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Dr Yvan Guichaoua visits from the University of East Anglia – “The Puzzle of Recruitment in Irregular Armed Groups

21 March, 2013

On 19 March 2013, the Centre for International Security Studies (CISS) hosted a roundtable with visiting academic Dr Yvan Guichaoua from the School of International Development at the University of East Anglia for postgraduate students and members of the Centre and the Department of Government and International Relations.

Dr Guichaoua’s roundtable included an intimate look at recruitment in irregular armed groups specifically in West Africa. He shared his thoughts on the motivations, recruitment and trajectories of those involved in irregular violence, discussing the reasons why people join, and why they remain, in irregular armed groups.

The talk and roundtable discussion was based on the findings of Dr Guichaoua’s recently published book, Understanding Political Violence (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011).

The event was both informative and thought-provoking, finishing with a vigorous Q&A after the presentation.

Dr Guichaoua completed a PhD in Development Economics at the Ecole des hautes études en sciences sociales in 2004 then joined the Centre for Research on Inequality, Human Security and Ethnicity (CRISE) in Oxford as a research officer.  In 2009-10, he held a teaching fellowship at Yale University, as a member of the Program on Order, Conflict and Violence (OCV).  At CRISE and OCV, he worked on the drivers of youth enlistment in violent irregular armed groups.  Dr Guichaoua has consulted with the French and Italian governments as well as NGOs such as Medecins San Frontieres, commentated extensively on the Sahel in the media, and he wrote the International Crisis Group’s July 2012 report on Mali.

Dr Guichaoa’s visit to Australia is sponsored by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).


Prof. James Der Derian, Dr Yvan Guichaoua and Jacob Berah (DFAT) 













Professor James Der Derian, Dr Yvan Guichaoua and Jacob Berah (DFAT)