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Full-time Faculty

Full-time Faculty



Dr. Vera Jelinek’s mission to create a community of global citizens has spanned over two decades at New York University. After an initial career in international educational exchange, she joined NYU as the director of International Programs, Social and Natural Sciences. While overseeing the growth of programs in the School of Continuing and Professional Studies, Jelinek envisioned and established a new department of international affairs. In 1999, the prestige and overall excellence of the international affairs program allowed Jelinek to found The Lillian Vernon Center for International Affairs at NYU. The Vernon Center provided Jelinek with the opportunity to develop innovative and compelling public programs that attracted world leaders, the U.N. community, authors, journalists and scholars in international affairs.

Under Dr. Jelinek’s direction, 2004 brought the birth of the Masters of Science in Global Affairs program and the emergence of the Center for Global Affairs (CGA) in lower Manhattan’s historic Woolworth Building. Currently, the CGA has over 300 graduate students and presents public programs during the academic year which bring together NYU students and the greater New York community for conversations on critical global issues with experts in the field. Dr. Jelinek maintains close ties with international and nongovernmental organizations, the UN community, international media, and the US Department of State. She has a Ph.D. in modern European history from NYU, a Masters in International Affairs from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a B.A. in history from Queens College. She is listed in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in American Women and Who’s Who in the East. She is conversant in French, Italian and Hungarian.



Dr. Carolyn Kissane serves as Clinical Associate Professor at the Center for Global Affairs at New York University where she teaches graduate level courses examining the Central Asian region, transformations in China, the geopolitics of oil, comparative energy politics, resource security, civil society organizations, and
women’s movements. She serves as the Coordinator of the Energy and Environment concentration at the Center and is faculty advisor to the Energy Policy International Club. She held a two year fellowship from the Carnegie Council for Ethics and International Affairs and received a Fulbright Hayes Doctoral Dissertation Research Award, Teachers College Columbia University Dean’s Grant, National Security Graduate Enhancement Fellowship, IREX Caspian Sea Fellowship, IREX travel grant for study in Kazakhstan, and an IREX Individual Advanced Research Opportunities Grant to examine the impact of natural resources on civil society development. In recognition of her unwavering commitment to education Dr. Kissane was awarded the esteemed NYU Excellence in Teaching Award in 2007 and nominated for the NYU-wide Distinguished Teaching Award in 2008 and 2009. She received the SPS Award for Teaching Excellence in 2009.

In 2009 Dr. Kissane received a grant from the Canadian government to lead a group of students to visit the Canadian Oil Sands in Fort McMurray and to visit with oil sands leaders in Calgary. Her work with Canada continues in the form of event partnerships and a special series on the Arctic which she is organizing with the Government of Quebec. Complementing her academic, public service and consultant experience, Kissane is the author of numerous publications including an article on history education in Comparative Education, Freedom House: Countries at the Crossroads report on Kazakhstan, Central Asia, Great Decisions Series, and Evaluating Human Rights Education. She also has chapters on transitional challenges in education in Central Asia and human rights education in Europe, an article on Girls’ Education and Democratization in the Post-Taliban Era and another focusing on the oil extractive industry published in Globalization, Societies and Education. Dr. Kissane received her Ph.D. from Columbia University.



Mary Beth Altier is a Clinical Assistant Professor at NYU’s Center for Global Affairs. She received her Ph.D. in Politics from Princeton University in 2011 and then worked as a post-doctoral research fellow at the Pennsylvania State University on a U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.K. government funded project on terrorist disengagement, re-engagement, and recidivism. She also worked as a postdoctoral researcher on a project on civil war and democratization based at Nuffield College, University of Oxford. 

Mary Beth’s research interests are in international security, foreign policy, political violence, and political behavior. Her recent work centers on the reasons why individuals support the use of political violence in developed and developing democracies as well as why they participate in acts of political violence, especially terrorism. She is also interested in the disengagement and rehabilitation of ex-combatants and identifying empirically based methods for assessing risk of re-engagement. Mary Beth is preparing a book manuscript based upon her dissertation, which won the 2013 American Political Science Association’s Ernst B. Haas award, and she is also the 2015 recipient of the American Political Science Association’s Organized Section on European Politics and Society’s Best Paper Award. Her research has been featured in the Journal of Peace Research, Terrorism and Political Violence, Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, and Journal of Strategic Security.



