'Armed Conflict and Maternal Health in Sub-Saharan Africa', FRIPRO Young Researcher Talent Project, Headed by Gudrun Østby.
'Conflict Trends'. Collaborative project with the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Project Director.
'Youth Exclusion and Political Violence', project funded by the Research Council of Norway (2008-2012).
'Security Implications of Climate Change', project funded by the Research Council of Norway (2009-2012). Director of sub-project on Urban Violence.
General research interests:
* Demography and political violence
* Climate change, environmental change and armed conflict
* The politics of census-taking
* Demographic consequences of armed conflict
2013- Research Professor, PRIO
2011-12 Research Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.
2007- Senior Researcher, Centre for the Study of Civil War, PRIO.
2010- Editor, Journal of Peace Research (JPR). Associate Editor (2006-2010), Editorial Committee Member (2004-2006), Book Review Editor 2004-05.
2002-2006 PhD Candidate and Research Fellow, Centre for the Study of Civil War, PRIO.
2005-06 Visiting Scholar at the East-West Center, Honolulu, Hawaii.
Investigations Assistant on the 'Population Project', The UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), Office of the Prosecutor. The Hague, Netherlands.
Secretary General, Socialist Youth League (Sosialistisk Ungdom) of Norway.
Research Assistant, Statistics Norway, Division for Social and Demographic Research.
PhD in Political Science, University of Oslo, 2007.
Cand. Polit., Political Science, University of Oslo 2002. Courses in African politics, Statistics, Demography, Institutional theory and Nation, state and nationalism.
Cand. mag., University of Oslo 1995. Courses in Middle East/North African Studies, Demography, Political Science, Economics
Headlines from battlefields in Syria, Libya, Nigeria, Afghanistan, and Ukraine give the impression that the world is becoming ever more violent. Indeed, since 2013 the number of armed conflicts in the world and the number of battle deaths has risen. Fortunately, the long-term trends nevertheless driving the waning of war are still at work. Since the Korean War, battle casualties have been declining. As a result of the civil wars in Syria and Iraq, casualties have risen to the highest level in 25 years, but are still far below levels of the Cold War. The number of conflicts has also risen in 2013 and 2014, ...
The UN’s new Sustainable Development Goals are ready for adoption. For the first time, the UN will measure the incidence of one of the most controversial, but important, development indicators: the amount of armed conflict in the world. On 25 September this year, a UN summit will adopt the new Sustainable Development Goals. These will replace the Millennium Development Goals dating from 2000, which expire this year. Originally Norway pressed for the Millennium Development Goals to include the goal of a more peaceful society. This turned out to be too controversial. Several countries feared that such a goal would legitimize ...
Posted by Idean Salehyan & Henrik Urdal on Monday, 9 February 2015
Quality data is at the heart of quality research. The scholarly community depends on valid, reliable, and easily accessible data in order to empirically test our theories of social and political processes. Yet quantitative data is not “truth” in an absolute sense, but rather, is a numeric representation of complex phenomena. For conflict researchers, the challenge of collecting quality data is particularly acute given the nature of our enterprise. Given the costs and risks involved, it is practically impossible to observe every battle, civilian massacre, human rights violation, or protest event. Therefore, we often rely upon other sources — journalists, ...
On 10 December Nobel’s Peace Prize 2014 is awarded to Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai. Critical voices have claimed that their work is more about rights activism than promoting peace and that there is no obvious association between education and peace. Research into the causes of war suggests, however, that the Nobel Committee was right on target. A good prize The human rights activists Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai were awarded the Peace Prize in recognition of their campaigns for the rights of children and young people and for the right to education. While in the past the Nobel Committee ...
Posted by Henrik Urdal on Friday, 5 September 2014
Humanitarian organizations may easily succumb to the temptation to misuse numbers and statistics in order to promote their own causes. Does the end justify the means? Disasters are most dangerous for moms reported Save the Children’s Carolyn S Miles in Huffington Post when presenting the organization’s State of the World’s Mothers report for 2014. The claim was followed by a number: women and children are ‘14 times more likely to die in a disaster than men’. A sky-high number when one is talking about differences in death rates and a colossal injustice if the information is reliable. But it’s not. ...
When Wangari Maathai, a Kenyan known for her work in human rights and environmental conservation, including efforts to fight deforestation, won the Nobel Peace Prize last month, many took note that the Nobel Committee had evidently expanded its notion of “peace.” “Peace on earth depends on our ability to secure our living environment,” it proclaimed, seeming to embrace an extended concept of peace as “human security.” More probably, the committee intended to highlight scarcity of renewable natural resources as an important cause of war. Their statement, it is true, didn’t deal with that issue directly, but Maathai herself said that ...