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Professor brings peacekeeping expertise to Nigeria

  • Peacekeeping conference
    Peacekeeping conference  Psychology Professor Harvey Langholtz (left) recently participated in a conference on peacekeeping in Nigeria.  Courtesy photo
  • Peacekeeping conference
    Peacekeeping conference  Langholtz (fourth from the right) poses for a photo with other conference attendees.  Courtesy photo
  • Peacekeeping
    Peacekeeping  Langholtz (center) poses for a photo at the Nigerian Army Peacekeeping Centre.  Courtesy photo
  • On patrol
    On patrol  Langholtz poses for a photo with members of an Nigerian Army patrol in Kaduna, Nigeria.  Courtesy photo
  • Keeping guard
    Keeping guard  Langholtz, seen here near a guard post, is known internationally as an expert on peacekeeping.  Courtesy photo
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A William & Mary professor known for his work on peacekeeping recently brought his expertise to Nigeria.

Harvey Langholtz, a professor of psychology at the College, traveled to the Federal Republic of Nigeria over spring break to present a paper at a conference on peacekeeping.

The event, which took place in Jaji, Kaduna State, fostered discussions on “ways to end the sectarian violence, terrorism, and lawlessness that has plagued the region,” said Langholtz. On Jan. 20, almost 200 people were killed in bombings of churches in the nearby city of Kano, for which the group Boko Haram claimed responsibility. Earlier this week, 13 more were killed in Jos by a suicide bomber. During the time Langholtz was there, one Italian and one citizen of the U.K. were taken hostage and killed before British commandos could rescue them.

Langholtz presented a paper titled “The Psychology of Peacekeeping” at the conference, which was organized by Nigeria’s Society for Peace Studies and Practice. The Governor of the State of Kaduna, Patrick I. Yakowa, was among the conference’s attendees.

As specialist in United Nations diplomacy, the psychology of peacekeeping and peacekeeping training, Langholtz has long been called upon for his expertise. In 2011, he participated in a U.N. panel discussion about the role of women in war and peace building. Two years earlier, he received the Peacekeeping Education and Training Award during the annual meeting of the International Association of Peacekeeping Training Centres, held in Sydney, Australia. From 1991 to 1993, he worked as a political officer and member of the U.S. Delegation to the U.N.

In addition to his work at William & Mary, Langholtz has been involved in an ongoing project for the development and distribution of e-learning courses on U.N. peacekeeping.

Langholtz has written and edited numerous papers and books about peacekeeping, including “The Psychology of Peacekeeping.” He is also the editor of the Journal of International Peacekeeping.