Sarah Lischer

Assistant Professor at Wake Forest University

Sarah Lischer
Sarah Lischer left PRIO in 2012. The information on this page is kept for historical reasons. Sarah Lischer is an External Associate at PRIO.

Research Interests

  • Causes of civil war
  • International security
  • American foreign policy
  • Forced migration
  • Humanitarian intervention


Department of political science


PRIO started tracking events online in 2007. This listing is not complete. Past events may be mentioned in our news archive.


Selected Publications


  • Dangerous Sanctuaries: Refugee Camps, Civil War, and the Dilemmas of Humanitarian Aid. Ithaca , NY: Cornell University Press, 2005.
  • "Causes and Consequences of Conflict-Induced Displacement," Civil Wars, (forthcoming, Spring 2007).
  • "Military Intervention and the Humanitarian 'Force Multiplier.'" Global Governance, (Jan.- Mar. 2007), 99-118.
  • "Collateral Damage: Humanitarian Assistance as a Cause of Conflict." International Security, 28, 1, (Summer 2003), 79-109.
  • "Refugee Involvement in Political Violence: Quantitative Evidence from 1987 to 1998." New Issues in Refugee Research working paper series. (Geneva: UNHCR, July 2000).
  • "Refugee Crisis in Iraq Risks the Spread of Civil War."Baltimore Sun. July 24, 2006.
  • "This Is No Humanitarian Crisis-Darfur Is a War." Christian Science Monitor. Jan. 3, 2005.
  • "Humanitarian Aid Is Not a Military Business." Christian Science Monitor. April 15, 2003.

All Publications

Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Lischer, Sarah (2011) Civil War, Genocide and Political Order in Rwanda: Security Implications of Refugee Return, Conflict, Security & Development 11(3): 261–284.

Book Chapter

Harpviken, Kristian Berg & Sarah Lischer (2013) Refugee Militancy in Exile and Upon Return in Afghanistan and Rwanda, in Jeffrey T. Checkel, ed., Transnational Dynamics of Civil War. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (89–119).

Popular Article

Lischer, Sarah (2011) No Refuge for Somali Refugees, Huffington Post, 4 November.
Lischer, Sarah (2011) Why Western Aid Won't Save Somalia, Huffington Post, 9 August.

Conference Paper

Harpviken, Kristian Berg; & Lischer, Sarah 2009 Refugee Return and Violence: An Analytical Framework, presented at Mobilizing Across Borders: Transnational Mechanisms of Civil War, , 16 October.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg; & Lischer, Sarah 2009 Refugee Return and Violence: An Analytical Framework, presented at 50th Annual Convention of the International Studies Association, , 17 February.
Harpviken, Kristian Berg; & Lischer, Sarah 2008 Refugee Return and Violence: What are the Mechanisms?, presented at CSCW, UiO & Syracuse University workshop "Transnationalism, Mechanisms and Civil War", , 18 October.

Book Review

Lischer, Sarah (2009) Review of The Iraqi Refugees: The New Crisis in the Middle East, in The Middle East Journal 63(3): 508–509.