Meet the Team

The CRP brought together leading academics from around the world.

the CRP will address the drivers of violent conflict in the Middle East and Africa

Advisory Board

The CRP Advisory Board consisted of experts in the international development sector. Our members were both internal LSE academics, as well as external professionals. The Board met annually to provide feedback on our research and provide guidance.

Advisory Board Members


Omar Abdulaziz Hallaj

Omar Abdulaziz Hallaj is a consultant on urban planning, development and local governance. He is co-coordinator of the Syria Project at the Common Space Initiative in Beirut, where he is engaged in facilitating various dialogue and research projects for peace building and recovery planning in Syria. Formerly, he was the CEO of the Syria Trust for Development, and served on the boards of several NGO’s, and public commissions. His professional and research work relates institutional, financial and political frameworks to the production of built environment. In 2007, Mr. Hallaj was the recipient of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture as team leader of the Shibam Urban Development Project (GIZ). He subsequently served on the master jury and the steering committee of the Award.


Christine Bell

Professor Christine Bell is a legal expert based in Edinburgh, Scotland.  She is Professor of Constitutional Law and Assistant Principal (Global Justice) at the University of Edinburgh, Co-director of the Global Justice Academy, and a member of the British Academy. 


Tilman Brüek

Professor Tilman Brück is Founder and Director of ISDC - International Security and Development Center in Berlin and Head of the Research Group “Economic Development and Food Security” at the Leibniz Institute of Vegetable and Ornamental Crops near Berlin. He is also a Visiting Professor at the London School of Economics and Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Households in Conflict Network. His research focuses on the behaviour and the welfare of poor and vulnerable households in conflict-affected, fragile or humanitarian emergency settings and on research methods in conflict settings. Tilman Brück obtained a doctorate in economics from the University of Oxford.


Christine Chinkin

Professor Christine Chinkin CMG FBA is Professorial Research Fellow in the Centre for Women, Peace and Security. Professor Chinkin is a leading expert on international law and human rights law, especially the international human rights of women and has been a consultant or advisor to UN bodies on a range of issues including human trafficking gender-based persecution in armed conflict, peace agreements and gender and violence against women. She is also a leading expert on the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). 


Christopher Coker

Christopher Coker is Director of LSE IDEAS, LSE's foreign policy think tank. He was Professor of International Relations at LSE, retiring in 2019. He is a former twice serving member of the Council of the Royal United Services Institute, a former NATO Fellow and a regular lecturer at Defence Colleges in the UK, US, Rome, Singapore, and Tokyo. He has been a Visiting Fellow at the National Institute for Defence Studies In Tokyo, the Rajaratnam School for International Studies Singapore, the Political Science Dept in Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok and the Norwegian and Swedish Defence Colleges. 


Pamela DeLargy

Pamela DeLargy is a public health and population specialist with a twenty year career in international development and humanitarian response where she worked in the areas of population and development, migration, gender and development, including reproductive health.


David Deng

David Deng is a South Sudanese/American human rights lawyer who spent much of the last decade engaged in research and advocacy in South Sudan. Deng’s research has touched on a broad array of issues, including the challenges and opportunities of large-scale land investment, customary law and local dispute resolution mechanisms, citizen views on peace processes, and people’s experiences with and perceptions of transitional justice.

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Staffan de Mistura

Staffan de Mistura served as Special Envoy for Syria of the United Nations Secretary-General from July 2014 to December 2018. Prior to this assignment he was the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Iraq (2007-2009) and in Afghanistan (2010-2011), and Italy's Deputy Foreign Minister. 

During a career of over four decades with United Nations agencies, he served in numerous conflict zones, directing complex relief operations, food distributions and vaccination campaigns. In particular, he was posted in Sudan, Ethiopia, Albania, Afghanistan, Iraq, Bosnia and Somalia. He also held senior political and humanitarian assignments in Lebanon and Iraq, and served as Deputy Executive Director of the World Food Programme. Mr. de Mistura is a national of Italy and Sweden. He speaks seven languages.


