Centers, Institutes & Initiatives

Our research centers and institutes provide an institutional framework for scholars working in regional and topical fields of study, while our cutting-edge initiatives connect cross-curricular faculty and research to address critical global issues. Together, they contribute to the Elliott School’s mission of producing scholarship that advances understanding of important global issues, in order to engage the public and the policy community both domestic and abroad in fostering international dialogue and shaping policy solutions.

Visiting Scholars & Non-Resident Scholars

The Elliott School is home to eminent visiting and non-resident scholars conducting research relevant to our interests. If you would like to become a visiting or non-resident scholar, we encourage you to apply to our individual centers, institutes and initiatives listed above. 

We are pleased to announce the virtual arrival of many scholars at the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year, as we work to build an online environment conducive to sharing ideas and building networks within the DC community. 

Visiting Scholars starting in August 

Sina Azodi is a Ph.D. candidate in Politics and International Affairs at the University of South Florida. At the Institute for Middle East Studies, he will be studying the strategic logic behind Iran’s nuclear technology as a member state of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty, as well as its implications for U.S.-Iran relations and U.S. national security. He holds an MA in International Relations from George Washington University.

Seonghwi Kim is a Staff Reporter in the Political News Department of the MoneyToday media group headquartered in Seoul. At the Institute for Korean Studies, he will be studying how news reports in South Korea and the U.S. about the two Presidents affect perceptions about the South Korea–United States alliance, in the context of defense cost-sharing and their Free Trade Agreement. He holds an MA in Political Science from the Graduate School of International and Area Studies of Hankuk University of Foreign Studies. 

Zhaslan Nurbaev is an Associate Professor at the Department of Regional Studies of Eurasian National University in Astana. At the Institute for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies (IERES), he will be studying inequalities in secondary education between youth in rural and urban Kazakhstan, with the goal of providing policy recommendations, especially in regards to digital literacy. He holds a degree in History from Kostanay State University, Kazakhstan.

Anastassia Reshetnyak is a National Consultant for the website on preventing violent extremism of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, a Senior Research Fellow at the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies Under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and an Editor of Central Asia’s Affairs Scientific Journal. At the Central Asia Program, she will be studying how to promote resistance to violent extremism among youth who suffer from identity crises and socio-economic problems. She holds an MS in Social Science in Area Studies from Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, Kazakhstan.

Dania Thafer Al-Awadi is a PhD candidate in Comparative Politics and International Relations at the American University, the President and Founder of the Gulf International Forum, as well as a Visiting Scholar at Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies. At the Institute for Middle East Studies, she will be studying the economic reform and innovation needed for rentier economies to incorporate a large labor force just coming of age. She holds an MA in Political Economy from New York University.

Non-Resident Scholars starting in August

Nicholas Anderson is a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, and a PhD candidate in Political Science at Yale University. He will also be serving as a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at the Institute for Security and Conflict Studies (ISCS), where he will be studying the reasons why states seek territorial expansion, as well as why territorial expansion manifested in so many different ways. He holds an MA in Security Studies from Georgetown University.  

Neha Ansari is a PhD candidate in International Relations at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at ISCS, she will be studying how public opinion of the American drone program in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas evolved from fear to confidence due to a change in the program’s administration. She also holds an MA in Law and Diplomacy from Tufts University and another MA in International Relations from the University of Karachi. 

Min-Jung Kim is a PhD candidate in International Relations at the American University. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at ISCS, she will be studying how local elites in the borderlands of India and Myanmar managed their relationships with the national governments of their countries. She holds an M.Phil. in International Relations from American University, as well as an MA in Conflict Resolution from Georgetown University. 

Paul Orner is a PhD candidate in International Relations and a U.S.-Asia Grand Strategy Predoctoral Fellow at the University of Southern California. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at ISCS, he will be studying how China responds to the perceived strengths of international alliances to secure its position in the Indo-Pacific region. He holds a BA in International Relations and Asian Studies from Saint Joseph’s University. 

DongJoon Park is a PhD candidate in International Relations and Security Studies at Georgetown University. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at ISCS, he will be studying how states decide whether to defend or concede their reputation for resolve, with North Korea and South Korea serving as his case studies. He holds an MA in Political Science and International Relations from Korea University. 

Rachel Tecott is a PhD candidate in Political Science at MIT, with a specialization in Security Studies and International Relations. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at ISCS, she will be studying the causes and consequences of U.S. influence strategies in military assistance, including the training of foreign militaries and attempts to build agreements between groups. She holds a BA from Wesleyan University in Government and International Relations.

Danielle Villa is a PhD candidate in Political Science at Emory University. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at ISCS, she will be studying the political dynamics of peacekeeping operations, including those between the UN, the host government, and non-state actors. Based on collected data of operations in African countries, she makes the case that peacekeeping operations often lack neutrality. She holds an MA in Political Science from Emory.

Chen Wang is a PhD candidate in Political Science at the University of Virginia with a concentration in International Relations and Political Methodology. As a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at ISCS, he will be studying how new leaders’ foreign policy preferences shift in relation to those of the previous administration and crises initiated by challengers. He holds an MS in Economics from Johns Hopkins University and an MA in International Economics from the University of International Relations in Beijing. 

Hung-Jen Wang is an Associate Professor at the Political Science Department of National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan. At the East Asia National Resource Center, he will be studying the dynamics of Sino-US relations since 2008, identifying implications for Taiwan’s relationship with both China and the U.S, as well as the values and norms that each country tends to emphasize in its foreign policy decisions. He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Tübingen, Germany.