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Political Science Department

Asst. Professor Janet I. Lewis

Dr. Lewis’ teaching and research focuses on world politics, armed conflict, and development, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa.  She earned her Ph.D. in 2012 from Harvard University.

Dr. Lewis' current book project examines the initial stages of rebel group formation, including why only some nascent groups become viable challengers to central governments.  Data collection for the project involved fieldwork throughout Uganda, including extensive interviews with former aspiring insurgents and counterinsurgents, as well as villagers who lived among them, in regions bordering DRC, Kenya, and South Sudan.

This project builds on her Ph.D. dissertation, which was honored with the Harvard Government Department’s Edward Sumner prize as well as the discipline’s top African Politics dissertation award. Her research has been published at the American Journal of Political Science, the American Political Science Review, and Comparative Political Studies. It has been supported by NSF, the Minerva Research Initiative, the U.S. Institute of Peace, the Smith Richardson Foundation, the H.F. Guggenheim Foundation, and others.

She has also conducted research on U.S. stability operations, fragile states, and terrorist financing, respectively, for the RAND Corporation, the Brookings Institution, and the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Personal website


FP 471D: Ethnic Politics and Conflict in Developing Countries

FP 366: Politics in Africa

FP 230: Introduction to Comparative Politics

FP 210: Introduction to International Relations

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