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     Visiting Scholars

Dr. Ozlem Arpac Arconian
School of Oriental and African Studies
University of London

Crisis and Transformations: A comparative political economy study of Turkey and Greece

Ozlem Arconian is Lecturer in Economics, September 2009 to date in the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. She holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Surrey (2007) with a dissertation titled “The Implementation of IMF-supported Programmes: An Empirical Investigation Using Complementary Methodologies." Her fields of specialization include international finance and development, the effectiveness of IMF and World Bank assisted programs, the political economy of reform in developing countries, and discrete choice econometrics, with teaching interests in macroeconomics, development economics, and applied econometrics. Her current research project involves a comparative political economy study of Turkey and Greece in the context of economic crises and corruption, including research on Turkey's graduation from the IMF and the country’s transitioning from dominance of the Washington Consensus toward what might be called ‘Istanbul Decisions’.

Dr. Arconian has been an external reviewer (2010-2011) for the Systematic Review Program, Department for International Development (DFID) in the UK, and for the Open Window Grant Program of the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie). She has served as an economist in Emerging Markets Research at the Dresdner Kleinwort Investment Bank, London (2007-2009) responsible for coordinating emerging markets reference databases and developing models of relevance to emerging markets macroeconomics, and producing high frequency research on emerging market economies including Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, with a particular emphasis on Turkey. In 2006 she worked as Economist for the International Monetary Fund, in Washington D.C. in the Fund Internship Program, Independent Evaluation Office.



Roland Benedikter
European Foundation Fellow

Roland Benedikter, Dott. Dr. Dr. Dr., born 1965, is European Foundation Fellow 2009-13, in residence at the Orfalea Center for Global and International Studies as a Visiting Scholar with duties as the Foundation's Research Professor of Political Sociology, and Visiting Scholar 2009-10 at the Forum on Contemporary Europe of Stanford University. He is co-author of Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker's "Report to the Club of Rome" 2003 (all three versions: English, German and Chinese), has edited and co-authored 14 books, published more than 100 essays in specialized international journals, and is author and editor of the book series "Transdisciplinary Studies on Contemporary Societies" (since 2005). Roland is currently working on two books: One about the "Global Systemic Shift. The 'three endings' of our epoch and their perspectives" and a book about the "Cultural Psychology of 'the West'. Paradigms and Politics in the USA and Europe at the start of the era Barack Obama". Through both projects he also engages in European policy advice. Roland's previous teaching and research engagements include Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Turkey, Bulgaria, the US, the UK, Australia, and Peru.

Orfalea Center visiting research scholar Dr. Roland Benedikter has won the Klaus Reichert Award for Medical Philosophy 2012. The award is given by the Center for Medical Philosophy in Karlsruhe, Germany, and has been awarded to Benedikter in recognition of his work in global medical ethics and his engagement with issues at the intersection of contemporary politics, sociology, ethics, and medicine in more than a dozen publications on the globalization of medicine. In particular, the award recognizes Benedikter's contributions to re-humanizing contemporary thought and international debate around the question of the future of the human being in times of "transhumanism" and "hyper-technologization." The Reichert Award is the most highly regarded academic award of its kind in Germany and is Benedikter's 5th scientific award. The award ceremony was held on October 6, 2012 in Karlsruhe.

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Ole Bruun
Department of Society and Globalization, Roskilde University
'Confucian/Chinese challenges to the international environmental regime'

Ole Bruun is Associate professor at Institute of International Development Studies, Roskilde University in Denmark. He received his Ph.D in anthropology from the University of Copenhagen 1990, and has held visiting scholar, research and teaching positions at the University of California, Berkeley, the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies, the University of Gothenborg, and the University of Copenhagen.

