Shaf Zafeer

The Political Economy of Foreign Direct Investment during Intense Intrastate Conflict

My research focuses on the Political Economy of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) during intense intrastate conflict and seeks to identify why some conflict countries are still able to attract FDI outside the more lucrative resource abundant sectors of the economy despite the reluctance of the international private sector in conducting business in politically and economically unstable countries. This is consistent with the main International Relations theory of Liberalism, and Globalisation paradigms on the negative effects of conflict on commercial relationships.

By challenging the International Relations debate, my PhD projects builds a challenging counter intuitive research puzzle as it attempts to find sufficient explanations to show how certain dynamics can assist conflict states in attracting foreign investors. In doing so, I explore the influence of External Military Intervention (EMI), distinguishing between unilateral and multilateral intervention and its compositional nature and whether the participation of particular military forces influences the inflow of FDI.


  • BA International Business
  • MA International Conflict Analysis (BSIS)

Research interests

  • International Relations Theory
  • Contemporary Intrastate Conflicts
  • Security Studies
  • State Failure and Collapse

Teaching responsibilities

  • POLS 105 Introduction to International Relations
  • POLS 329 War Torn States and Post Conflict Reconstruction (Guest Lecture on Neo-Patrimonialism and State Collapse)

Professional Services

Guest Researcher at the Peace Research Institute Frankfurt (PRIF)/Hessische Stiftung Friedens-und Konfliktforschung (HSFK), Germany (April 2011 – July 2011), Research Areas: Private Actors in the Transnational Sphere: The Role of Transnational Corporations in Conflict Zones

Researcher to Antoine Ripoll, Deputy Secretary-General, Head of the Presidency Service and Spokesman of the Chairman of the EPP-ED Party of the European Parliament, Brussels, Belgium (October 2006 – August 2007), Research areas: The Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP)

Researcher at the United Kingdom Regional Representation to the European Union, Brussels, Belgium (June 2005 – June 2006), Research areas:  EU Policy on Competitiveness and Single Market; R&D and Innovation; Environment, Climate Change and Sustainability; and Education, Skills and Social Policy.


‘The Political Turmoil in Iraq’ European Commission Stagiaires Journal,  (February 2005)

‘Victory for Mugabe: The Zimbabwean Situation’ European Commission Stagiaires Journal,  (May 2005)

‘The Asian Tsunami: A Collective Head Emerges from the Sand’ European Commission Stagiaires Journal, (November 2005)

‘Elections in Palestine: Will Reform Lead to Peace?’ European Commission Stagiaires Journal, (November 2005)