Faculty and Fellows

Program Directors

Daniel Brumberg

Dr. Daniel Brumberg is an associate Professor of Government at Georgetown University and director of the M.A. Program in Democracy and Governance. He is also the Senior Program Officer at the Center for Conflict Management at the United States Institute of Peace, where he focuses on issues of democratization and political reform in the Middle East and wider Islamic world.

Elton Skendaj

Dr. Elton Skendaj is the Associate Director of the Democracy and Governance Program and Assistant Teaching Professor in the Government Department at Georgetown University. His teaching and research focus on strengthening democracy and governance in diverse contexts. Specifically, he investigates how domestic and international partners can strengthen democratic institutions, foster active public engagement, uphold the rule of law, reduce corruption, and use nonviolent means to prevent and resolve conflicts.

Dr. Brumberg is a former senior associate in the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s Democracy and Rule of Law Project (2003-04). Previously, he was a Jennings Randolph senior fellow at USIP, where he pursued a study of power sharing in the Middle East and Southeast Asia. In addition, Dr. Brumberg was a Mellon junior fellow at Georgetown University, a visiting fellow at the International Forum on Democratic Studies, visiting professor in the Department of Political Science at Emory University, and a visiting fellow in the Middle East Program in the Jimmy Carter Center. He has also taught at the University of Chicago. 

A member of the editorial board of the Journal of Democracy and the advisory board of the International Forum on Democratic Studies, Dr. Brumberg is chairman of the nonprofit Foundation on Democratization and Political Change in the Middle East. He has worked closely with a number of nongovernmental organizations in the Arab world, including the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs. Dr. Brumberg has served as an advisor to the American Academy of Arts and Science’s “Fundamentalism Project,” the Global Democracy Program of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the National Democratic Institute (NDI). He was a member of the NDI-Carter Center Palestinian Election Observer Delegation in January 1996, and the NDI-Carter Center Indonesian Election Observer Delegation in June 1999. He also worked closely with a number of NGO’s in the Arab world, including the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs (PASSIA). Dr. Brumberg is a member of the editorial board of the American Political Science Association’s Political Science and Politics.

He received his B.A. from Indiana University and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.


Prior to joining the Democracy and Governance program at Georgetown, Dr. Skendaj served as the inaugural Gladdys Muir Professor of Peace Studies at Manchester University in Indiana. He also previously taught in Comparative Politics and International Relations at the University of Miami, Florida International University, and the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Tirana, Albania. He was a Visiting Fellow at the University of Notre Dame Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and a Research Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Outside of his academic role, Dr. Skendaj has provided leadership and technical expertise on practitioner projects with the United Nations, U.S. Institute for Peace, Hague Appeal for Peace, Westminster Foundation for Democracy, and the Open Society Institute. He has also served as an analyst for Freedom House and as President of the Society for Albanian Studies.

His first book, Creating Kosovo: International Oversight and the Making of Ethical Institutions (Cornell University Press and Wilson Center Press, 2014) examines the role of international actors in building effective state bureaucracies and democratic institutions in postwar Kosovo. His subsequent research on democratization, civil society mobilization, security sector reform, legal transfers, and anti-corruption policies in the Western Balkans has been published in peer-reviewed journals such as Global Governance, Problems of Postcommunism, and Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding.

Dr. Skendaj holds a BA in Political Science from American University in Bulgaria, an MA in International Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame, and a Ph.D. in Government from Cornell University.

Rick Ferreira

Rick holds an MA from Georgetown’s Democracy and Governance program. He maintains an academic specialization in theories of corruption and authoritarian resilience. Rick previously worked as the Executive Director for the Coalition for Dialogue and Negotiations, where he served as an advocate for a peaceful resolution to the Cameroonian Civil War. He is an avid tabletop gamer and helps to run a local wargaming club.

Affiliated Faculty

Brian Joseph is Vice President for Programs at the National Endowment for Democracy, a Congressionally-funded nonprofit grant-making organization.  He has over 25 years of experience working to advance democracy and human rights.  As Vice President, Brian leads the Endowment’s global grants program, which annually provides over $265m in grants to more than 1,700 organizations worldwide annually.  His responsibilities include management of the seven program departments, a newly established emergency response team, and program and operational security. Prior to assuming his current job, Brian served as the Senior Director for Asia and Global Programs at the Endowment for eight years. 

