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S-CAR Activity Recap – July/August 2019

September 18, 2019

S-CAR's monthly Activity Recaps highlight the ongoing contributions being made by S-CAR students, faculty, and alumni to the field of conflict analysis and resolution. Each Activity Recap includes publications, presentations, and awards from the previous month.

Are you a member of the S-CAR community? Send your publication, presentation, and award updates to so that we can include them in our Activity Recaps.


The latter half of Summer 2019 saw a number of achievements, publications, and events within the S-CAR community. Laura Collins received a Peace Scholar Dissertation Fellowship from the United States Institute of Peace, while Agnieszka Paczynska was awarded a guest researcher position at the German Development Institute. Terrence Lyons’s book on Ethiopian politics was published, and a new book from Sara Cobb, Sarah Federman, and Alison Castel looks at the discourses of conflict resolution. Members of the S-CAR community also published four book chapters in two additional books. Six journal articles were published, and Douglas Irvin-Erickson and Laura Collins edited volume 13.2 of Genocide Studies and Prevention. Twenty-three members of the S-CAR community either authored or were featured in numerous newspaper articles, media interviews, and podcasts. Six members of the S-CAR community organized or spoke at events throughout July and August, and S-CAR hosted seven events in Fairfax, Arlington, and online during the last half of the summer.

Five S-CAR doctoral candidates defended their dissertations in July and August. In total, nine doctoral candidates defended their dissertations between May and August 2019. Congratulations to Drs. Elizabeth Degi DuBois, Fakhira Halloun, Margarita Tadevosyan, Sarah Rose-Jensen, Melissa Sinclair, Soolmaz Abooali, Lori-Ann Stephensen, Derek Sweetman, and Samantha Borders-Shoemaker, and congratulations to PhD candidate Joel Amegboh for defending his dissertation proposal in May!

Awards and Accolades

Laura Collins (PhD candidate) was awarded a Peace Scholar Dissertation Fellowship by the United States Institute of Peace on August 6, 2019.

Agnieszka Paczynska was awarded a guest researcher position at the German Development Institute in the Transformation of Political (Dis)Order Program, in Bonn, Germany.

Academic Publications

Books and Book Chapters

Sara Cobb, Sarah Federman (PhD ’15), and Alison Castel (PhD ’16) wrote the book Introduction to Conflict Resolution: Discourses and Dynamics, published in July 2019.

Yuji Uesugi (MS ‘96) wrote the introduction and first chapter for, as well as edited, the book Hybrid Peacebuilding in Asia, published on August 13, 2019.

Megumi Kagawa (MS ‘06) wrote chapter four of the book Hybrid Peacebuilding in Asia, titled “Roles of Rebel Gatekeepers in Mid-Space Peacebuilding: A Case Study of Bangsamoro,” published on August 13, 2019.

Terrance Lyons wrote the book The Puzzle of Ethiopian Politics, published on August 15, 2019.

Journal Articles, Papers, and Reports

Terrence Lyons, “Transnational Advocacy: Genocide or Terrorism?Genocide Studies and Prevention, published July 19, 2019.

Laura Collins and Douglas Irvin-Erickson edited “Rethinking Genocide, Mass Atrocities, and Political Violence in Africa: New Directions, New Inquiries, and Global Perspectives,” which was volume 13.2 of Genocide Studies and Prevention, published in 2019.

Laura Collins (PhD candidate), “Rethinking Genocide, Mass Atrocities, and Political Violence in AfricaGenocide Studies and Prevention, 13(2), 2–13, published in 2019.

Abantee Dutta (MS student), “Expressions of resistance: Women surviving the Holocaust.” Nilima: A Journal of Law and Policy2(2), 62–92, published July 2019.

Audrey Williams (MS student) and Kuntala Roychoudhury, “A ‘struggle for survival’: The clash between elephants and human settlements in the wildlife reserves of Assam.” Nilima: A Journal of Law and Policy, 2(2), 1–10, published July 2019.

Susan F. Hirsch, “Review of Searching for Truth in the Transitional Justice Movement and Transitional Justice and the Prosecution of Leaders in the Arab Region: A Comparative Study of Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, and Yemen.” Law and Society Review, 3(3), 925–929, published in 2019.

Talha Kose (PhD ‘10), “Diplomacy and Asymmetric Relations in the S-400 Crisis.” Kriter, 4(37), published July 2019.

