I am Professor of International Security at the University of Birmingham, England, UK. A political scientist by background, I specialise in the management of contemporary security challenges, especially in the prevention and settlement of ethnic conflicts and in post-conflict state-building in deeply divided and war-torn societies. I have extensive expertise in the former Soviet Union and the Middle East, and have also worked on a wide range of other conflicts elsewhere, including in Africa and in Central, South and Southeast Asia. Bridging the divide between academia and policy-making, I have been involved in various phases of conflict settlement processes, including in the disputed territories in Iraq, in Transnistria and Gagauzia (Moldova), and in Yemen.

Recent Publications



Building peace through subnational governance: The case of Libya

Amidst the pandemic and an unprecedented economic downturn, millions of people continue to face the compounding effects of violent conflict. Disputes over control of territory and resources play an oversized role in many of these conflicts — as evident, for example, in Ethiopia, Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Myanmar.

Yemen: Engaging, Not Isolating

Five years of war in Yemen have caused one of today’s worst man-made humanitarian crises. To resolve the conflict the Biden administration will have to grasp the nettle of subnational governance reform and be prepared to work with – not against – the Houthis in finding a sustainable political settlement.