Ches Thurber

PhD Candidate


I am a Ph.D. candidate in international relations at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and an Adjunct Lecturer in Political Science at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, where I teach courses in International Relations, Security Studies, and Political Methodology. My research focuses on international security and Middle East politics with a particular emphasis on the spectrum of intra-state conflict from civil resistance to civil war. My dissertation examines factors affecting resistance movements’ usage of violent and non-violent strategies. I am also involved in a joint project between The Fletcher School and MIT’s Lincoln Laboratories to assess the future of international space policy and governance. Previously, I worked as a policy aide in the Vermont General Assembly and in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Awards, Fellowships, and Grants
  • Eisenhower Foundation Clifford Roberts Fellowship (2012-2013)
  • Bradley Foundation Ph.D. Dissertation Fellowship (2010-2011)
  • John Moors Cabot Scholar (2009-2010)
  • American Academy of Diplomacy Leonard Marks Essay Contest Winner (2009)
  • Southwest Asia Program Summer Work and Research Fellowship (2009)
  • Kathryn Davis Fellowship for Peace, Middlebury College (Declined 2009)

Fields of Study
  • International Security Studies
  • Southwest Asia & Islamic Civilization

• “A Step Short of the Bomb: Explaining the Strategy of Nuclear Hedging” in Journal of Public and International Affairs (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)

PhD Dissertation
  • Strategies of Violence and Nonviolence in Revolutionary Movements

Faculty Advisor(s)
• Erica Chenoweth (Univ. of Denver)
• Richard Shultz (chair)
• Zeynep Bulutgil

Teaching Experience
  • Lecturer in Political Science, University of Alaska Fairbanks: International Politics; Political Science Research Methods; Peace, War, and Security; Political Economy
  • Teaching Assistant, Tufts University: Introduction to International Relations, Processes of International Negotiations