Beginning in September 2017, Dr. Christopher Ankersen will take up a position as Clinical Associate Professor at the Center for Global Affairs at New York University where he will teach in the Transnational Security concentration. Prior to joining NYU, Christopher was the Security Advisor for the United Nations system in Thailand. Previously, he held positions at the UN Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials in Phnom Penh, Cambodia; the UN Offices in Geneva and Vienna; and with the Department of Safety and Security in New York, where he was Desk Officer for Iraq in 2005 and 2006.

From 2002 to 2004, Dr. Ankersen was Ralf Dahrendorf Scholar at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has taught at the LSE, the London Centre for International Relations, King’s College London, Carleton University, and the Royal Military College of Canada and lectured at staff colleges in Canada, Australia, and Denmark. From 2000 to 2005, he acted as a strategy consultant to militaries, governments and private firms in the UK and Canada. From 1988 to 2000, Dr. Ankersen was an officer in the Canadian Forces, serving in Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, including on overseas missions with the UN and NATO.

He has produced a number of publications on international relations and strategic studies, including The Politics of Civil-Military Cooperation and two edited volumes: Understanding Global Terror and Civil-Military Cooperation in Post-Conflict Operations.

Dr. Ankersen is a member of the Regional Consultative Group for Asia and the Pacific on Civil-Military Coordination in Disaster Relief and Senior Research Fellow at the German-Southeast Asian Center of Excellence for Public Policy and Good Governance (CPG), Faculty of Law, Thammasat University, Thailand.

His current research interests include civil military relations, strategic studies and international security. He is particularly interested in the geopolitics and transnational security issues of Southeast Asia.

Christopher Ankersen holds a BA (Hons) in International Politics and History from Royal Roads Military College (Canada) and an MSc and PhD in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science.



Dr. Goetz, who joined CGA in January 2014, has served at the United Nations since 2005 as a Policy Director of Governance, Peace and Security, first at UNIFEM and since 2011 at the UN’s newest agency: UN Women. Prior to joining UNIFEM in 2005, she was a Professor of Political Science at the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex where she worked since 1991.   She also served the United Nations Development Programme in Chad and Guinea in the mid-1980s.  While at the UN over the past decade Dr. Goetz spearheaded initiatives to promote women’s empowerment in the UN’s peace building work in post-conflict situations, to build peacekeepers’ capacities to detect and prevent sexual violence in conflict, and to support women’s organizations’ efforts to participate in peace talks and post-conflict decision-making.

Dr. Goetz is a political scientist who specializes in research on development policies in fragile states to promote the interests of marginalized social groups, particularly poor women, and on the study of democratization and good governance in South Asia and East Africa.  This has included research on pro-poor and gender-sensitive approaches to public sector reforms, anti-corruption initiatives, and decentralization, and means of supporting political liberalization and state building in fragile states and post-conflict situations.

Professor Goetz is the author of seven books on the subjects of gender, politics and policy in developing countries, and on accountability reforms - the latest is a 2009 edited volume: Governing Women: Women in Politics and Governance in Developing Countries (Routlegde). Professor Goetz has engaged in a wide range of advisory work related to gender, democratization, and governance, including direct advisory work for developing country governments, for multilateral economic institutions and bilateral donors, and for NGOs.