The aims for this research appointment focus on a frame-setting article and the start of a book manuscript during the spring term 2013 around the general theme of Confucian/Chinese challenges to the international environmental regime. The project explores how Chinese attitudes to nature may begin to impact environmental management and resource uses outside China, thus potentially altering the existing balancing of interests both nationally and globally. In the early phase it will consist of broad, exploratory and conceptual work, drawing from religious, social science, and Chinese studies. Eventually the research program will examine how these structures and trends, to the extent that they are consistent and generalizable, are playing out in China's rising engagement with the world, either through personal, corporate, or state engagement. Examples from Southeast Asia and Africa may be included and involve resource extraction, trade in natural substances, forestry practices, plantations, and national parks, as well the general impact on environmental discourses and policy processes. Dr. Bruun has previously worked on a range of issues relating to Chinese and East Asian culture, perceptions of nature and environment, and popular religion. Related research projects have looked at Fengshui and the Chinese perception of nature; at nomadic pastoralism and social strategies in Mongolia focusing on the changing economic, social and cultural conditions for the nomadic herding population after the breakup of the socialist collective; at the waning of modernity in China in terms of the crisis of development and the contribution of new social mobilizations to new institutions in rural China (2007-2008), and most recently (2009-2012) a project on socio-economic impacts of climate change and adaptation in Central Vietnam.




Manuél Ruben Domínguez Mena
University of Salamanca, Spain
‘Participation 3.0: The Protester and Online Contention’

Ruben Dominguez is completing PhD research in Contemporary Political Processes (Political Science) at the University of Salamanca (USAL), Spain. He also holds Masters degrees in Politic Science, in Governance and Constitutional Systems, and in Business Administration, as well as diplomas in psychological typology, in public relations, communication & protocol, and in public policy. He has been active in a variety of political consulting positions, including most recently as a political and technological management consultant for various state and municipal governments in Mexico.

The main objective of this research project is to trace the role of mobility and portability of information, communication, and socialization mechanisms in the transformation of social movements’ behavior. The evolution of media and technological tools in these domains has modified the way social movements develop and the behavior of their participants; for example, the migration of social movements into the digital ecosystem brings forth the figure of the hacktivist. The massive use of smartphones and tablets has enhanced the mobility of information, communication, and socialization processes and presents worldwide the opportunity to work online with portable bidirectional data, simplifying political interactions and information flows. The study’s principal hypothesis is that viral expansion of political contents and interactions generate an acceleration, amplification, and diversification of social movements. Besides describing the role of information, communication, and socialization portability in the transformation of social movements, the project also aims to explain the process of evolution from the protester to the hacktivist, to clarify and explain new terms into the vocabulary of social movements that arise with the fusion of politics and technology, to build variables and indicators that allow detection of changes in the mechanisms of contention.




Steven Nalevansky
Film and Television Developer/Producer

Globalization and the Media

Mr. Nalevansky is president of Sheffield Exit Media, a diversified company devoted to motion picture and television development and production. Prior to setting up Sheffield Exit Media, he was Head of Programming and Production for KingWorld/CBS Productions, recently merging with Paramount Domestic TV to become CBS Distribution. Nalevansky was in charge of “Inside Edition” and all aspects of the daytime talk show, “Rosanne.” Previously, Mr. Nalevansky spent several years as the chief development executive (Senior Vice President of Creative Affairs) at Paramount Domestic Television. He has developed or overseen numerous scripted programs and productions, co-produced and co-written programs for network and cable media, and produced two feature films.

Mr. Nalevansky is a native of Los Angeles, where he attended UCLA and Loyola School of Law. He is a former Legal Aid Foundation trial attorney and also served as Director of the Family Law Center. In the mid-70’s, Steven was assistant professor of Legal Studies and Political Science at Pepperdine University, Los Angeles. He established the Legal Studies degree, training students as legal assistants, the first such program west of the Mississippi. Nalevansky also served as president of the Pepperdine Faculty.

Steven has also taught at UCLA Extension, and is an annual lecturer at the University of Southern California. He has taught winter seminars for seven years as a Visiting Faculty professor at UCSB’s Global & International Studies program. His seminar is titled “Globalization and the Media,” which is the general rubric of Steven’s research at the Orfalea Center.



