Carter School partners with U.S. State Department for conflict prevention program


George Mason University, led by the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution, is one of seven universities partnering with the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO) as an Academic Center of Conflict Anticipation and Prevention.

Mason Square outdoors
Mason Square. Photo by Ron Aira/Office of University Branding

Developed under the supervision of Dean Alpaslan Özerdem and faculty members Susan Allen and Karina Korostelina, this partnership will allow Carter School students to contribute to international peacebuilding efforts with actionable research, and provide valuable insight as to how the State Department considers approaches to conflict prevention or mitigation in regions around the world.

“This is an excellent partnership for building bridges between policymaking and academia on myriad topics in conflict prevention,” said Özerdem.

Undergraduate and graduate students in the Carter School will conduct research, under faculty oversight, on “current, real-world conflict-related issues” as identified by CSO offices in the interest of supporting conflict resolution and stabilization efforts.

“I am pleased that when the U.S. State Department sought out leading university research centers in conflict analysis and resolution, they approached the Carter School,” said Susan Allen, director of graduate programs at the Carter School. “Our diverse student body comes from all over the world, and our faculty focuses on peace and conflict resolution from diverse methodological approaches.”

Students will be able to advance their research skills and write policy-oriented papers and briefs, said Karina Korostelina, director of the Peace Lab on Reconciling Conflicts and Intergroup Divisions at the Carter School. “The access to vast databases and localized data is essential for the understanding of conflict dynamics and complexities of peace and justice processes.”