Kelly M. Greenhill

Contact Info:
Tufts University
Dept. of Political Science
Packard Hall
Medford, MA 02155

Office: 617.627.5849
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Associate Professor and Director, International Relations Program

International Relations, Security Studies

Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2004


Kelly M. Greenhill's research focuses on foreign and defense policy; the politics of information; the use of military force; and what are frequently called "new security challenges," including civil wars, (counter-) insurgencies, the use of migration as a weapon, and international crime as a challenge to domestic governance. In addition to her Ph.D. from M.I.T., Greenhill holds an S.M. from M.I.T., a C.S.S. from Harvard University, and a B.A. (with distinction and highest honors) from the University of California at Berkeley. Outside of the Department, Greenhill serves as Research Fellow and as Chair of the Conflict, Security and Public Policy Working Group at Harvard University's Belfer Center and as Associate Editor of the journal International Security.

Greenhill is author of Weapons of Mass Migration: Forced Displacement, Coercion and Foreign Policy (Cornell Studies in Security Affairs), which won the 2011 International Studies Association's Best Book of the Year Award; and co-author and co-editor (with P. Andreas) of Sex, Drugs and Body Counts: The Politics of Numbers in Global Crime and Conflict (Cornell University Press); (with R. Art) of the eighth edition of The Use of Force: Military Power and International Politics (R&L); and (with P. Krause) of Coercion: The Power to Hurt in International Politics (Oxford University Press, in press). Her research has also appeared in a variety of other venues, including the journals International Security, International Studies Quarterly, Security Studies, Civil Wars, European Law Journal and International Migration; media outlets such as the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Foreign Affairs and the British Broadcasting Company; and in briefs prepared for argument before the U.S. Supreme Court and for use by other organs of the U.S. government. She is currently completing a new book, a cross-national study that explores why, when, and under what conditions, "extra-factual" sources of political information—such as rumors, conspiracy theories, myths and propaganda—materially influence the development and conduct of states' foreign and defense policies. The book is provisionally entitled Fear and Present Danger: Extra-factual Sources of Threat Conception and Proliferation.

Greenhill's research has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Social Science Research Council, the MacArthur Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, the Eisenhower Foundation and the Neubauer Foundation. In October 2017, it was announced that Greenhill was chosen as winner of the 2018 ISSS Emerging Scholar Award (to be bestowed in April 2018). Outside of academia, Greenhill has served as a consultant to the Ford Foundation, the World Bank and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR); as a defense program analyst for the U.S. Department of Defense; and as an economic policy intern in the Office of then Senator John F. Kerry. She sits on the editorial boards of Sage Publications and of the journals Security Studies, the Journal of Global Security Studies and the Texas National Security Review. Before coming to Tufts, Greenhill held pre- or post-doctoral fellowships at Harvard University's Olin Institute for Strategic Studies and Belfer Center, at Stanford University's Center for International Security and Cooperation, and at Columbia University's Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies.


PS61: Introduction to International Relations
PS142: Ethics and International Relations
PS165: US Foreign Policy
PS166: Causes of Modern Interstate War
PS170: Understanding Civil Wars: Internal Conflict and International Responses
PS176: Migration, Refugees, and Citizenship in a Globalized World
PS184: Better than the Truth: Extra-factual Information in International Politics