Anne-Marie Oliver

Ravi K. Roy

Ravi Roy is the Associate Director of Public Sector Programs at California State University, Northridge. Prior to this, he was the Director of the Masters Program in International Development in the School of Global Studies at RMIT University in Melbourne Australia. He has taught extensively in the areas of Global Studies, International Political Economy, International Development, Public Management, Public Administration and Public Policy.

His past and current research involves a cross-section of these fields. Ravi's research focus has sought to explore how the work on 'Shared Mental Models' could suggest dynamic and innovative possibilities for building bridges across the so called "rationalist-constructivist" divide in the social sciences and beyond.

Ravi has written or co-written three books and was the lead editor on a fourth focused on the role of ideas and mental models in shaping people's discrete understandings of the choices available to them and how these in turn, informs their various policy preferences:

Neoliberalism: a very short introduction, with Manfred B. Steger (Oxford university Press, 2010.); The New Right to The Third Way: Economic Policy at the White House and Whitehall 1979-2000 (Claremont: Regina Press, 2010); Neoliberalism: National and regional experiments with global ideas, with Arthur T. Denzau and Thomas D. Willett, eds., (Economics Division, Routledge Press, 2007); Fiscal Policy Convergence from Reagan to Blair: The Left Veers Right, with Arthur T. Denzau, (Economics Division, Routledge Press, 2004).



Richard Widdick

Richard Widick

Richard Widick holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he lectured on theory, culture, media, globalization, social movements and environment before coming to the Orfalea Center. He is the author of Trouble in the Forest: California's Redwood Timber Wars (University of Minnesota Press, 2009), an ethnography, cultural analysis, and 150 year social history of the US colonization and industrialization of California's northern redwood region?a history of the Indian wars and labor trouble that set the legal, social and ecological conditions for converging peoples, labor and environmental movements in the present era of globalization. In new research aimed at further integrating global studies and cultural sociology with media and environmental theory, Widick scales up his institutional analysis of US culture to the international scene of western modernity and the UN climate negotiations. In preparation of a new manuscript?The International Climate Wars?he has conducted fieldwork with collaborator John Foran (sociology, UCSB) at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of Parties 17 (COP17), in Durban, South Africa, 2011, and will attend the upcoming COP18 at Doha, Qatar, in the fall of 2012. Widick and Foran are founders and co-directors of The International Institute of Climate Action & Theory (iicat), and publicize their climate-related work at iicat.org.

Contact Richard at richard.widick@orfaleacenter.ucsb.edu.





Reza Aslan
Reza Aslan
UC Riverside


Born in Iran, Reza Aslan, an internationally acclaimed writer and scholar of religions, is a fellow at the University of Southern California's Center on Public Diplomacy, Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at University of California, Riverside, and a Middle East Analyst for CBS News.He has degrees in Religion from Santa Clara University, Harvard University, and the University of California, Santa Barbara, as well as a Master's degree of Fine Arts from the University of Iowa, where he was named the Truman Capote Fellow in Fiction.

He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities, and the Pacific Council on International Policy. He serves on the board of directors for both the Ploughshares Fund and PEN USA.

Aslan's first book is the New York Times Bestselling, No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam, which has been translated into half a dozen languages, short-listed for the Guardian (UK) First Book Award, and was nominated for a PEN USA award for research non-fiction. His next book, How to Win a Cosmic War will be published by Random House in the Fall 2008, followed by an edited anthology, Words Without Borders: Contemporary Literature from the Muslim World, which will be published by Norton in the Spring of 2009.

Aslan is Co-Founder and Creative Director of BoomGen Studios and the Editorial Executive of Mecca.com, an on-line community for Muslim youth.



Sophie Cheetham
University of Leeds, UK


Sophie Cheetham works on the social and economic impact of HIV/AIDS on children and young adults in South Africa. She graduated from the University of Leeds, England, in July 2006, in the field of International Development. She has completed field research in South Africa on an HIV/AIDS education and is now working with an assistance program in the Cape winelands district. The programme will provide care and assistance for those who are living with HIV/AIDS in the rural and urban areas of Cape Town, specifically children and young adults. While with the Orfalea Center, Sophie plans to complete the written report on the South African HIV/AIDS assistance project.