Stefan Dercon

Stefan Dercon is Professor of Economic Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government and the Economics Department at the University of Oxford. He is also Director of the Centre for the Study of African Economies.

His research interests concern what keeps some people and countries poor: the failures of markets, governments and politics, mainly in Africa, and how to achieve change and better economic and political governance.

Currently, he is also the Academic Director of the Pathways to Prosperity Commission, which is investigating the changing role of technology in inclusive development

Between 2011 and 2017, he was Chief Economist of the Department of International Development (DFID), the government department in charge with the UK’s aid policy and spending. In this position, he provided strategic advice, and was responsible for ensuring the use of evidence in decision making. 


Duncan Green

Dr Duncan Green is Senior Strategic Adviser at Oxfam GB and Professor in Practice in International Development at the London School of Economics. He is author of How Change Happens (OUP, October 2016) and From Poverty to Power: How Active Citizens and Effective States can Change the World (Oxfam International, 2008, second edition 2012) as well as several books on Latin America. He also authors a daily Oxfam Blog


Simon Hix

Simon is the Pro-Director for Research and the Harold Laski Professor of Political Science at the LSE. Simon is one of the leading researchers, teachers, and commentators on European and comparative politics in the UK.  He has published over 100 books and articles and has won several prestigious prizes and fellowships for his research, including from the US-UK Fulbright Commission, the American Political Science Association, and the UK Economic and Social Research Council.  He regularly gives evidence to committees in the House of Commons and House of Lords, as well as in the European Parliament, and has advised governments in Europe, Africa, Asia, and Latin America on the design of electoral systems and parliaments.  He has held visiting professor positions at Stanford, Berkeley, UC San Diego, Sciences Po in Paris, the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, and the Korean Institute for International Economic Policy in Seoul.

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Barham Salih

Barham is the President of the Republic of Iraq.

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Andy Salmon CMG OBE

Andy is the founder of Journey Through Conflict, which fuses stories with art, music and culture, producing immersive experiences that inspire journeys to a better life. 

He also helps senior leaders and teams co-create their journey to success.  Recently he launched The General and The Maestro with Tom Donald, award-winning film composer and jazz/classical fusion concert-pianist - helping organisations and teams increase innovation and creativity through improvisation.

Before that, he spent 36 years in the Royal Marines and was a former Commandant General, Head of Service. His commando service includes several tours of Northern Ireland, the Falklands War (1982), Northern Iraq (1991), Angola (1992), Sierra Leone (twice in 2000), Baghdad (2003) and, latterly, as the last British Commanding General of coalition forces in Basra, (2008/9).  He built NATO’s new Comprehensive Crisis Operations Management Centre in 2011/12.

He is a senior visiting fellow at the London School of Economics and fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.


Clare Short

Clare Short was Labour MP for Birmingham Ladyhood from 1997 - 2010.  She was Secretary of State for International Development 1997-2003 and set up and established the Department for International Development.


Javier Solana

Javier Solana is president of ESADE Center for Global Economy and Geopolitics (Barcelona-Madrid). He is distinguished fellow in Foreign Policy at Brookings Institution, senior fellow at the Hertie School of Governance (Berlin), chairman of the Aspen Institute Spain, honorary president of the Centre for Human Dialogue (Geneva), and advisor to the Institute of Modern International Relations of Tsinghua University. He is also member of the board of the International Crisis Group and the European Council on Foreign Relations, as well as visiting professor at the London School of Economics, where he was awarded an Honorary Degree in December 2010.

From 1999 to 2009, Dr. Solana was Secretary General of the Council of the European Union (EU); and from 1995 to 1999, Secretary General of NATO. Dr. Solana is the former High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) of the European Union. Prior to this, he has held several ministerial positions in the Spanish government, including Minister for Foreign Affairs.


Paul Thornberry

Paul Thornbury is the Head of Security at the LSE, a Senior Research Associate in the LSE IDEAS International Drug Policy Unit and a final year PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology. Paul’s PhD, ‘Soldiering and security: boundaries and identity in UK military private security’, examines the developing ethical boundaries employed by private security practitioners in conflict environments.

