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Director, Gender Equality Initiative in International Affairs and Associate Professor of Practice, Elliott School, George Washington University

Shirley Graham, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Practice in the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University, Washington DC. She teaches graduate courses on Global Gender Policy and Gender, War and Peace and an undergraduate course on Women and Global Politics. She is the Director of the Gender Equality Initiative in International Affairs (GEIA) which convenes the Elliott School’s curriculum and engagement in the policy and practice of promoting and achieving gender equality globally.

Shirley’s research interests include thematic areas under the women, peace and security (WPS) agenda: gender and international peacekeeping and women and peace processes. She has consulted on issues of women’s leadership in peacebuilding, post-conflict reconciliation and ending gender based violence for many NGOs including: the Irish Consortium on Gender Based Violence, the Glencree Centre for Peace & Reconciliation, Women for Election, the National Women’s Council of Ireland, Hanna’s House and IMPACT Trade Union.

Shirley received her PhD on Gender & International Peacekeeping from the National University of Ireland, Maynooth IN 2013. She has an MA in International Affairs from Dublin City University (2004) where she is currently a research fellow at the Institute for International Conflict Resolution & Reconstruction (IICRR).
Recent publications include a book review of 'The First Political Order: How Sex Shapes Governance and National Security' (2020) Hudson, Bowen, Nielsen, published in the journal of Ethics in International Affairs, Winter 2021, available at:


  • 2017–2021
    Director, Gender Equality Initiative in International Affairs, George Washington University, Elliott School of International Affairs