George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

S-CAR Activity Recap – December 2019 and January 2020

February 17, 2020

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.


Our faculty, staff, students, and alumni finished out the last semester and entered 2020 with a slew of publications, accolades, and events. At the end of 2019, students defended dissertation proposals, while S-CAR also hosted colleagues from Rondine Citadella della Pace for an event discussing the Rondine Method. We also got the chance to see the incredible work being done by our undergraduate students at the Fall Research Symposium. To welcome in 2020, members of the S-CAR community published a series of news articles and were featured in interviews and television appearances. As the Spring 2020 semester began, students, faculty, and staff have started the new year with innovative courses, exciting field experience opportunities, and new research endeavors to come.

Awards and Accolades

Susan Allen received an award of $88,739 from UNDP on December 13, 2019, for Georgian-South Ossetian Research and Analysis on Confidence Building.

Karina Korostelina received the Isaac Manasseh Meyer Fellowship (IMMF) at the National University of Singapore.

Margarita Tadevosyan (PhD ‘19) received a grant from The Robert Bosch Stiftung (RBSG) and the Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation for the German Marshall Fund (BTS) to implement a reconciliation project in the South Caucasus called “The Value of Dialogue: Human Stories and Perspectives.” 

Academic Publications

Books and Book Chapters

Karina Korostelina published a chapter titled “Understanding Values of Cultural Heritage within the Framework of Social Identity Conflicts” in the book Values in Heritage Management: Emerging Approaches and Research Directions (pp. 82–95), edited by Erica Avrami, Susan Macdonald, Randall Mason, and David Myers. Los Angeles, CA: The Getty Conservation.

Journal Articles, Papers, and Reports

Mohammed Cherkaoui (MS ’07, PhD ’12). Seven Ironies of Reconstructing a New Security Paradigm in the Gulf. Al Jazeera Centre for Studies. January 30, 2020.

Oded Adomi Leshem (PhD ’18) and Eran Halperin. Hoping for Peace during Protracted Conflict: Citizens’ Hope Is Based on Inaccurate Appraisals of Their Adversary’s Hope for Peace. Journal of Conflict Resolution. January 13, 2020.

Ernest Ogbozor (PhD ‘18). From counter-terrorism to livelihood destruction: factors causing systemic and continuing destruction of livelihoods in the Lake Chad Basin. African Union Journal of Terrorism, 8(1), pp. 37–53. December 2019.

Patricia Maulden. Former Incarcerated Persons and Disenfranchisement: Civil Death in the United States. In Niilma: A Journal of Law and Policy, 3(1), pp. 75–90. January 2020. 

S-CAR in the News


Yerevan Saeed (PhD Candidate) published two articles in Al Jazeera, one titled “The KRG’s anti-corruption effort must start from its oil sector” on December 2, 2019, and “Why the unity of the PUK is important for Iraqi Kurds” on December 19, 2019.

Talha Kose (PhD ’10) published an article in the Daily Sabah titled “Trump wants to renegotiate with Iran, not engage in a war” on January 9, 2020.  

Charles Chavis, Jr. was featured in an article titled “Facing a painful part of the past,” published in The Howard County Beacon on January 27, 2020.

Mohammed Cherkaoui (MS ’07, PhD ’12) discussed the emergence and politics of Saudi Aramco in an article published in Alaraby on December 13, 2019. In an article published by Alyaoum24 on January 25, 2020, he was cited on his thoughts about those working in the shadows of Moroccan politics. On January 14, 2020, he was cited in an article from Deutsche Welle Arabic on the emergence of peacemakers in Libya. Cherkaoui also authored an article in Diwane on January 5, 2020, discussing his thoughts on comparing Trump’s foreign policy to those of Nixon.

Michael Shank (PhD ’12) published two articles in the VT Digger, Brandon, Vermont – the birthplace of EVs” on January 23, 2020, and “Planetary benefits of smaller families” on December 20, 2019. His article, “EVs celebrated,” was published in both the Rutland Herald and Times Argus on January 18, 2020. Shank was also published in Newsweek alongside Yvette Clarke in an article titled “BlackRock is smart to prioritize the climate—and business leaders know it. So what are they waiting for?” on January 17, 2020. He published a series of articles in Apolitical, including “Six more behavioral science tips for green policymaking” on December 18, 2019, “6 tips to make climate communication less awful” on January 14, 2020, and "6 more tips to win hearts and minds on climate change" on January 21, 2020. His op-ed titled “Vermont offers a peek at a solar energy future” was published by Reuters on January 20, 2020. Finally, his article titled “Vermont actions to slow climate change” was published in both Rutland Herald and Times Argus on December 21, 2019.