Brian has spoken and written widely about democracy promotion in closed societies, democratic unity, independent media, Tibet, Burma, Pakistan, Thailand, and human rights in Asia.  His areas of interest include strategic planning, evaluation, philanthropy, opposition movements, independent media, and minority rights.  He appears regularly in the media, including on the PBS NewsHour, the Diane Rehm Show, The World, CNN and Aljazeera and his articles have been published in the Journal of Democracy, The Chronicle Review, The International Herald Tribune, and the SAIS Review. 

Brian has testified before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations’ Subcommittee on East Asia and Pacific Affairs, the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, and the Canadian Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs and International trade, provided high-level briefings for State Department officials, and lectured at the Foreign Service Institute. He has also participated in pre-assessment and election monitoring missions in South Asia and the Middle East. Brian formerly served as co-convener of the Burma Donors’ Forum, a volunteer South Asia regional coordinator for Amnesty International USA, and a member of the International Human Rights Funders’ Group. He earned a BA in History from Colorado College and an MA in South Asian Studies from the University of Wisconsin–Madison

Georges A. Fauriol is on the adjunct faculty of Georgetown University’s Democracy and Governance Graduate Program. He is also a Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS), a Fellow with the Caribbean Policy Consortium (CPC), and a Think Tank Haiti (TTH) Steering Group member, a partnership of Université Quisqueya (Haiti) and the Inter-American Dialogue. Fauriol retired in 2020 as Vice president, Grants Operations and Evaluation at the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), and served (2002-10) as Vice President of Strategic Planning, and Senior Vice President at one of NED’s implementing institutes, the International Republican Institute (IRI). Prior to 2001, Fauriol held a number of positions at CSIS, notably after 1992 as director and senior fellow of the Americas Program, and previously was also the assistant to the chairman of the Center’s Board of Trustees. Earlier, Fauriol worked at the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia. He has extensive international and cross-regional field experience, including election-related missions in Eurasia, Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and Central America. He is widely published, including Foreign Affairs, Polity and other journals, on Caribbean Basin politics, US foreign and security policy in the region, and more broadly, democratization dynamics. He has testified several times before US Congressional committees. Fauriol holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania.

Olivia Enos is an Adjunct Professor in the Democracy and Governance Program at Georgetown University. She is also a Senior Policy Analyst in the Asian Studies Center at The Heritage Foundation where she focuses on the intersection of human rights and national security issues at Georgetown. Her work covers a broad range of issues affecting China, North Korea, Burma, and Cambodia, and spans democracy and governance, religious freedom, refugees, and other social issues in Asia. 
Enos has testified several times before Congress on human rights challenges in Asia and briefed senior executive branch officials and members of Congress. Her commentary has appeared in The New York TimesThe Wall Street JournalThe Washington PostForeign Policy, and a host of other nationally-syndicated publications. She has also interviewed with CNN, the BBC, Fox News, and other news outlets. In addition to her commentary in other outlets, Enos has a column in Forbes.
Enos graduated with her BA in Government from Patrick Henry College and an MA in Asian Studies from Georgetown University.

Jeff Fischer has held three election directorships in internationally supervised elections where electoral security was one of his responsibilities. In 1996, he was appointed by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to serve as Director General of Elections for the first post-conflict elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 1999, Mr. Fischer was appointed by the United Nations (UN) as Chief Electoral Officer for the Popular Consultation for East Timor. And, in 2000, Mr. Fischer received a joint appointment from the UN and OSCE to head the Joint Registration Taskforce in Kosovo and served as the OSCE’s Director of Election Operations for municipal elections held that year. He has also served as an election official in the United States as a Commissioner with the Kansas City Board of Elections (1985 – 1990) and a Commissioner on the Missouri Political Finance Review Commission (1991 – 1992). Mr. Fischer also served as a Senior Advisor to the Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan and the UN for its audit of the 2014 presidential election results; and as a member of the Experts Verification Commission of the Organization of Americans States (OAS), auditing the results of the 2010 presidential election in Haiti.
Mr. Fischer served as a Senior Electoral Advisor for Creative Associates International; in various
capacities with the International Foundation for Electoral Systems including as its first Executive Vice
President (1993 – 2006); and as an expert consultant with such international organizations and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), International IDEA, Westminster Foundation for Democracy, and the OAS. Fischer teaches graduate-level courses in the Democracy and Governance Program at Georgetown University on International Electoral Policy and Practice and has also established Electoral Policy Study Group in cooperation with USAID where Georgetown students research policy issues for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Mr. Fischer has been a Visiting Lecturer at the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University, teaching a Policy Workshop on Managing Elections in Fragile States (2007 – 2010, 2014, 2016, 2019) and Elections and Conflict in Sub-Saharan Africa (2012), and Digital Disruption of Elections (2021). He is a Senior Advisor to the Sant ’Anna School of Advanced Studies and its on-line Master in Electoral Policy and Administration (MEPA). For MEPA, Mr. Fischer developed the courses on Elections and Voting as Instruments of Governance and Electoral Security and Conflict Prevention. He also serves as a dissertation supervisor for the students.

