My research is primarily centered around the fields of peacebuilding, peacekeeping, state-building, and reconstruction. More specifically, I am interested in the short-term and long-term impacts that international interventions have on societies undergoing post-conflict and post-communist transitions. While my interests are global, I am primarily interested in the events which have unfolded over the past 30 years in Eastern Europe and the Western Balkans, in particular.
International enforcement of peace agreements—in their entirety—is a cruciial determinant of conflict termination and the duration of post-conflict peace. In my dissertation project, “Blueprints for Peace: International Missions, Domestic Commitments, and Post-Conflict Reforms,” I seek to understand why United Nations and regional peacekeeping missions vary significantly in the individual peace agreement provisions that they enforce and the effect that this variation has on different measurements of positive and negative peace. This project necessarily adopts a multi-level, mixed-methods approach, combining longitudinal analyses of an original dataset of all post-Cold War UN and regional peacekeeping missions with long-form interviews; archival research; and original elite and public surveys in post-communist, post-conflict Kosovo.
Beyond my dissertation, I am more broadly interested in questions related to social and political transitions. To that end I am involved in a series of secondary projects as well. My first project studies the causes and effects of the vertical and horizontal diffusion of international peacebuilding initiatives in the post-Cold War era and relies on quantitative text analyses of various formal and informal peacebuilding documents to study the mechanisms that undergird these relationship across time and space. The second project examines how the legacies of multiple, compounded forms of repression and widescale violence interact to and effect individuals’ levels of social and political trust. My third project focuses on understanding the ways in which transitional justice—the processes through which societies address their legacies of human rights abuses—may serve alternative purposes beyond justice and democratic consolidation as tools of statebuilding and state security; to do so, I rely on interviews and primary and secondary sources on the transitional justice mechanisms adopted in the post-communist Baltic states.