Dr Giuditta Fontana

Dr Giuditta Fontana

Department of Political Science and International Studies
Associate Professor in International Security

Contact details

School of Government
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Giuditta Fontana is a political scientist specialising in peace processes and war-to-peace transitions. She is interested in the design of peace accords and in the reform of cultural and educational institutions in conflict-affected societies. She is committed to multi-method research and has contributed to the creation of the dataset of Political Agreements in Internal Conflicts and of the dataset of Formal Education in Political Agreements. She has experience of fieldwork in Europe, West Africa and the Middle East. 


  • PGCHE, University of Birmingham, 2018
  • PhD Education and Conflict Regulation, King's College London, 2014
  • MA Mediterranean Studies, King's College London, 2008
  • BSc International Relations and History, London School of Economics, 2007


Giuditta is an Associate Professor in International Security. Her research interests include peace processes in conflict-affected societies, power-sharing, education reform and cultural policy in Europe, the Middle East and West Africa.

She was previously a Birmingham Fellow and Leverhulme Early Career Fellow focusing on the interface between peace processes and reforms of cultural institutions (such as schools, the media and museums) in divided societies (Northern Ireland, Lebanon, Sierra Leone and North Macedonia).

Giuditta is a United World College alumna (UWCAD 2004) and holds a BSc International Relations and History from the London School of Economics (2007) and an MA Mediterranean Studies from King's College London (2008). Her PhD (awarded in October 2014 by King's College London) focused on the political function of formal education in deeply divided societies and compared the experiences of Lebanon, Northern Ireland and North Macedonia.


  • Contemporary Perspectives on Conflict (MA)
  • Global History (BSc)

Postgraduate supervision

Giuditta welcomes new PhD applications in the areas of:

  • war-to-peace transitions and peace processes;
  • education reform in conflict-affected contexts;
  • institutional design and power-sharing;

See postgraduate courses on FindaPhD.

PhD opportunities


Research Interests

Giuditta’s research interests include the design of peace accords, the reform of cultural and educational institutions in conflict-affected societies, institutional designs (particularly powersharing), and qualitative and multi-method research designs.

Current Projects

Giuditta is currently working on the following projects:

  • Learning from Failure: Tackling War Recurrence in Protracted Peace Processes (Co-I, with S. Wolff, A. Kartsonaki, N. Neudorfer and C. Yakinthou, University of Birmingham, UK).
  • Peace Processes in Crisis (PI, with I.Masiero, University of Geneva, Switzerland).
  • Cultural Reforms in Peace Processes: Symbolic Politics and Political Economy.

Other activities



Education Policy and Power-Sharing in Post-Conflict Societies: Lebanon, Northern Ireland and Macedonia, New York: Palgrave, 2016.

Articles in Peer-Reviewed Journals

“Beyond Reassurance: The Reputational Effect of Cultural Reforms in Peace Agreements” (with I. Masiero), Government and Opposition, 2022, https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/government-and-opposition/article/beyond-reassurance-the-reputational-effect-of-cultural-reforms-in-peace-agreements/AA4030E1C13E06CA0D9B61F9C193F489.

“It's about keeping children safe, not spying”: A governmentality approach to Prevent in primary education” (with R. da Silva and M.A. Armstrong), British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 2022, https://doi.org/10.1177/13691481211021212.

“The Dataset of Political Agreements in Internal Conflicts”, (with A. Kartsonaki, N. Neudorfer, D. Walsh, S. Wolff and C. Yakinthou), Conflict Management and Peace Science, 38:3, 2021, https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/0738894220944123.

“Managing War-to-Peace Transitions after Intra-State Conflicts: Configurations of Successful Peace Processes”, (with M.B. Siewert and C. Yakinthou), Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding, 15:1, 2020, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17502977.2020.1770479.

“Does Education Help the Transition out of Power-Sharing in Plural Societies? A Comparative Study”, Ethnopolitics, 20:4, 2021, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17449057.2019.1595909?journalCode=reno20.

 “Mapping the Relationship between Education Reform and Power-Sharing in and after Intra-State Peace Agreements: A Multi-Methods Study”, International Journal of Education in Emergencies, 4:1, 2018, 74-113.

“Educational Decentralisation in Post-Conflict Societies: Approaches and Constraints”, Third World Thematics, 6, 2017, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/23802014.2016.1338921 *

“Religious Education after Conflicts: Promoting Social Cohesion or Entrenching Plurality?”, Compare, 46:5, 2016, 811-831.

“War by Other Means: Cultural Policy and the Politics of Corporate Consociation in Bosnia and Herzegovina”, Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, 19, 2013 https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13537113.2013.847601

“Creating nations, establishing States: Ethno-religious heterogeneity and the British creation of Iraq in 1919-1923”, Middle Eastern Studies, 47:1, 2010.

Chapters in Edited Volumes

“The Prevent Duty in Primary Schools: Enactment and Implications” (with R. da Silva and M.A. Armstrong), in L. Jerome, and Busher, J. (eds.) The Prevent Duty in Education: Enactment, Impact and Implications. London: Palgrave Pivot, 2020. www.palgrave.com/gb/book/9783030455583

“Educational Decentralisation in Post-Conflict Societies: Approaches and Constraints”, in Paul Jackson and Gareth J. Wall, Post-Conflict Reconstruction and Local Government, London: Routledge, 2019.

 “State-Building and Religious Education in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”, In Theodor Hanf and Karim El-Mufti (eds.), Policies and Politics of Teaching Religion, Baden –Baden: Nomos, 2013, 69-88.


Formal Education in Political Agreements, 1989-2016 (FEPA), University of Brimingham e-data (UBIRA), 2023, https://doi.org/10.25500/edata.bham.00000910.

The Dataset of Political Agreements in Internal Conflicts (PAIC) (with A. Kartsonaki, N. Neudorfer, D. Walsh, S. Wolff and C. Yakinthou), University of Brimingham e-data (UBIRA), 2021, https://doi.org/10.25500/edata.bham.00000581.

Invited Book Reviews

“Institutional designs to manage ethnic diversity in conflict-affected states: conceptual, methodological and empirical innovations”, Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, 2023,  10.1080/13537113.2023.2167507.



Expertise in conflict management  and constitutional design for divided societies (particularly power-sharing); in cultural expressions (including the media, museums and education) in divided and post-conflict places; in education reform design and implementation in plural societies. 

Policy experience

Giuditta Fontana is an expert on education in conflict and post-conflict contexts. Her first monograph, Education Policy and Power-Sharing in Post-Conflict Societies was published in 2016 with Palgrave. She has experience providing consultancy and drafting reports for government departments and international organisations, including the European Commission and the World Bank.