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Call: Political Violence — Causes, Character, and Consequences

Call, Political Violence

Graduate Conference on May 31st–June 1st, St Antony’s College, University of Oxford

“Political Violence—Causes, Character, and Consequences”, an interdisciplinary graduate student conference, supported by the Centre for International Studies and the Antonian Fund, will be held at the University of Oxford on June 1st, preceded by a keynote event and dinner on May 31st from 5.30pm.

Keynote speakers: Stathis Kalyvas (University of Oxford), further speakers and senior researchers tbc.

Graduate students and early-career researchers from all disciplines concerned with questions of political violence are invited to share their original research in a conference devoted to violent contestation within and beyond states. In addition, we invite policy-makers and practitioners from relevant institutions to join us for a break-out session over lunch to synergise voices from both academia and practice.

The conference aims to unravel definitions and address questions related to political violence in an extensive way. Including such vast phenomena as riots, guerrilla warfare, insurgencies, terrorism, cyber warfare, rebellion, and civil wars, we encourage critical reflection and empirical analysis of the causes, character, and consequences of contemporary forms of political violence. Participants might be driven by, but are not limited to, topics that address the following questions:

  • How can political violence be defined, instrumentalized, and contested? How are its different manifestations linked? How does it relate to other forms of violence? How do power and hegemony affect both definition and manifestations of political violence?
  • What are the causes of different types of collective violence at the individual, group, and system-level? What consequences emerge for conflict and post-conflict environments?
  • How does the behaviour of local and external actors (e.g. violent/non-violent resistance, mobilization, humanitarian/military intervention) impact on the dynamics of violence? What are the empirical and ethical implications? 

With the specific intent to bridge theoretical thinking and empirical analysis in relevant fields, we welcome theoretical and methodological pluralism, including critical reflections, qualitative, and quantitative perspectives.

The conference will offer a forum to discuss work in progress, to connect with fellow scholars at various stages of research, and to engage with practitioners from the field. Selected speakers will have 20 minutes to present their paper, followed by a 10-minute discussion by a Senior Researcher and Q&A from the audience. Participation at the conference is free, but prior registration is required. For speakers, a small contribution to the cost of travel and accommodation is available.

To be considered, please submit

  • a summary of the paper (max 500 words) including a working title, the research topic, the theoretical framework, the methodological approach, preliminary results and further steps
  • a short bio (max 150 words) describing affiliation and research interests

to by February 25th, 2018. Accepted speakers will be notified by March 15th, 2018 and are asked to circulate their paper by May 1st, 2018. Registration for the conference opens February 1st, 2018 and can be found here. For updates, please check our website