Steve Eskow
Steve Eskow
Pangaea Network (Africa), and Engineers Without Borders


Steve Eskow is president of both Pangaea Network and Electronic University Network. He earned a Bachelor of Arts at the University of California at Berkeley, a Master of Arts at Columbia University and a Doctor of Philosophy at Syracuse University. As a 20-year community college president, Eskow has helped bring international education opportunities and distance learning to thousands of students. As President of The Electronic University Network, he pioneered in helping other colleges and universities harness the teaching power of the Internet and World Wide Web. Eskow's success in driving new educational ventures has been the subject of numerous articles and dissertations. During his tenure as President of Rockland Community College of The State University of New York, the college grew from 135 students to become a major force in New York and a leader in nontraditional and international education. He was the founder and first president of The College Consortium of International Studies (CCIS), a federation that now has 95 college members and sends some 4000 students abroad each year to 35 countries; and he was the founding president of The International Partnership for Service Learning, a federation of colleges that sends students to serve in community service agencies in several countries. A frequent speaker at educational seminars and conventions, Eskow is a recognized leader of distance learning programs, having directed several national conferences and workshops on the virtual campus, distance learning and online training. In addition, he has written more than 50 articles, chapters and monographs on the virtual campus, corporate/college partnerships, distance learning, corporate training and international education.



Katsuhiro Kohara
Katsuhiro Kohara
Professor of Systematic Theology
Doshisha University, Kyoto, Japan

Professor of Systematic Theology, Doshisha University, Kyoto, Japan, Dr. Kohara is also an ordained pastor (United Church of Christ, Japan). He is deputy director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Study of Monotheistic Religions at Doshisha University and is secretary general of the Kyoto Graduate Union of Religious Studies.

Dr. Kohara’s current project is entitled “Comparative Study of Religious Policies in the Post-secular Age: Focusing on Religious Freedom and the Separation between Religion and Politics in Global Society.” The purpose of this research is to examine changes in modern society, which cannot be described simply by means of the dichotomous concepts of “secular” versus “religious,” in terms of the idea of “post-secularism.” It will develop a theoretical framework for such changes, while analyzing some specific cases as well as the policy measures taken to address these cases. In this process, special attention will be paid to “religious freedom” and “the separation of religion and politics” as indices that characterize various national policy measures taken by different countries. However, the concepts of both religious freedom and the separation of religion and politics have their ideological roots in the modern West. Accordingly, how such concepts are accepted or rejected in the non-Western world will be carefully considered. Specifically, the research will try to shed light on the importance of post-secularism research for the non-Western society by examining the situations of China and Iran, which have often reacted against the concepts of Western-style (or more specifically, American-style) religious freedom and the separation of religion and politics.



Peter Lance
Peter Lance
Independent Journalist

The 9/11 Investigation

Peter Lance is an Emmy-winning investigative reporter, screenwriter and novelist. With an M.S. from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and a J.D. from Fordham University School of Law, Lance spent the first 15 years of his career as a print reporter and network correspondent: first with the Newport, R.I. Daily News, then at WNET, the PBS flagship in New York, where he won his first N.Y area Emmy and the Ohio State Award as a producer-reporter for Channel 13's news magazine THE 51ST STATE.

While getting his law degree, Lance worked as a Trial Preparation Assistant in the office of the District Attorney for New York County. Moving to ABC News as a field producer in 1978, Lance won an Emmy in 1980 for his investigation of an arson-for-profit ring in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago. In 1981 Lance became Investigative Correspondent for ABC News. For his very first piece on 20/20, Lance won an Emmy for “Unnecessary Surgery,” an exposé on an Arkansas hospital. Over the next five years he covered hundreds of stories worldwide for ABC NEWS 20/20, NIGHTLINE, and WORLD NEWS TONIGHT. He was a member of the first American crew into Indochina after the end of the Vietnam War and he did a six-month investigation of the importation of nuclear waste to the U.S. from a series of research reactors in Europe.

