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University of California Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation

IGCC Welcomes Courtenay Conrad as Chair, Steering Committee

June 13, 2022
IGCC

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IGCC is pleased to welcome Courtenay Conrad as the new chair of the IGCC Steering Committee. An Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at UC Merced, Conrad succeeds T.J. Pempel, who served as chair beginning in 2008, and was the Jack M. Forcey Professor of Political Science at UC Berkeley until his retirement last year.

IGCC is pleased to welcome Courtenay Conrad as the new chair of the IGCC Steering Committee. An associate professor in the Department of Political Science at UC Merced, Conrad succeeds T.J. Pempel, who served as chair beginning in 2008, and was the Jack M. Forcey Professor of Political Science at UC Berkeley until his retirement last year.

“Not only was T.J. the longest-serving chair of the IGCC Steering Committee, he provided outstanding leadership during a turbulent period in IGCC’s history, which has been an invaluable contribution,” IGCC director Tai Ming Cheung said. “We are deeply in debt to T.J. and thank him for his steadfast support of IGCC. And we welcome Courtenay as the new steering committee chair and look forward to working with her as we take IGCC into a promising future.”

Conrad, a research affiliate with IGCC’s Future of Democracy initiative, studies political violence and human rights, and particularly how repressive agents make decisions in the face of domestic and international institutional constraints. She is also interested in international organizations, with a particular focus on legislative procedure in the United Nations. Her most recent work focuses on the effect of law on police violence in the United States and abroad.

Says Conrad: “The last few years have underscored how international factors—those related to conflict, to trade, to health—fundamentally shape and are shaped by domestic politics. IGCC amplifies the voices of scholars with international expertise that can inform policy at the California state and the U.S. national level. Serving on the IGCC Steering Committee is a particularly rewarding part of that process; there’s no better way to start solving critical problems related to conflict and cooperation than by supporting early-career scholars doing innovative research.”

The IGCC Steering Committee annually selects and awards grants to up to 14 dissertation fellows to support research across disciplines, in subjects ranging from cybersecurity, food security, and terrorism, to regional and great power relations, global environment and health cooperation, and nuclear nonproliferation. Since its inception, the dissertation fellowship program has provided fellowships to nearly 500 UC graduate students pursuing degrees across 35 disciplines and interdisciplinary programs.

Funding for the dissertation fellowship program originally came from programmatic and research initiatives that came out of the University of California Office of the President. During Pempel’s tenure, that funding was terminated and the dissertation fellowship program was put on ice. But IGCC was able to restore funding in the late 2010s, and Pempel helped to lead the revival of the program, “much to the relief of UC doctoral student community,” says Cheung.

“The fellowships are integral to IGCC’s efforts to foster the next generation of scholars addressing a range of key issues related to conflict and cooperation,” says Pempel. “They offer critical funding at a key juncture in the careers of aspiring academics. My tenure on the committee has allowed me to see many of our fellowship recipients already well-launched on promising careers.”

The IGCC Steering Committee is composed of faculty representatives from all ten UC campuses, and the Lawrence Livermore and Los Alamos National Laboratories. The chair is a non-voting member from one of the campuses. The group advises the IGCC director and research directors, serves as campus liaison, and awards IGCC fellowships and grants to students and faculty. Steering Committee members typically serve for two years.

Meet the IGCC Dissertation Fellows.