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About Us

Sub-state conflict is the source of tremendous human suffering and financial burden worldwide. Last year, 68.5 million people -- or the equivalent of 20 people per minute -- were forced to flee their homes due to conflict (UNHCR, 2017), and the most recent statistics estimate annual economic costs of conflict around $14.8 trillion (12.4% of world GDP) (Institute for Economics and Peace, 2018).

While violent conflict is likely to remain a perennial feature of human group interaction, the Political Violence Lab engages in research that seeks to inform efforts to mitigate its frequency, intensity, and downstream effects. The lab is co-directed by Dr. Andrew Shaver, its founding director and a postdoctoral research fellow at Stanford University, and Dr. Dotan Haim, a Dickey Center postdoctoral fellow who will begin an assistant professorship at American University’s School of International Service later this year. Meghna Ray currently serves as the lab’s chief executive assistant. Debora Hyemin Han held this position during the summer and fall terms of 2018.

The lab directly engages undergraduates in research, with an aim to ultimately publish findings across academic and policy platforms. Over five terms, the lab has involved the participation of 69 Dartmouth College undergraduate research assistants on collaborative projects with researchers at Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, Yale, and the University of Chicago. Several of the lab’s projects are described here.

Support for the Political Violence Lab is made possible by the generosity of Susan K. and Stuart E. Lucas ’81 through the Lucas Family Fund for Undergraduate Research.