Counterinsurgency in Context


International Research Associates Program

In fall 2017, we will begin the inaugural International Research Associates Program. The program will provide intellectual context for conflict study and introduce students to new tools and methodologies, as well as create opportunities to develop relationships with mentors and alumni. This project is a joint venture between the Harris School of Public Policy, American University of Afghanistan, and The Pearson Institute for the Study and Resolution of Global Conflicts.


Counterinsurgency, a course

Counterinsurgency is a seminar course devoted to the study of (modern) armed rebellion across South and Southeast Asia. The primary audience is public policy students, as well as undergraduates in related social science fields. We will use cutting-edge theoretical and quantitative research to examine the causes and dynamics of a number of conflicts, from the Naxal movement in India to the Taliban in Afghanistan. The course will be organized around a set of core topics in the literature, with evidence from the region. Students enrolled in the course will have the opportunity to engage with ongoing field data collection efforts in Afghanistan, Indonesia, and Thailand. Course participants will be given prerelease access to newly declassified data on insurgent activity, in addition to a wealth of economic, geographic, political, and social information about key conflicts.

Download the syllabus here.


harris policy lab - Afghanistan

Starting in Winter 2017, we are initiating a new Harris Policy Lab focused on economic development and security dynamics in Afghanistan. Students will have a unique opportunity to engage with ongoing research that leverages machine learning and very high resolution satellite imagery to measure granular economic activity.