Alysson Akiko Oakley (PhD) is the Director for Results and Measurement at Pact. She is an experienced practitioner in the fields of international development, governance, and democratization, and specialized in improving program strategy and demonstrating impact. She has a professional and academic track record in bringing analytical rigor to address complex, real world challenges in new democracies and fragile states. Dr. Oakley completed her PhD at Johns Hopkins University in 2018, graduating with distinction. Previously, she served as Senior Adviser for Monitoring and Evaluation at the International Republican Institute (IRI) and Director of Programs at the U.S.-Indonesia Society (USINDO). She acted as a principal Asia-Pacific analyst for Freedom House’s flagship publication Freedom in the World, authoring multiple Southeast Asia country reports from 2009 to 2017. Dr. Oakley has consulted for numerous agencies, think tanks, and NGOs, on topics ranging from political risk to program innovation. She has also been an adjunct professor at Georgetown University for many years. A specialist practitioner in political development and M&E, she has been based professionally in Southeast Asia, Europe, and Washington, DC. She has traveled extensively for project and research purposes to Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East. She holds a Master of Arts degree (MA) in International Relations from Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and a Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) from Brown University.

Patrick W. Quirk, Ph.D., is Senior Director of the Center for Global Impact at the International Republican Institute (IRI) and a Nonresident Fellow in the Foreign Policy program at the Brookings Institution. Previously, he served on the U.S. Secretary of State’s Policy Planning (S/P) staff in the Department of State as the lead advisor for fragile states, conflict and stabilization, and foreign assistance. In this capacity, he regularly provided independent policy analysis to the Secretary on these themes. From 2018-19, he conceptualized, and managed the process to advance, the new U.S. approach to fragile states.


Prior to Policy Planning, he served in State’s Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO) as senior advisor for policy and strategy. In this capacity, he was the chief political scientist for, and a lead author of, the 2018 Stabilization Assistance Review; led the team that conceptualized and institutionalized CSO’s approach to mitigate conflict surrounding high-priority elections and political transitions; and deployed to Myanmar, Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, and Tunisia to work on conflict prevention efforts. From 2017-18, he was a nonresident Penn Kemble fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy.

Prior to government service, Quirk was a research fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Prior to GMF, he was a senior manager at Creative Associates International, where he led risk assessments for the U.S. government, managed democracy assistance and conflict prevention programs in East Africa and the Middle East, and was responsible for business development.

Quirk is an adjunct professor at Georgetown University, teaching courses on stabilization and political violence. His book, “Great Powers, Weak States, and Insurgency: Explaining Internal Threat Alliances,” was published in 2017. He also co-authored USAID’s “Best Practices in Electoral Security, a Guide for Democracy, Human Rights and Governance Programming” and is the lead author of CSO’s “Electoral Violence Assessment Framework” assessment methodology. Quirk earned a bachelor’s in history from Bates College and a doctorate in political science from Johns Hopkins University.

Meir Walters received his Ph.D. in Government from Georgetown University in 2016. His research interests include life under authoritarianism, Middle East politics, protest movements, censorship, mass media, and the impact of external actors on domestic politics in the developing world. Dr. Walters’ dissertation studied the politics of state-managed media and cultural production under authoritarianism, drawing on years of fieldwork in the Middle East and North Africa. From 2012-2103, he was a Fulbright fellow in Egypt and a fellow at the Center for Arabic Study Abroad (CASA) at the American University in Cairo. Dr. Walters’ research is published in journals including Perspectives on Politics, Conflict Management and Peace Science, Middle East Policy, and The Journal of North African Studies.

Currently, Dr. Walters is a Foreign Affairs Officer in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor’s (DRL) Office of Near Eastern Affair at the U.S. Department of State with a portfolio covering Iran and the Arabian Peninsula. He has also worked on European defense policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

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