Department of Political Science


Dr Melanie Garson 

Melanie Garson

Dr Melanie Garson

Teaching Fellow in Conflict Resolution and International Security


Melanie Garson has been based at the School of Political Science for the last six years teaching courses in conflict resolution and post-war development (PUBLG082), international security (POLS 7005A/B), governing divided societies (PUBLG065), and theories of international relations (POLS6010A/B).

Research Interests

Melanie’s research focuses on the role of reconciliation in stabilising peace agreements and the reversal of conflict psychologies in protracted identity conflicts.  She is particularly interested in the social-psychological dimensions of conflict and terrorism, processes of radicalisation and de-radicalisation, and soft approaches to counter-terrorism.  Her research primarily focuses on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Israeli-Arab conflicts, Bosnia and Northern Ireland. She also undertakes research examining social trust and cohesion in divided societies, as well as the negotiation and mediation of peace agreements.  Melanie has a special interest in innovative methods of teaching and is currently working on developing an imaginary scenario simulation to help teach about ethnic conflict and its management.


Melanie received her PhD from UCL and holds a Masters in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Medford, MA), specialising in conflict resolution and negotiation. She holds a BA (Hons.) in Oriental Studies from Girton College, Cambridge.  She also holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Law and is a solicitor under the Law Society of England and Wales.

Professional Career

Melanie has worked as a solicitor in the Dispute Resolution department of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, where she was a member of the Commercial Disputes Group with experience in Public International Law, International Arbitration, and International Corporate Investigations, as well as teaching mediation and negotiation techniques. She has also worked as Director of Development and New Programmes for the Centre for Jewish Arab Economic Development (Israel), Director of Communications for Peaceworks LLC (New York), as well as for the People-to-People department of the Economic Cooperation Foundation (Israel), and the Education Programmes Department for the United Nations Association of the USA (New York.)

Media Appearances

Recent media appearances include the BBC World News in response to the Nice terror attack, and BBC Radio 5’s Raising the Bar on international law.

Conference Papers and Presentations

Conflict Research Society, September 2017, Oxford

European Consortium of Political Researchers, September 2017, Oslo

Network of European Peace Scientists Annual Meeting, June 2017, Antwerp

International Studies Association, Annual Conference 2015, New Orleans.

European Network for Conflict Research (ENCoRe) Spring Meeting 2014, Istanbul


In Us We Trust? The Effect of Political Violence on Social Cohesion in Israel, 2003-2015, co-authored with Maya Hadar (under review).

Defying Gravity: Evaluating the vertical limits of rising reconciliation (under review).