Paul’s research interests include the sociology of state and non-state violence and control. Most recently he has conducted research with Dr Mike Shiner on behalf of the Open Society Foundation into institutional responses to reform in UK domestic policing.

Paul is a former military officer with a background in intelligence and stability support operations. Prior to coming to the LSE Paul had worked in a number of positions in the NGO and corporate security and risk management fields. He speaks Russian and the languages that used to be Serbo-Croat.

Management Team

The core CRP Management Team was based centrally at LSE and managed both the research and operational agenda of the programme.

Management Team

Professor Mary Kaldor

Prof Mary Kaldor

Executive Director of the Conflict Research Programme.


Vesna, Fellow, International Development, LSE

Vesna Bojicic-Dzelilovic

Deputy Director on the CRP and managed the CRP Fellowships programme.

Visit the CRP Fellowships page.


Prof Alex de Waal

Co-Director for Research on the Conflict Research Programme. Alex is the Executive Director of the World Peace Foundation at The Fletcher School, Tufts University.


Matthew Benson

Research Manager on the Conflict Research Programme.

Alice Bryant

Alice Bryant

Programme Manager for the Conflict Research Programme.


Research Directorate 

Our five sites were managed, or co-managed by a Research Director who oversaw the work of the research teams, local partners, fellows and small grants projects. Together with the CRP Management Team, they formed the CRP Research Directorate.

Research Directors


Prof Alex de Waal

Alex oversaw the research agenda for both the CRP South Sudan and Somalia programmes.


Prof Koen Vlassenroot

Koen managed the Conflict Research Group at Ghent Univerity. Koen led the CRP research in eastern DRC.

Visit our DRC country page.


Toby Dodge

Toby is the Director of the Kuwait Programme in the LSE Middle East Centre. Toby managed the CRP research in Iraq and our work in the wider MENA region.

Visit the Iraq/MENA country page.


Nisar Majid

Nisar managed the CRP research in Somalia alongside Alex de Waal.

Visit our Somalia country page.

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Dr. Rim Turkmani

Rim managed the CRP research in Syria.

Visit our Syria country page.

Consortium Team Members

The CRP was delivered through an international consortium comprised of internal LSE Units and Centres, as well as international research institutions. 


The core team at LSE IDEAS comprised:

Executive Director: Prof Mary Kaldor

Research Manager: Matthew Benson

Programme Manager: Amy Crinnion

Research Fellows: Dr Rim Turkmani (Syria) and Dr. Henry Radice

Research Officers: Dr Nisar Majid (Somalia), Alice Robinson (South Sudan) and Zaki Mehchy (Syria)

Research Coordinator: Hannah Logan (South Sudan)

Research Associate: Mazen Gharibah (Syria)

Policy Fellow: Marika Theros

LSE Middle East Centre

The CRP Iraq research, as well as the research in the wider Middle East region was carried out by the LSE Middle East Centre and their partners.

Research Director: Prof Toby Dodge

Research Fellow: Dr Jessica Watkins

CRP-Iraq & MENA Project Manager: Sandra Sfeir

IRIS (AUIS) project lead: Mac Skelton 

Al-Bayan Center for Planning and Studies project lead: Ali Al-Mawlawi.

World Peace Foundation, Tufts University

Executive Director of the World Peace Foundation and CRP Programme Research Director: Prof Alex de Waal

Researcher in Somalia and Horn of Africa: Prof Dan Maxwell 

Research Fellow on the Horn of Africa: Mulugeta Gebrehiwot Behre 

Research Coordinator (Political Marketplace): Aditya Sarkar

Research Assistant (Political Marketplace): Ben Spatz

Research Assistant (Political Marketplace): Nanaho Yamanaka

Conflict Research Group, University of Ghent

Research Director - Eastern DRCongo: Professor Koen Vlassenroot 

Postdoctoral Researcher: Kasper Hoffmann


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Conflict Research Programme, LSE IDEAS, Floor 9, Pankhurst House, Clement's Inn, London, WC2A 2AZ

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