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Julia Raven

Dissertation Fellow
UC Berkeley

Julia Raven is a Ph.D. candidate at UC Berkeley in political science. She specializes in security sector adaptation and studies how and under what conditions the police and military can reform. Her dissertation project in particular combines archival research and mixed methods analyses to determine the development and durability of ethnic exclusion in colonial and post-colonial militaries. Her project, entitled “Constrained Militaries: The durability of colonial military institutions” consists of two distinct parts. First, she is conducting archival research to build an original dataset of colonial military structures. This will help us understand how and under what conditions colonizers made their colonies’ militaries ethnically stacked versus ethnically inclusive. This dataset project will also help break open the “black box” of the colonial era by codifying what is mostly undigitized and hard to access documentation, allowing scholars to statistically analyze pre-independence, rather than extrapolate backward. Second, she will be theorizing and testing the durability of colonizer-designed militaries in order to determine more conclusively whether the colonial era had any impact on the security sectors in post-independent states, as we know it had on other economic and social institutions. The overarching goal of her work is to help policymakers understand the challenges to security sector reform and under what conditions reforms can best happen.

Proposal Title: Constrained Militaries: The Durability of Colonial Military Institutions

Expertise & Interests

  • Military adaptation
  • Adaptation failures
  • Historical legacies
  • Peace processes