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February 2021 Newsletter

As I looked across the newsletter stories we're sharing this month, one of our values jumped out: We look beyond the ivory tower. I had the opportunity to reflect on this value earlier this month at W&M’s Charter Day, where one of GRI’s champions, Bob Trice ’68, was honored with an Alumni Medallion. Bob was trained as an academic, and he went on to make an impact in both government and the private sector. You can learn more about Bob’s service and impact in a short video produced for the ceremony.

In the newsletter below, you’ll find three articles written for popular media outlets by Dr. Kelebogile Zvobgo, Director of GRI’s International Justice Lab; a story about AidData’s work with the African Population Health and Research Center; and a new one-stop shop to learn about Professor Carrie Dolan's global health research and her leadership on regional COVID response.

We also have a slate of exciting events coming up and through the magic of Zoom: Ambassador Dennis Ross will join us on March 2; the W&M Global Innovation Challenge will host its fifth annual hack-a-thon style international development case competition on March 19-20; and students and practitioners will have a chance to meet and network at the W&M Africa Networking Conference on April 10. Our signature event of the semester, "A Race to April 30: Presidential Administrations & the First 100 Days," will take place on 3/30 at 6pm.

Finally, our team is looking for alumni volunteers to provide resume feedback and career advice to students on March 16 and April 9: If you are willing to help current W&M students (or in getting on our list for future student networking events) please let us know. I hope to see you soon, whether in the ‘Burg or online at one of our upcoming events.


International Justice Lab

In Foreign Policy, Dr. Zvobgo penned an essay on how domestic transitional justice could improve the United States' foreign relations and national security. Dr. Zvobgo challenges a conventional wisdom that domestic policy and foreign policy are distinct when issues like human rights sit at the intersection, and she suggests a range of transitional justice remedies.


International Justice Lab

In the Washington Post, Dr. Zvobgo provides an explainer on why cases against Israeli and Palestinian personnel are admissible before the ICC. In short, Dr. Zvobgo argues, "As the ICC enters its third decade, the prosecutorial team and member countries appear determined to make sure that no country — however big or small — is above the law."


International Justice Lab

IJL Fellows Alexandra Byrne '23 and Bilen Zerie '23, and Dr. Zvobgo published an op-ed, "Put Racial Justice at Center of the Biden-Harris Transition Plan," published in Foreign Policy. The authors draw on insights from their research to recommend what the new administration can learn from transitional justice in racially divided societies, of note South Africa.



With support from the Hewlett Foundation, AidData has partnered with the African Population Health and Research Center, one of the continent’s premier think tanks, to test how policy research organizations in Africa can use semi-standardized tools to scale up the collection of important feedback data from their stakeholders in a sustainable way.



Check out the new Ignite Lab website, a one-stop shop to learn about Dr. Dolan's global health research and her leadership on regional COVID response, as well as how to get involved with or give to the lab, which is based at GRI in collaboration with the Department of Health Sciences.


Center for African Development

"Governments are changing their behavior because of the research that starts at William & Mary," said Henry Crossman '19 in the latest issue of W&M's Alumni Magazine. In the feature, read about the CAD project, led by Dr. Phil Roessler, that put Crossman and his peers in the room with policymakers.


American Bosnian Collaboration Project

New ABC Project research conducted by Hayley Hubbard '20 shows that university student participants developed and used intercultural communication competence (ICC) skills during the Project and were able to practice ICC skills of teamwork, communication, active listening, and empathy long after the Project.



In a new International Studies Quarterly article, Dr. Jeff Kaplow, Director of NukeLab, and his co-author Dr. Erik Gartzke examine the sources of uncertainty in international relations. Their findings offer a novel set of implications both for academics who study conflict and for policymakers faced with evaluating foreign military assessments.


Teaching, Research, and International Policy Project

Morgan Doll '22 used data from TRIP's most recent Snap Poll to evaluate efforts to prevent election meddling. Based on the data from IR scholars, Doll concludes that while election interference may seem like a primarily international issue, a combination of domestic policies and international cooperation might best combat this problem in future elections.