Public Engagement

I aim to make my academic research and knowledge accessible to wider policy and public audiences through public writing and media appearances, to engage with public debates, and to speak and act against injustice and for human rights.

In addition to writing and media appearances, I act as a country conditions expert providing briefs and testimony for Nicaraguan asylum seekers. If you are an attorney or representative for an asylum seeker and are looking for a country expert, please email me and I can also suggest other potential experts if I am unable to fulfill the role at that time.

Public Writing

2023. “Nicaragua’s Political Repression Will Continue Despite Prisoner Release,” Lawfare, 5 March.

2021. “Afghan Insurgents Are a Dead End: Rebuilding U.S. standing requires an end to backing militants abroad,” Foreign Policy, 23 November.

2021. “Why Nicaragua’s slide toward dictatorship is a concern for the region and the US, too,” The Conversation, 9 November. Republished by outlets including Houston Chronicle, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, New Haven Register, and San Antonio Express-News.

2021. “Mozambique’s Islamist insurgents are on the run. Integrating former rebel fighters could help usher in peace,” Washington Post Monkey Cage, 27 August.

2021. “To replace autocrats of Nicaragua, think beyond this fall’s election,” Los Angeles Times, 24 August, print page A11 (with Ryan Berg). Ungated version available here.

2021. “Ortega and Murillo’s Two-Level Game” / “El juego a dos niveles de Ortega y Murillo,” Latinoamérica21, 28 June. Republished by La Tercera (Chile), El Universal (Mexico), El Observador (Uruguay), and Folha de São Paulo (Brazil).

2021    “Statement of Concern About Increasing Political Repression in Nicaragua Ahead of the 2021 Elections / Carta abierta sobre la escalada de represión política en Nicaragua antes de las elecciones de 2021” (June 2021) [drafted and administered bilingual open letter signed by over 800 academics and researchers. Republished or covered in Confidencial (Nicaragua), La Prensa (Nicaragua), Boston Globe, and El País (Spain)]

2021. “The 2021 Elections and Uganda’s Crisis of Continuity,” Epicenter (Harvard Weatherhead Center for International Affairs), 31 March.

2020. “Two years after Nicaragua’s mass uprising started, why is Daniel Ortega still in power?Washington Post Monkey Cage, 1 May (with Mateo Jarquín).

2020. “Nicaragua is Stumbling into Coronavirus Disaster,” Foreign Policy, 17 April.

2019. “Violence is Sometimes the Answer: Protesters get slammed by critics whenever they use force. But for the state, it’s normalized,” Foreign Policy, 5 December. Discussed on the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s ‘The World Unpacked’ podcast.

2019. “Repression and Resilience in Nicaragua: How Daniel Ortega Weathered 2018 Storm…and What Comes Next,” ReVista: Harvard Review of Latin American Studies, 28 August (with Eric Mosinger).

2019. “Authoritarian Resilience: Why Bouteflika and Bashir Fell, but Ortega Remains,” Political Violence @ a Glance, 30 April.

2019. “Flying Blind in Crisis Time: The US Strategic and Human Foreign Policy Deficit,” Duck of Minerva, 28 February.

2019. “Resisting Democratic Erosion in Latin America and Beyond,” Political Violence @ a Glance, 15 January. Republished by LAC Perspectivas (Korbel School Latin America Center).

2018. “Aid and Diplomacy, Not Tear Gas: How to Address the Central American Migrant Crisis,” Duck of Minerva, 27 November. Republished by The Big Q (New Zealand).

2018. “Peacekeeping’s Perverse Effects: Bolsonaro and Brazil’s Remilitarized Politics,” Duck of Minerva, 16 October.

2018. “Repression, Regime Consolidation, and Latin America’s Authoritarian (Re)Turn,” Political Violence @ a Glance, 25 September.

2018. “In massive street protests, Nicaraguans are using Ortega’s revolutionary symbols against him,” Washington Post Monkey Cage, 14 May (with Yerling Aguilera and Eric Mosinger).

2018. “A New Nicaraguan Revolution? Understanding This Week’s Popular Protests?Political Violence @ a Glance, 3 May (with Eric Mosinger).

2018. “Nicaragua protests threaten an authoritarian regime that looked like it might never fall,” The Conversation, 2 May (with Eric Mosinger). Republished by outlets including PRI, San Francisco Chronicle, Pacific Standard, and San Antonio News-Express.

2016. “Hurricane Mary,” Roads and Kingdoms, 17 February. News story on the politics of informality, development, and destructive government clean-up efforts in Monrovia, Liberia, with photos by Ben Cleeton.

2015. “50 years ago today, American diplomats endorsed mass killings in Indonesia. Here’s what that means for today,” Washington Post Monkey Cage, 2 December.


2012. “Mozambique in 2011: Staying the Path.” IPRIS Lusophone Countries Bulletin: 2011 Review, February, 27-32.

2011. “Black gold or black hole? Oil and development in Timor Leste.” IPRIS Lusophone Countries Bulletin (ILCB) 24, October, 1-2.

2011. “Barracks and bombast: is Renamo’s rhetoric of militarization and partition a serious threat in Mozambique?IPRIS Viewpoints 72, August.

2011. “Biofuels, agricultural development, and food security in Mozambique.” ILCB 21, July, 2-3.

2011. “Timor Leste and the g7+: A new approach to the security and development aid nexus.” ILCB 18, April, 4-7.

2011. “Mozambique in 2010: Strength on the surface, but fissures emerging.” ILCB: 2010 Review, March, 25-29.

2010. “Mozambique and an African solution to the Zimbabwe stalemate.” IPRIS Viewpoints 14, May.

2010. “Using BRIC to build at sea: The Brazil-China aircraft carrier agreement and shifting naval power.” IPRIS Viewpoints 9, January.

2009. “Gaining Gratitude (and Ground) in Latin America: The Foreign Policy Effects of Brazil’s Honduran Houseguest.” IPRIS Viewpoints 7, November.

2009. “Mozambique’s Chissano: Seeking a solution in Madagascar.” IPRIS Viewpoints 4, September.

Media Appearances and Interviews

2023 La Presse (Canada, 11 February), Christian Science Monitor (14 February)

2022 Radio-Canada (14 March), NBC News (8 July)

2021     La Presse (12 June, 7 November), BBC World Service (14 June), Al Jazeera (12 July), Raport o Stanie Świata (Poland, 27 August), Background Briefing (KPFK-Los Angeles nationally-syndicated public radio program, 7 September), 95bFM (New Zealand, 12 November)

2020    Infobae (Argentina, 19 January), CQ Researcher (5 March), La Presse (21 April), The World Unpacked podcast (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 30 April), Hanoi Philosophy Forum (3 June)

2019    Radio-Canada (3 May)

2018    BBC World News Today (3 June), France24 (17 July), Gazeta do Povo (Brazil, 27 July, 5 December)