Karina Korostelina was quoted in an article by Mason News titled “Will a second chance at a Ukraine-Russia ceasefire be successful? Mason expert weighs in,” published December 19, 2019.

Samantha Borders-Shoemaker (PhD ‘19) was featured in an article by Mason News titled “Leaders highlight Winter Graduation,” published December 19, 2019.

Audrey Williams (MS Student) wrote an article titled “30th annual Lynch Lecture explores the intersection of human rights and restorative justice” for S-CAR News, published December 20, 2019. The article quoted Alpaslan Özerdem and Susan Hirsch.

Interviews, Podcasts, and Television Appearances

Ibrahim Fraihat (PhD ’07) was featured on a recent Al Jazeera podcast discussing the Trump Peace Plan in Israel/Palestine on January 31, 2020. He was interviewed on Al Jazeera on January 8, 2020, during a discussion of what the next phase between America and Iran following military escalation will be. On December 5, 2019, he was also interviewed on Al Jazeera, where he discussed the Turkish-Libyan agreement as it relates to the Eastern Mediterranean. Fraihat also discussed the repercussions of settlements in Palestine-related issues of conflict in an interview with Alaraby TV on December 2, 2019.

Mohammed Cherkaoui (MS ’07, PhD ’12)  was interviewed by Al Jazeera for an episode of the Inside Story series titled “What’s driving public anger?” The interview appeared on December 31, 2019. He was also featured in an interview with Deutsche Welle Arabic on December 31, 2019, during which he discussed important events and happenings throughout the past season. Cherkaoui also appeared on Alaraby TV on January 11, 2020, discussing the Ukrainian plane crash as it relates to Iranian politics. 

Dissertation Proposal Defense

Emily Sample defended her dissertation proposal, titled “Blood, Soil, Root, and Branch: Climate Change, Gender, and the Future of Mass Atrocity Prevention,” on December 9, 2019.

S-CAR Events, Presentations, and Public Lectures

Presentations and Public Events

Susan Hirsch presented a paper titled “The ICC and Rule of Law Promotion: Assessing the Effects on Conflict Resolution” at a conference held at the Centre for the Study and Practice of Conflict Resolution at the University of Malta on December 10, 2019. Proceedings of the conference, titled “The International Criminal Court: Law, Politics and Conflict Resolution,” will be published soon. 

On January 26, 2020,  Charles Chavis, Jr. joined the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture in Baltimore to guide a discussion of the film “Always in Season” following a screening. The film examines the death of Lennon Lacey, an African American teen from North Carolina. Though his death was ruled a suicide, his mother Claudia believes he was the victim of a modern-day lynching. 

Karina Korostelina held a research seminar on the “Dynamics of Identity and Power in Nation-building” at the National University of Singapore on January 16, 2020. She also gave a talk there titled “Reconsidering Reconciliation between Japan and Korea: Dynamics of Symbolic Boundaries and Representations of the Past” on January 23, 2020.

S-CAR Events

The Fall Undergraduate Research Symposium was held on December 2, 2019, at Merten Hall on the Fairfax campus. Students of CONF 490, the undergraduate research capstone, presented their individual research projects to their peers, staff, and faculty.

On December 2, 2019, S-CAR collaborated with Rondine Cittadella della Pace to present an event on the Rondine Method, held in Vernon Smith Hall on the Arlington campus.

Chip Hauss (Visiting Scholar) moderated a discussion between Linton Wells II, Chris Langdon, and Robert Gehorsam for an event titled “Innovating Beyond Peacebuilding.” The event was held in Vernon Smith Hall on the Arlington campus on December 3, 2019.

S-CAR continued its series of Admissions Information Sessions on December 3, 2019, in Vernon Smith Hall on the Arlington campus.

The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee concluded the semester with a meeting in Vernon Smith Hall on December 13, 2019.

On December 14, 2019, Charles Chavis, Jr. and the John Mitchell, Jr. Program for History, Justice, and Race brought together members of the Howard County (MD) community to support the development of a local coalition to address the legacy of lynching in the county.

On December 17, 2019, S-CAR hosted its Summer and Fall 2019 graduates at Vernon Smith Hall on the Arlington campus for the first Dean's Winter Reception.

S-CAR continued the tradition of enjoying lunch with Dean Özerdem during our “Lunched-In Wednesday” events, which were held each Wednesday throughout the end of last semester and the beginning of the spring.