About Me


I am senior researcher with the Program on Nonviolent Action at the United States Institute of Peace, where I conduct applied research on nonviolent action and its intersections with peacebuilding, countering violent extremism, and democratization.

I am the author of From Dissent to Democracy: The Promise and Peril of Civil Resistance Transitions, published by Oxford University Press.

I have previously worked as a post-doctoral research fellow in the department of Sociology and Political Science at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, an external associate at the Peace Research Institution of Oslo (PRIO), and a research fellow at the Sie Cheou-Kang Center for International Security and Diplomacy, where I supervised data collection for the Social Conflict Analysis Database (SCAD) and the Nonviolent and Violent Campaigns and Outcomes (NAVCO) 3.0 data project

I received my PhD in International Relations from the University of Denver in March 2018, my MA also from the University of Denver in 2014, and my BA in International Affairs from Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts in 2008. I was a 2012 recipient of the Korbel School’s Sie Fellowship and a 2016 recipient of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict’s PhD fellowship. Prior to entering graduate school I worked for study abroad programs in Egypt and India and helped found BIRDS International, an NGO addressing rural poverty issues in South India.  I currently live in Washington DC and enjoy running, camping, and mountain climbing.

Publications

Books and Monographs

2020. From Dissent to Democracy: The Promise and Peril of Civil Resistance Transitions. New York, NY: Oxford University Press

2018. When Civil Resistance Succeeds: Lessons for Building Democracy after Popular Nonviolent UprisingsWashington, DC: International Center on Nonviolent Conflict Press.

2016. Making or Breaking Nonviolent Discipline in Civil Resistance Movements. Washington, DC: International Center on Nonviolent Conflict Press.


Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

(Conditional Acceptance) “Organizations, Resistance, and Democracy: How Civil Society Organizations Impact Democratization.” International Studies Quarterly. With Charles Butcher and Jessica Maves Braithwaite.

(Forthcoming) “Close but Not Too Close: Opposition Network Strategy and Democratization in Zambia.” Social Movement Studies.

(Forthcoming). “Introducing the Anatomy of Resistance Campaigns Dataset.” Journal of Peace Research. With Charles Butcher, Jessica Maves Braithwaite, Ingrid Vik Bakken, and Marius Wishman.

2021. “Activists Against Autocrats: TSMO Networks and Democratic Diffusion.” Frontiers in Political Science. With John Chin.

2020. “Sickness or Silence: Social Movement Adaptation to COVID-19.” Journal of International Affairs (OnlineFirst). With Miranda Rivers.

2020. “Curving the Resource Curse: Negative Effects of Oil and Gas Revenue on Civil Resistance Campaign Onset.” Research & Politics (OnlineFirst).

2020. “Tangled up in Blue: The Effect of UN Peacekeeping on Nonviolent Protest in Post-Civil War Countries.” International Studies Quarterly (OnlineFirst). With Margherita Belgioioso and Jessica di Salvatore

2019. “Nonviolent Resistance and the Quality of Democracy” Conflict Management and Peace Science (OnlineFirst). With Felix Bethke.

2018. “Days of Rage: Introducing the NAVCO 3.0 Dataset.” Journal of Peace Research 55(4):534-544. With Erica Chenoweth and Orion Lewis. 

2015.  “Collecting Data on Nonviolent Action: Lessons Learned and Ways Forward,” Journal of Peace Research, 52(1):129-133. With Joel Day and Erica Chenoweth.


Reports and Book Chapters

(Forthcoming) “Mind of the Movement: Exploring the Psychosocial Dynamics of Nonviolent Action.” USIP Special Report. With Michael Niconchuk and Sarah Ryan.

2021. “Digital Authoritarianism and Nonviolent Action: Challenging the Digital Counterrevolution.” USIP Special Report. With Matthew Cebul.

2021. “Nonviolent Resistance, Social Justice, and Positive Peace” in The Palgrave Handbook of Positive Peace ed. by Katerina Standish, Heather Devere, Rachel Rafferty, and Adan Suazo. New York, NY: Springer Publishing.

2021. “Nonviolent Action and Transitions to Democracy: The Impact of Inclusive Dialogue and Negotiation.” USIP Peaceworks. With Veronique Dudouet

2020. “Setting the Stage for Peace Processes: The Role of Nonviolent Movements.” in Pioneering Peace Pathways: Making Connections to End Violent Conflict, Accord Issue 29 (September).

2020. “Donning the Velvet: Nonviolent Resistance in the 2018 Armenian Revolution.” in Armenia’s Velvet Revolution: Authoritarian Decline and Civil Resistance in a Multipolar World. ed. By Anna Ohanyan and Laurence Broers. London, UK: I.B. Tauris.

2017. Struggles from Below: Literature Review on Human Rights Struggles by Domestic Actors.Washington, DC: USAID Democracy Fellows and Grants Program. With Erica Chenoweth, Tricia Olsen, Kyleanne Hunter, Pauline Moore, and Heidi Reynolds-Stenson.

2016. “Unarmed Civilian Protection in the Israeli/Palestinian Conflict.” in Wielding Nonviolence in the Midst of Violence: Case Studies of Good Practices in Unarmed Civilian Protectioned. by Ellen Furnari. Wahlenau, Institute for Peace Work and Nonviolent Conflict Transformation. With Eli McCarthy.

2015. “Insurgency,” in James D. Wright, ed. International Encyclopedia of the Social and Behavioral Sciences 2nd Edition. Elsevier. With Erica Chenoweth.


Other Publications (Selected)

2020. “Mali’s Coup: Harbinger of Hope or Uncertainty?USIP Analysis and Commentary (September 10). With Anushka Bose.

2020. “What’s Next for the Peaceful Uprising in Belarus.USIP Analysis and Commentary (August 27). With Anushka Bose.

2020. “Nonviolent Action in the Time of Coronavirus.” USIP Analysis and Commentary (March 25). With Miranda Rivers.

2020. “Nonviolent Action and Peacebuilding: Contradictory or Complementary?” The Olive Branch (January 27). With Maria J. Stephan

2019. “Can Hong Kong’s Extradition Protesters Succeed Without a Leader?” South China Morning Post (June 15)

2018. “Lessons on Building Democracy after Nonviolent Revolutions.” Waging Nonviolence (November 13).

2018. “New Data Offers Insights into the Dynamics of Nonviolent Resistance.” Waging Nonviolence (May 12). With Erica Chenoweth.

2017. “In Trump’s America Who’s Protesting and Why?  Here’s our February Report.” The Monkey Cage (April 5). With Erica Chenoweth, Jeremy Pressman, and Stephen Zunes.

2017. Review of Adam Burgos, Political Philosophy and Political Action(Rowman & Littlefield, 2016), Global Change, Peace & Security, Vol 29, no. 2.

2016. “Why Do Peaceful Protests “Turn Violent?” Political Violence at a Glance (October 25).

2015. Review of Brian Martin, Nonviolence Unbound(Irene Publishing, 2015), Journal of Peace Research (August).

2015. “Why This Week’s Coup in Burkina Faso Might Not Last.” Foreign Policy Democracy Lab (September 18).

2014. “What Next for the Lwili Revolution? What the History of Successful Nonviolent Movements Teaches us About the Political Transition in Burkina Faso.” Foreign Policy Democracy Lab (November 18).