Ches Thurber


  • International Security
  • Armed Conflict
  • Contentious Politics
  • Civil Resistance
  • Civil-Military Relations
  • Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods

Overview of Scholarly Activity

Ches Thurber, Ph.D., (Tufts University, The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Medford, Massachusetts) is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science. His research and teaching focus on international security, conflict and contentious politics. His book project, Between Gandhi and Mao: The Social Roots of Civil Resistance, investigates how challengers to state power come to embrace or reject a nonviolent strategy in pursuit of regime change. In another major project, he is working with a team of researchers to build a dataset of the ethnic composition of military forces around the world. His research has been published or is forthcoming in International Studies Quarterly, the Journal of Global Security Studies, Conflict Management and Peace Science, and, Small Wars and Insurgencies. It has been supported by the Smith Richardson Foundation, Harvard University's Program on Negotiation, the Eisenhower Institute, and the Bradley Foundation. He has provided commentary for WNIJ radio, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's "Big Ideas" radio program and The Washington Post's "Monkey Cage" blog.

Selected Publications

"Social Ties and the Strategy of Civil Resistance" Forthcoming at International Studies Quarterly.

"Ethnic Barriers to Civil Resistance." Journal of Global Security Studies 3, no. 3 (July 2018): 255-270.

"The Security Force Ethnicity (SFE) Project: Introducing a New Dataset," with Paul Lorenzo Johnson in Conflict Management and Peace Science, Online First (June 2017).

"Militias as Sociopolitical Movements: Lessons from Iraq’s Armed Shia Groups" in Small Wars and Insurgencies 25, nos. 5-6 (October 2014): 900-923.

"A Step Short of the Bomb: Explaining the Strategy of Nuclear Hedging" in Journal of Public and International Affairs 22 (2011).

"From Coexistence to Cleansing: The Rise of Sectarian Violence in Baghdad, 2003-2006" in al-Nakhlah: Journal of Southwest Asia and Islamic Civilization (March 2011).

Ches Thurber


Office: Zulauf Hall 414

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