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Head of Programmes, Centre for Policy Research (UNU-CPR), United Nations University

Adam Day is Head of Programmes at the Centre for Policy Research at United Nations University in New York, having joined UNU in January 2017. In this role, he oversees current research projects and the development of new programmes.

Mr Day is a highly respected expert in peace operations and the changing nature of armed conflict, with decades of experience working in prominent roles within the UN in Headquarters and many field locations.

Prior to UNU, Mr Day served for a decade in the UN, focused on peace operations, political engagement in conflict settings, mediation and protection of civilians. He served as Senior Political Adviser to MONUSCO (DRC), in the UN Special Coordinator’s Office for Lebanon, in the front offices of both UNMIS (Khartoum) and UNAMID (Darfur), and was a political officer in both the Department of Political Affairs and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations in New York. Mr Day also has substantial civil society experience, working in Human Rights Watch’s Justice Program and for the Open Society Justice Initiative in Cambodia.

Mr Day was an international litigator in New York, where he also worked pro bono for the Center for Constitutional Rights on behalf of Guantanamo detainees in their suits against former US officials for torture. He also supported the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

He has several publications in the areas of international criminal law, head of state immunity for international crimes, and rule of law in post-conflict settings. Most recently, these include Capturing UN Preventive Diplomacy Success: How and Why Does It Work? (2018, with Nathan, Honwana and Brubaker), Assessment Framework for UN Preventive Diplomacy: An Approach for UN Mediators and International Policymakers (2018), and Diplomacy and Good Offices in the Prevention of Conflict (2018, with Pichler Fong). A prolific writer, he has recently been published in International Policy Digest, The Diplomat, Global Observatory, Japan Times, and The Hill, among others. He has forthcoming publications with Palgrave, Oxford University Press and Routledge.

Mr Day holds a Juris Doctor from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, a Master's in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and a Master's in Comparative Literature from Brown University. He is a PhD Candidate in the War Studies Department at King's College London.


  • –present
    Head of Programmes, Research Projects, United Nations University