development, NGOs and globalization, transitional justice, and Ebola. In addition to her academic work, Dr. Shepler has conducted research for UNICEF, the IRC, and Search for Common Ground. Her work has appeared in The Journal of Modern African Studies, Africa Today, Anthropology Today, and the Journal of Human Rights. Her book on the reintegration of former child soldiers in Sierra Leone, Childhood Deployed, was published by NYU Press in June 2014.
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For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Selected Publications

  • “Understanding Sierra Leonean and Liberian teachers’ views on discussing past wars in their classrooms” (co-authored with James H. Williams).  Special issue of Comparative Education on education and transitional justice. 53(3): 418-441. Co-edited by Michelle Bellino, Elizabeth Worden, and Julia Paulson.  Published online, June 17, 2017.
  • “‘We Know Who is Eating the Ebola Money!’: Corruption, the State, and the Ebola Response” Anthropological Quarterly, 90(2): 457-480. In special issue on Production of Knowledge about Ebola, co-edited by Susan Shepler and Catherine Bolten. 2017.
  • “Producing Ebola: Creating Knowledge in and About an Epidemic.” (co-authored with Catherine Bolten).  Introduction to special issue of Anthropological Quarterly, 90(2): 355-374. In special issue on Production of Knowledge about Ebola, co-edited by Susan Shepler and Catherine Bolten. 2017.
  • “Fears and Misperceptions of the Ebola Response System during the 2014-2015 Outbreak in Sierra Leone.”  Co-authored with Thespina Yamanis and Elisabeth Nolan. PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. 10(10). October 18, 2016.
  • “Effects in post-conflict West Africa of teacher training for refugee women.” Co-authored with Sharyn Routh.  Gender and Education. 24(4): 429-441.  July 2012.
  • “Introduction to Special Issue:  Everyday Life in Post-war Sierra Leone.”  Co-authored with Aisha Fofana Ibrahim.  Africa Today.  58(2): v-xii.  December 2011.
  • “The Real and Symbolic Importance of Food in War: Hunger Pains and Big Men’s Bellies in Sierra Leone.” Africa Today. 58(2): 43-56.  December 2011.
  • "Child labour and youth enterprise: Post-war urban infrastructure and the bearing boys of Freetown." Anthropology Today. 26(6): 19-22. December 2010.   
  • "Youth Music and Politics in Postwar Sierra Leone." The Journal of Modern African Studies. 48(4). 627-642. 2010.   
  • "Transnational Fosterage: The Novel Care Arrangements between Guinean Caregivers and Ivorian and Liberian Children Fleeing War" in Everyday Ruptures: Children, Youth, and Migration in Global Perspective. Cati Coe and Rachel Reynolds, Eds. Vanderbilt University Press. 2011.   
  • "Post-war trajectories for girls associated with the fighting forces in Sierra Leone." in  Gender, War, and Militarism. Laura Sjoberg and Sandra Via, Eds. Praeger Security International Series: Santa Barbara. 2010.   
  • "Shifting priorities in child protection in Sierra Leone since Lome" in Sierra Leone Beyond Lome: Challenges and Possibilities for a Post-War Nation, Marda Mustapha and Joseph Bangura, Eds. Palgrave. 2010.   
  • "Are child soldiers in Sierra Leone a new phenomenon?" in The Powerful Presence of the Past: Historical Dimensions of Integration and Conflict in the Upper Guinea Coast , sponsored by the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle Germany. Jacqueline Knorr and Wilson Trajano Filho, Eds. Brill Publishers. 2010.  
  • "Documenting Human Rights Abuses among the Diaspora: Lessons Learned from the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission" (co-authored with Patricia Minikon.) In Human Rights after the Cold War: Assessing Challenges and Opportunities. Noha Shawki and Michaelene Cox, editors. Ashgate Publishers.; 2009.   
  • "The Rites of the Child: Global Discourses of Youth and Reintegrating Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone" Journal of Human Rights, June 2005.  
  • "Globalizing Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone," in Youthscapes: The Popular, The National, The Global, December 2004.   
  • "Educated in War: The Rehabilitation of Child Soldiers in Sierra Leone" in Conflict Resolution and Peace Education in Africa, August 2003.   
  • "Les Filles-Soldats: Trajectoires d'apres-guerre en Sierra Leone" Politique Africaine, December 2002.   
  • "Education as a Site of Political Struggle in Sierra Leone" Antropologicas, 1998.

Honors, Awards, and Fellowships

  • Visiting Professor at Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto.  Fall 2016.
  • George Arnhold Professor at the Georg Eckert Institute for International Textbook Research, Braunschweig, Germany.  2014-2015
  • Fulbright Scholar in Nigeria, 2013-2014
  • Spencer Foundation Research Grant, “Education, State Fragility, and Armed Conflict in West Africa” 2013-2014
  • Winner (with Sharyn Routh) of INEE's Jackie Kirk Commemorative Competition 2009.   
  • Outstanding Dissertation in Comparative Education – Gail P. Kelly Award from the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES). 2006.   
  • Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation dissertation year fellowship. 2004.   
  • Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation dissertation fellowship. 2003, 2004.   
  • American Association of University Women, American Dissertation Fellowship. 2003.