Dr. Thomas Hill is a clinical associate professor at the Center for Global Affairs at New York University’s School of Professional Studies, where he is director of the Initiative for Peacebuilding through Education. He oversees the peacebuilding concentration within the Master of Science in Global Affairs (MSGA) program as well as the graduate certificate in peacebuilding. Dr. Hill is a peacebuilding practitioner and researcher with more than a decade of experience focusing on Iraq; since 2003, he and has made more than 30 visits to Iraq and has overseen design, development and implementation of a series of inter-related research and educational projects focused on increasing levels of peacefulness in Iraq. Tom serves as principal investigator for three ongoing projects in Iraq: “Supporting the University of Duhok in Becoming the Center of Excellence for Peacebuilding in Iraq” (sponsored by the U.S. Department of State); “Improving Local Capacity to Build Peace and Improve Social Cohesion Among Host and Displaced Communities in Duhok and Nineveh Governorates)” (sponsored by the United Nations Development Programme) and “Iraq Re:Coded: (also sponsored by the UN Development Programme). He also teaches the Joint Research Seminar in Peacebuilding and the Advanced Joint Research Seminar in Peacebuilding, a two-course sequence in partnership with the University of Duhok that has been supported by the U.S. Department of State and which facilitates collaborative peace research projects between MSGA students and graduate student counterparts in Iraq. He previously directed a two-year British Council-funded project, “Building Capacity of Iraqi Academics in Peacebuilding Instruction and Practice.” Tom has developed and teaches a variety of other graduate-level courses, including: Peacemaking and Peacebuilding; the Workshop in Applied Peacebuilding; Conflict Assessment, and; Structures of Peace. He is a member of the Institute for Economics and Peace. A former journalist, his research interests include: the role of universities as actors and sites for peacebuilding; the importance of community-centered approaches to civil society-led peacebuilding; and the use of conflict analysis and assessment as tools for integrating development and peacebuilding. Tom earned his Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education, writing a dissertation entitled “Establishing Peace and Conflict Studies Programs in Iraqi Universities: Necessary Conditions and Short-term Implications.” He earned a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs and a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Pennsylvania. 



John Kane recently completed his PhD in Political Science at Stony Brook University. He received an M.S. in Global Affairs from New York University’s Center for Global Affairs with a focus on International Relations.  His primary research interests include political psychology and behavior, U.S. foreign policy, and experimental research design. His research has been published in a variety of peer-reviewed journals, including the British Journal of Political Science, Public Opinion Quarterly, Presidential Studies Quarterly, and Social Science Quarterly. He has taught undergraduate courses on human rights and global environmental politics, political ideology and foreign policy, as well as graduate courses covering quantitative research methods and data analysis.  He recently received an award for “Outstanding Research Potential” from Stony Brook University, as well as teaching excellence awards from both Stony Brook University and New York University.



Prior to joining the CGA, Sylvia Maier was on the faculty of the Center for European and Mediterranean Studies at NYU and the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. She received her Ph.D. in Political Science in 2001 from the University of Southern California.

Professor Maier’s principal fields of interest are women’s rights and empowerment in the Global South, with a particular focus on Afghanistan, Pakistan and the UAE, where she has worked, taught and conducted extensive field research, honor-based violence, and women’s movements in the Middle East, Gulf and South Central Asia. She has spoken and published on these and related subjects and is currently working on two book manuscripts, tentatively titled “Paradise in Her Hands: Women’s Empowerment in Afghanistan” and, with Jens Rudbeck, “Baring It All: Women, Nudity and Social Protest.”



Peter Marber is a professional money manager, teacher, and writer focused on globalization and financial markets. He currently directs the Global Economy program at NYU’s Center for Global Affairs. Since 1987, Marber has professionally invested billions of dollars in the emerging markets for many of the world’s largest corporations and financial groups. Previously he was head of Emerging Markets Investments for Loomis, Sayles & Co., and Chief Business Strategist and head of global emerging markets debt at HSBC Global Asset Management. Before that, he was founding partner, senior portfolio manager and chief strategist for The Atlantic Funds, which was acquired by HSBC in 2005. He began his career as a trader at UBS and was also president of the emerging market subsidiaries of Wasserstein Perella & Company.

Marber has taught graduate courses since 1994 and has been a faculty member at Columbia, Harvard, and Johns Hopkins. He has authored more than 100 columns and is routinely quoted in the media including CNN, CNBC, the Financial Times, Reuters, Bloomberg, and the Wall Street Journal. He serves or and has served on boards for institutions including the New America Foundation, World Policy Institute, Columbia University, and the Emerging Markets Trade Association. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in London. He has authored or edited six books including his most recent Brave New Math: Information, Globalization, and New Economic Thinking in the 21st Century (2015), and The Evolution of Liberal Arts in the Global Age (2017, with Araya). Dr. Marber holds degrees from Johns Hopkins, Columbia, and University of Cambridge.




Michael F. Oppenheimer is Clinical Professor in the Global Affairs masters degree program at New York University. His courses include International Relations, International Political Economy, U.S. Foreign Policy, Transnational Security, and Future International Systems. He is the originator and director of the Carnegie Corporation funded project on alternate futures for pivotal countries, which has published China 2020, Russia 2020, Turkey 2020, Ukraine 2020, Pakistan 2020, and Syria 2018. He is at work on a book for Oxford University Press, due in Fall of 2014, on the use of alternate futures in foreign policy decision making.

