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Kerstin Tomiak

Research student, School of Law and Politics

My main research interest is the relationship between state and society in conflict and/or post conflict countries. I am interest in how this relationship develops in state- and peace building processes. Furthermore, I am interested in liberal versus strategic peace building, and which of those is more desirable from a normative standpoint. A second strand includes the role local actors play (or more often play not) in current peace building operations.

My PhD looks at one mediator of this process in one country: at the local media done with and without the assistance of western NGOs in South Sudan, how it is understood by the local population and how it shapes perceptions of and trust in the state and its institutions. I am doing multiple mixed methods research on one case study. This hints at my second research interest: I am combining different methodology and methods in order to find out how qualitative and quantitative methodologies combined can work together in a developing country, what the difficulties of such a combined approach are and if they result in a deeper understanding of social realities.

Supervisor: Dr Christian Bueger