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Growing Our Community  

Joao Honwana speaking

Former senior U.N. official João Honwana.

As the School of Diplomacy enters its twentieth year, the faces of its community continue to shift to reflect new ideas, new knowledge, and new opportunities. This fall, three individuals take on new roles at the School to provide students with an even richer educational experience.

Beginning in October, former senior United Nations official João Honwana will join the Diplomacy community, serving as the School's Fall 2017 Sergio Vieira de Mello Endowed Visiting Chair in the Practice of Post-Conflict Diplomacy. With over 20 years of experience in conflict analysis, preventive diplomacy, mediation, Mr. Honwana served in a variety of positions at the U.N. From 2004 to 2006, he was the Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the U.N. Peacebuilding Support Office for Guinea-Bissau, then later worked as the Director of the Africa I and Africa II Divisions of the Department of Political Affairs between 2007 and 2016. Mr. Honwana's experience in the critical field of preventive diplomacy ranges from mediation procedures to the facilitation of stakeholder discussions, illustrating his capacity to moderate differences among parties and channel their energy toward positive outcomes. He also possesses working knowledge of consulting with multilateral institutions and organizations such as the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and more.

Past de Mello Chairs have engaged with the student body in a variety of ways: from conducting guest lectures in classes relating to conflict resolution to personally assisting students in finding new and fulfilling internships. Mr. Honwana looks forward to sharing his extensive knowledge of conflict on the African continent with Seton Hall's classes by presenting small lectures revolving around how the international system addresses violence in the periphery. He also hopes to present on the crisis seen in Mali in 2012, and would offer his perspective, rooted in his on-the-ground experience as well as insights he drew from the parallel debates in the U.N. Security Council, the African Union and ECOWAS.

In addition to its de Mello Chair, the School of Diplomacy will welcome another new face to its ranks this fall. Coming to Seton Hall with research and teaching experience in both the United States and abroad, Dr. Alireza Raisi received his doctorate in Political Science, after defending his dissertation on comparative politics and public policy. Dr. Raisi brings with him a strong body of research on comparative politics and international relations, providing students with a particularly analytical look at one of the most dynamic regions in today's world; the Middle East. Dr. Raisi categorizes his research efforts into three sectors: comparative political economy, foreign policy analysis, Arab public opinion, and religion and politics in the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA). Drawing from his pluralistic background in quantitative and qualitative methodology, Dr. Raisi will teach the research methods courses for both graduate and undergraduate students leading them in developing their own research skills.

Catherine Tinker

Dr. Catherine Tinker.

The School of Diplomacy is also excited to see Dr. Catherine Tinker return to the School in a full-time role this year. Previously teaching at the School as a part-time member of the faculty, Dr. Tinker has led courses on public international law, international environmental law, international organizations, and human rights law and policy. In addition to her teaching career at Seton Hall, Dr. Tinker has taught abroad at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul Law School in Porto Alegre, Brazil, instructing masters' and doctoral candidates on trends in international law. These impressive academic experiences are further complemented by her inspiring non-profit work. In 1992, Dr. Tinker founded the Tinker Institute on International Law and Organizations (TILLO), an ECOSOC accredited non-profit organization that focuses its efforts on, "research, teaching, and training regarding international law, sustainable development, and the United Nations System." TILLO offers a multitude of opportunities for its fellows, interns, and partners to make a positive impact on the work of the U.N. by offering lectures, workshops, and guidance on relevant issues facing international law and the U.N. in the modern world. Through her teaching and this organization, Dr. Tinker has guided a number of students on a path of professional development and critical engagement with the U.N.

This fall, Dr. Tinker expands her course load, teaching two sections of Public International Law as well as graduate seminars on Human Resources in International Organizations and International Environmental Policy. This change gives more students the opportunity to soak up Dr. Tinker's far-reaching knowledge on all topics of international law as well as the intricacies of working within the U.N. system, an experience sure to be complemented by Mr. Honwana’s work on the African continent under U.N. auspices. The combination of these two U.N. leaders on our campus, one emerging from the NGO side and the other supplying a first-hand understanding of field operations, provides students with comprehensive perspective of this historical multilateral institution.

As new and old faces join the roster of the Diplomacy faculty, they bring with them a wide variety of previous field experience, research knowledge, and overall international relations expertise. Their new roles are reflective of the consistent pattern of growth within the School. This community of learners grows and expands by challenging itself with fresh perspectives, and Mr. Honwana, Dr. Raisi, and Dr. Tinker are more than faculty members; they are now critical components of this framework that pushes students to reach new heights.

Categories: Nation and World

For more information, please contact:

  • School of Diplomacy
  • (973) 275-2515