In 1987, Lance took a break from non-fiction and began writing for a series of acclaimed dramatic television programs including CRIME STORY, MIAMI VICE and JAG. In 1997, Lance's novel First Degree Burn became a national bestseller. For HBO he later adapted Veil: The Secret Wars of the CIA, Bob Woodward's book on the Iran-Contra scandal which Lance had covered for ABC. Following the 9/11 attacks, Lance returned to investigative journalism. His HarperCollins trilogy 1000 Years for Revenge, Cover Up, and Triple Cross represents the only critical analysis by a mainstream journalist of the two bin Laden offices of origin: the FBI's New York Office and the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY).

Lance is now at work on a fourth book in the series and his recent investigative work has led the NYPD to re-open a notorious al Qaeda related homicide case that has been unsolved since 1991. He lectures frequently on the growth of radical Islam and its strategic importance to global security.



Barbara Lüthi
University of Basel, Switzerland


Barbara Lüthi received her Ph.D. in history from the University of Basel, Switzerland in 2005. Since 2002 she has been a lecturer in the History department at Basel, teaching courses in Global History, Migration and Migration Theory, and Histories/Theories of Race and Racism, among others. Since 2005, she has been academic advisor and co-editor of the catalogue for an exhibition on Swiss migration at Ellis Island Immigration Museum/USA (2006) and Swiss National Museum/Switzerland (2007).  She has published numerous articles in edited volumes and in journals including Traverse, Zeitschrift für Geschichte, of which she is an editorial board member. Dr. Lüthi’s current research focuses on visions of security and immigration in the USA and Switzerland from 1945 to the present. While with the Orfalea Center, she will be working on exemplary case studies from different decades in the USA, drawing on primary sources from archives and including material such as newspapers, motion pictures, caricatures, posters, speeches. The project aims to trace the conjunction of discourses, social and administrative practices and legislative as well as spatial effects with relation to immigration and security in the two countries. Eventually further countries of comparison (Israel, Germany, Australia) shall be considered in collaboration with other researchers.



Steve Eskow
Berthold Molden
Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for European History and Public Spheres, Vienna
University of Vienna

Berthold Molden is a contemporary historian with a strong affinity to Global History. His main research interests are the construction of memory and the politics of history, as well as the history of the Cold War, particularly in Latin America, Europe and the USA. The function of subcultures in critical (e.g. post conflict) periods constitutes a subject of particular investigative passion. His 2007 book on the politics of history and democratization in post-war Guatemala (Geschichtspolitik und Demokratisierung in Guatemala. Historiographie, Nachkriegsjustiz und Entschädigung 1996-2005) has been awarded the Michael Mitteraurer Prize for Social, Cultural and Economic History. Berthold Molden was a researcher for the Austrian Historical Commission. Later he held the DOC-grant of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, was a Junior Visiting Fellow of the Institute for Human Sciences (Vienna) and a visiting fellow at the Asociación para el Avance de las Ciencias Sociales (Guatemala). Currently, Dr. Molden directs an international research project about European memories of the Cold War, based at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for European History and Public Spheres (Vienna). He teaches at the University of Vienna where he belongs to the Global History working group.During his stay at UCBS, he will continue to work on his research project “Towards a Global History of the Politics of History”: To what extent have controversies on history since 1945 been determined by local structural conditions, or rather by reference to universal and globally spread discourses? Of the project’s six case studies, two are located in the US: the 1971 Winter Soldiers Investigation on US war crimes in Vietnam, and a controversy on restitution to African Americans for the history of slavery in 2001. At the Orfalea Center, Berthold will conduct archival research and interviews on these topics.