S-CAR in the News

Kevin Avruch was featured in an article titled “Dean Kevin Avruch: A brief appreciation” written by Richard Rubenstein and published by S-CAR News on July 15, 2019.

Tamara Smiley Hamilton (MS student) was featured in an article titled “Peace Coach” published by The Rotarian magazine in July 2019. She was also a guest on a Toastmaster’s Podcast episode titled “Meet the 2018 Accredited Speakers: Part 2,” posted on August 23, 2019. In addition, she was interviewed by Dr. Thao Do for CourageTV in an episode posted on August 23, 2019.

Mohammed Cherkaoui appeared in various media publications, including France 24, where he discussed Tehran’s decision to exceed international limits on the enrichment of uranium on July 3, 2019, as well as “The G7 Summit” on August 26, 2019; Arab 21, where he wrote an article titled “When will Maghreb countries become part of the post-Francophone phase?” published July 10, 2019; Al Jazeera Center for Studies, where he was featured in an article titled “AJCS Fellow Participates at the Euro-Arab Dialogue Workshop at College of Europe,” published in July 2019, and in an article titled “AJCS Fellow Debates the Gulf Crises at the French Senate in Paris,” published on July 13, 2019; Arab Television, where he discussed “Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's rejection of President Trump's invitation to sit at the negotiating table” on August 29, 2019; and Alaraby, where he wrote an article titled “Benkirane’s speech: References, purposes and records of ‘Justice and Development’,” published on August 14, 2019.

Gregory Stanton was referenced in an article titled “How close are Indian Muslims to a Genocide?” written by The Milli Gazette and published on July 12, 2019. 

Terrence Lyons co-wrote an article with Hilary Matfess titled “What’s behind Ethiopia’s recent political violence?” for The Washington Post, published July 15, 2019. This article was also picked up by Dehai News on July 16, 2019.

Marc Gopin appeared on Alaraby TV discussing the reactions to the increase in refinement activity by Iran beyond the levels agreed to in the accords Donald Trump canceled, posted July 8, 2019. He also spoke on “The War in Syria and Downing of the Regime Jet” on TRT World Now on August 15, 2019.

Sarah Heirendt (MS ‘13) was featured in an article by Sam Kragen titled “Israeli, Palestinian and American teens build trust on the ropes” for The San Diego Union-Tribune, published July 16, 2019. This article was also picked up by Atlantic Broadband on July 18, 2019.

Roi Ben-Yehuda (PhD candidate) wrote an article titled “3 ways to deal with conflict more productively” for Fast Company, published July 13, 2019.

Oakley Hill (MS student) and Audrey Williams (MS student) wrote an article titled “‘Throw us into the fire’: S-CAR master’s students facilitate dialogue on #MeToo” for S-CAR News, published on July 15, 2019.

Dhirendra Nalbo (PhD ‘19) wrote an article titled “Thank you for your contribution!” for The Record, published July 21, 2019.

Oakley Hill (MS student) wrote an article titled “It’s In Our Hands Now: Localizing Resistance to Fight Climate Change” for the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict’s Minds of the Movement Blog, published July 23, 2019.

Sarah Parshall (BA ‘13, MA ‘15) was profiled in an article by Mariam Aburdeineh titled “Making the grade: Mason alumnus helps students avoid suspension and excel” for News at Mason, published July 24, 2019. Arthur Romano was also quoted in the piece.

Emily Linnemeier (PhD student) was featured in an article titled “Western Justice Center Empowers Educators to Diffuse Conflict and Disarm Bias” for Pasadena Now, published July 24, 2019.

Sarah Federman (PhD ‘15) wrote an article titled “The Keeper of the Violin,” published by The Smithsonian Center for Folklife & Cultural Heritage on May 1, 2019.

Richard Rubenstein wrote two articles, one titled “’That Was Then, This Is Now.’ ‘Oh, yeah?’ The Problem of Anti-Relativism in Political Morality” for Transcend, published on August 12, 2019; and the other titled “Resolving the Democrats’ Dilemma” for Counterpunch, published on August 9, 2019. 

Sandra Tombe (PhD candidate) wrote an article titled “Building peace in South Sudan -- in Lexington” for The Roanoke Times, published August 29, 2019.

Solon Simmons, Sara Cobb, and Gbenga Dasylva (PhD student) were featured in an article titled “Students discover African-led development in Mason’s first trip to Eritrea,” written by Mariam Aburdeineh for The George, published on August 26, 2019.

