Middlebury’s Kathryn Wasserman Davis Collaborative in Conflict Transformation has selected its second round of faculty research grants. The program will fund eleven proposals, ranging from $10,000 to $50,000, submitted by faculty at the undergraduate College and Middlebury Institute.

“We were impressed with both the number and quality of applications we received for thiese grants,” said Sarah Stroup, professor of Political Science and executive director of the Kathryn Wasserman Davis Collaborative in Conflict Transformation. “The research and artistry of our talented faculty enrich the intellectual environment at Middlebury and contribute to global networks of scholarship and practice.”

The research topics focus on both conflict analysis and strategies of conflict transformation. The grants are designed to support research that approaches conflict in new ways, and to identify solutions to some of the world’s most pressing issues. Studies may focus on conflict ranging from interpersonal to international, and address issues that arise at any stage of conflict from approaching conflict, to existing conflict, to conflict conclusions and consequences.

Grant participants are encouraged to involve the participation of students, and engage with peers across Middlebury’s campuses, other institutions, and the communities that are the focus of the research.

This year’s selection committee included Sarah Bidgood, director of the Eurasia Nonproliferation Program at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies; Chong-suk Han, professor of Sociology; Jeffrey Knopf, professor and program chair of Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies; and Andrea Robbett, associate professor of Economics. Three leaders from the Conflict Transformation Collaborative—Netta Avineri, Sarah Stroup, and Erin Anderson—supported the committee deliberations.

The Kathryn Wasserman Davis Collaborative in Conflict Transformation is funded through a $25 million grant from an anonymous donor. Its name honors the philanthropist and scholar (1907–2013) who founded Projects for Peace and for whom Middlebury’s Kathryn Wasserman Davis School of Russian, is named.

The collaborative, funded over seven years, allows Middlebury to build on the conflict transformation work that is currently being led by faculty and staff throughout the greater Middlebury ecosystem.

The 2023 recipients are:

Michael Abbatiello, Karima Borni, Christal Brown, Meshi Chavez, Laurel Jenkins, Tiffany Wilbur, and Lida Winfield

Movement Matters: Global Body in Conflict (Dance)

Febe Armanios

One Bite and All is Forgiven: Paths to Gastro-Diplomacy and Conciliatory Foodways in Cyprus and Turkey (History and Food Studies)

Carly Thomsen and Laurie Essig

Feminist Studies vs. Feminist Activism (Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies)

Jamie McCallum

A Better Bargain: Transforming Conflict Negotiation Processes Between Workers and Management (Sociology)

Marybeth Eleanor Nevins

Rural Vermont Community Responses to Claims of Anthropogenic Climate Change (Anthropology)

Ajay Verghese and Roberto Foa

The Roots of Hindu-Muslim Conflict in India (Political Science)

Suzanne Gurland

Perspective-Taking in Conflict Transformation (Psychology)

Jeff Langholz

Flowing Toward Peace: Opportunities and Obstacles for Transforming Water Conflicts through Decentralized, On-site Water Production (International Environmental Policy)

David Wick

Host Community Impacts of Study Centers Abroad: Transaction, Extraction, Transformation (International Education Management)

Lyuba Zarsky, Rachel Herring, and Keaton Sandeman

Indigenous People vs. Decarbonization? Exploring and overcoming conflicts between mining of critical materials for clean technology and Native rights, lands and cultures in the U.S. (International Environmental Policy)

James Lamson

Adding North Korea Case Study to Strategic Empathy Project (James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies)

Kathryn Wasserman Davis Collaborative in Conflict Transformation

Grant information, guidelines, and frequently asked questions