Salvador J. Murguia
California State University, San Bernardino


Salvador Murguia is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at Cal State San Bernardino, where he teaches courses in sociology of religion, social theory, deviant behavior, and research methods. His areas of academic interest include religion, social theory, deviance, social psychology, globalization, culture, ethnography, and criminology. Murguia has also been an instructor at UCSB, where he received his Ph.D. in Sociology in 2006. He will be working on a book on postmodern religion in an era of globalization.



Anne-Marie Oliver
Anne-Marie Oliver
Institute for International Studies, Harvard University


Anne-Marie Oliver is a research scholar on the Middle East who has been for many years a Research Affiliate at the Institute for International Studies at Harvard University, but now has relocated to the West Coast.  She has lectured at institutions across the United States, including Yale, Princeton, The University of Chicago, Columbia, Stanford, UCLA, The San Francisco Psychoanalytic Institute, The Annenberg School for Communication at USC, and The Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs.  Her co-authored book, The Road to Martyrs’ Square, was published by Oxford University Press in January 2005, and is a Quill Award nominee.  She has appeared on dozens of radio and television shows in the U.S. and abroad (including CNN, C-SPAN, National Public Radio, the BBC, MSNBC, Air America, Hannity & Colmes, and Fresh Air with Terry Gross) as well as in print media, including The Guardian, The Times, and The Independent. Oliver has just returned from a research visit to the Palestinian West Bank, will be working on new political alliances and the prospects for peace in Israel and Palestine. She has recently published reports of her interviews in Slate and The New Republic.



Mona Kanwal Sheikh
Mona Kanwal Sheikh
University of Copenhagen, Denmark


Mona Sheikh holds an M.A. in Political Science from the University of Copenhagen, where she worked with Prof. Ole Weaver (Political Science, International Relations) in the area of ‘comparative secularisms’.  Their research, which was presented at the 2005 conference of the International Studies Association in Honolulu, argues the ‘strategic’ (conflict de-escalating) potential of ‘comparative secularisms’ and begins to build a matrix for doing this kind of study on a handful of countries (France, US, Turkey, Denmark, Pakistan).  She is a member of several associations and committees involved with ethnic minorities, race, and integration issues. These include, since 2002, board membership with the Documentation and Advisory Centre on Racial Discrimination and a vice chair position with the European Commission-supported INGO European Network Against Racism (ENAR). While at UCSB, Mona will continue her research into religion’s role in the sphere of international relations, specifically dealing with approaches to the question of religion and conflict/peace studies. This research should contribute to developing a method to analyze the connection between religion and radicalization by integrating insights from Security Studies and Sociology of Religion, and strengthen the empirical knowledge on the religious discourses which condition radical Islamism.



Prof. Krzysztof Wojtowicz
University of Worclaw, Poland

(University of Worclaw School of Law, Chair, International & European Law)

Dr. Wojtowicz was Vice-Rector of the University of Wroclaw from 2002-2005 and holds various chairs in the School of Law at that institution.  He specializes in European law and comparative constitutional law, and his current research looks at the application of E.U. Community law in the internal legal order of the member states. He has been a visiting faculty member of several universities in Europe (France, Italy, Germany, Holland, Austria, and England), and in Chicago (U. of Illinois) and Charlottesville (U. of Virginia) in the USA. Professor Wojtowicz will be working on issues of international law and human rights in relationship to globalization. He may also be teaching a course for the global studies program as a visiting professor in the Program in Global and International Studies.



Steve Eskow
The Orfalea Center has hosted several senior and junior scholars from universities affiliated with the Erasmus Mundus European Masters program in global studies, which is comprised of 5 core universities: London School of Economics (England), University of Leipzig (Germany), Roskilde University (Denmark), University of Vienna (Austria), and University of Wroclaw (Poland).

Scholars to date have included (from Vienna): Dr. Berthold Molden, Dr. Sylvie Ruschak, Mr. Leopold Kögler, Prof. Martina Kaller-Dietrich; (from Wroclaw): Prof. Krzysztof Wojtowicz, Dr. Sebastian Jakubowski, Dr. Ireneusz Pawel Karolewski, Prof. Witold Kwasnicki, Prof. Elzbieta Stadtmuller.





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