Ibrahim Fraihat (PhD ‘06) appeared on Al Jazeera to discuss “‘The enemy of my enemy is my friend’… Will the Taliban file defuse tension between Washington and Tehran?” on August 16, 2019.

Talha Kose (PhD ‘10) appeared in various media publications, including Daily Sabah, where he published three articles, one titled “The Kashmir crisis and the decline of pluralism in Asia” on August 8, 2019; the second titled “Dark side of the Grozny model in northeastern Syria” on July 26, 2019; and the third titled “S-400s shape the direction of Turkey-US talks” on July 12, 2019. He also wrote two articles for Sabah, one titled “Increased Hindu nationalism exacerbates the Kashmir problem” on August 10, 2019; and another titled “F-35 and breaking the security doctrine in Turkey” on July 20, 2019,

Roj Eli Zalla (PhD candidate) appeared on Rudaw discussing “United States aerospace and aerospace systems” on July 31, 2019.

Jalen Sherald (BA ‘15) wrote an article titled “The Buzz: #InclusionWins Deaf Couple Opens Pizzeria” for The Inclusion Solution, published August 1, 2019. 

Dissertation Defenses

Melissa Sinclair – “From Our Abundance: The Rhetorical Origins of U.S. Foreign Assistance as Evidenced in the Debates of Congress, 1789-1949.” July 8, 2019 

Soolmaz Abooali – “Sport for Change: A Theory and Practice Exploration.” July 24, 2019.

Lori-Ann Stephensen – “In Front of the Face: An Appeal for a Relational Approach to Ethics for Conflict Resolution Practice.” July 29, 2019.

Derek Sweetman – “‘Let Us Boldly Explode It’: The Repetitions Of American Peacework.” August 22, 2019.

Samantha Borders-Shoemaker – “Let's Talk: Interpersonal Dialogue in a Moment of Political Hostility.” August 30, 2019. 

S-CAR Events, Presentations, and Public Lectures

Public Lectures and Events

Agnieszka Paczynska presented “Emerging Donors and Conflict-Affected States: the New Politics of Peacebuilding” at the German Development Institute in Bonn, Germany, on August 13, 2019.

Richard Rubenstein presented “Politics and the Novel: Graham Greene’s The Quiet American” at the Fairfax Osher Lifelong Learning Center in July 2019.

Coren Jonathan Allen (MS ‘18) presented “The Kambibi Academy” at the College of International Security Affairs on August 14, 2019. He also presented “What if it Just Started Raining” at the Busboys and Poets event “Children’s Books 4 Peace” on August 21, 2019.

Karina Korostelina gave a speech titled “Japanese Perspective on Korean Reunification” at the East-West Center on July 23, 2019.

Borislava Manojlovic (PhD ‘13) presented on “Environmental Challenges and Consensus Building Diplomacy” for the United Nations on August 7, 2019.

Suzanne de Janasz ran a workshop titled “Capitalizing on Everyday Negotiations” for 70 women on the evening of August 21; five of the attendees were graduates of the inaugural “Engaging and Succeeding in Negotiations” executive program she ran in April/May on the Arlington Campus.

S-CAR Events

From July 15 through July 18, S-CAR hosted its annual Conflict Resolution Youth Summit on the Fairfax Campus. The Conflict Resolution Youth Summit is a one-week summer day program for rising 10th, 11th, and 12th grade students, during which students explore some of today’s toughest problems through the lens of conflict analysis and resolution. The program touched on topics such as social and political action, global engagement, justice and reconciliation, collaborative leadership, interpersonal dynamics, and building peace in divided societies. Participants learned through simulation labs, field trips, workshops, and by engaging with experts in the field.

On July 17, Herman Wainggai (Visiting Scholar) spoke during an event on “Democracy and Religious Freedom: Tolerance in West Papua” that was held at S-CAR on the Arlington Campus. The event, organized by the West Papua Human Rights Center, explored the story of West Papua’s struggle for the restoration of basic human rights, religious freedom without the fear of intimidation, and an end to the abuses of the West Papuans. The discussion was a side event of the U.S. State Department’s second International Religious Freedom Ministerial, which was held in Washington, D.C. from July 16 to July 18. 

On August 22, S-CAR welcomed its new graduate student cohort at a graduate student orientation in Van Metre Hall on the Arlington Campus. An online student orientation was held on August 21 for those online master’s program students who were unable to attend the in-person orientation.