He has done extensive consulting, specializing in futures oriented policy analysis for the US foreign policy and intelligence communities, and for think tanks. He is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and Senior Consulting Fellow for scenario planning at the International Institute for Strategic Studies.



Before joining the Center for Global Affairs, Jens Rudbeck was a Lecturer at the International Development Program at Roskilde University, the Department of Political Science at Copenhagen University in Denmark, and was a Visiting Scholar at the Department of Sociology at Columbia University. His primary areas of interest and expertise are international development aid, political conflicts and political reforms in Africa, and social movements in development countries, particularly in India. In addition to teaching various issues of development studies, Professor Rudbeck has been a Researcher at the Intra-State Conflict Program at Copenhagen Peace Research Institute. His research has mainly focused on political struggle and regime change in sub-Saharan Africa, and women’s movements in India. He holds an M.Sc. in International Development and a Ph.D. in Political Science.

W.P.S. Sidhu, Ph.D., M.A.


Waheguru Pal Singh (WPSSidhu joined CGA as a visiting scholar in September 2016. Concurrently, he is nonresident senior fellow for foreign policy at Brookings Institution, nonresident senior fellow at NYU’s Center on International Cooperation, an associate fellow at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy and a guest faculty at the NATO Defense College. Dr. Sidhu has more than 25 years of experience in traditional and non-traditional security issues, specifically in arms control and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction - particularly nuclear weapons - and the role of emerging powers, especially India, in the evolving global order. His previous academic and professional positions include vice president of programs at the EastWest Institute, and director of the innovative New Issues in Security Course at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy.

Dr. Sidhu has also served as a consultant to the UN and its affiliate agencies, and to other intergovernmental agencies. In addition to his pedagogic experience, he regularly organizes and conducts track-two projects with institutions in the US, Europe, China, India, and Pakistan to facilitate a dialogue among young scholars on international peace and security issues. He is the author of multiple books, chapters, and articles dealing with defense and security issues, and is a regular commentator on security issues on CNN International, BBC World Service and other media outlets. His latest publication is Shaping the Emerging World: India and the Multilateral Order.



Jennifer Trahan is Associate Clinical Professor of Global Affairs at N.Y.U.  She teaches:  International Law; Human Rights; International Justice; Transitional Justice; U.S. Use of Force & the “Global War on Terror,” and a field intensive on Justice in the Former Yugoslavia, which travels to Bosnia, Serbia and The Hague.  She has served as counsel and of counsel to the International Justice Program of Human Rights Watch; Iraq Prosecutions Consultant to the International Center of Transitional Justice; and worked on cases before the Special Court for Sierra Leone and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.  She is the author of “Genocide, War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity:  A Digest of the Case Law of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda” (HRW 2010), and “Genocide, War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity:  A Topical Digest of the Case Law of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.” (HRW 2006).  The latter book was released by Universidad Iberoamericana in Spanish, and her earlier books have been translated by the UNDP into Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian, and by Human Rights Watch into French.  She is also the author of numerous law reviews, including “Why the Killing in Darfur is Genocide” and “The Rome Statute’s Amendment on the Crime of Aggression:  Negotiations at the Kampala Review Conference,” as well as several articles about the work of the Iraqi High Tribunal.  She has also served as an Independent Expert to Meetings of the International Criminal Court’s Special Working Group on the Crime of Aggression, and to the International Criminal Court’s Review Conference in Kamapala, Uganda; as Chairperson of the American Branch of the International Law Association’s International Criminal Court Committee; and as a member of the American Bar Association 2010 ICC Task Force.  She is currently a member of the Executive Committee of ABILA, and the Association of the Bar of the City of New York’s Task Force on National Security and the Rule of Law.  She has also taught as an adjunct at Columbia University, Fordham Law School, Brooklyn Law School, The New School, and lectured at Salzburg Law School’s Institute on International Criminal Law.  Prior to entering the field of international law, she spent 10 years in private practice as a litigator at the New York City law firm Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP.   She holds an A.B. from Amherst College, a J.D. from N.Y.U. School of Law and an LL.M from Columbia Law School, specializing in international law.