About Mareike Schomerus
Drawing connections between different areas of research, uncovering what invisible factors shape today’s complex challenges, or how we think about solutions is exciting to me. I want to find ways to unpack, through research, the many layers of human emotions, memories, experiences and actions—what I call the ‘mental landscape’— and then apply these insights. That can only work through genuine collaborations with implementing actors with the to improve how policies can equitably support people from different backgrounds and walks of life and facilitate needed systemic change towards fairer societies. In my current position as Vice President at Busara, I am lucky to be working with people who bring unique perspectives into these and other debates on the most important questions humans are facing today. My work seeks to better understand challenges in governance, fragility and violent conflict by including behavioral science in analysis and implementation and thinking on how to more generally transform development engagement in situations of violence conflict or its aftermath.
Formerly, I was Director of Programme Politics and Governance at ODI in London, and Research Director of the Secure Livelihoods Research Consortium (SLRC), also at ODI. My writing focuses on violent conflict, political contestation (including through violent or political extremism), peace processes in South Sudan and Uganda and across borders, and can be found in academic journals, as advisory reports for international organisations, in my books.
I am a member of the African Borderlands Research Network (ABORNE) and the Conflict Research Society (CRS), and received a PhD from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Occasionally, I teach at the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy.