I am an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Texas at Dallas and the co-Director of the Social Conflict in Africa Database project. I am also affiliated with the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law at UT Austin, the International Peace Research Institute, Oslo, and the John Goodwin Tower Center for Political Studies at Southern Methodist University.
My research interests are diverse, but most of the time I focus on topics related to international & civil conflict, international migration, and politics & the environment. In addition, I teach courses on international relations, civil war, ethnic politics, and the politics of immigration.
I am the author of, Rebels Without Borders: Transnational Insurgencies in World Politics (Cornell University Press, 2009). My articles appear in journals such as: the American Journal of Political Science, International Organization, International Studies Quarterly, the Journal of Conflict Resolution, the Journal of Peace Research, the Journal of Politics, and World Politics.
I grew up in California and received my PhD from UC San Diego in 2006. Now, The Colony, Texas is my home.
Rebels Without Borders: Transnational Insurgencies in World Politics
Rebellion, insurgency, civil war-conflict within a society is customarily treated as a matter of domestic politics and analysts generally focus their attention on local causes. Yet fighting between governments and opposition groups is rarely confined to the domestic arena. "Internal" wars often spill across national boundaries, rebel organizations frequently find sanctuaries in neighboring countries, and insurgencies give rise to disputes between states.
In Rebels without Borders, which will appeal to students of international and civil war and those developing policies to contain the regional diffusion of conflict, Idean Salehyan examines transnational rebel organizations in civil conflicts, utilizing cross-national datasets as well as in-depth case studies. He shows how external Contra bases in Honduras and Costa Rica facilitated the Nicaraguan civil war and how the Rwandan civil war spilled over into the Democratic Republic of the Congo, fostering a regional war. He also looks at other cross-border insurgencies, such as those of the Kurdish PKK and Taliban fighters in Pakistan. Salehyan reveals that external sanctuaries feature in the political history of more than half of the world's armed insurgencies since 1945, and are also important in fostering state-to-state conflicts.