Keough School of Global Affairs broadens expertise with six new faculty

The Keough School of Global Affairs at the University of Notre Dame has appointed six new regular faculty members to its ranks. The new faculty bring diverse areas of expertise, including environmental and natural resource economics; environmental politics and policy; artificial intelligence and labor; environmental anthropology; climate change; forests and agroforestry; geographic information systems; human rights; international aid; international institutions; and water governance.

“We are delighted to welcome these exemplary scholars and teachers to the Keough School,” said Scott Appleby, Marilyn Keough Dean. “Each new faculty contributes in a distinctive way to our ability to identify effective policies and practices designed to protect the planet and to address the intertwined economic, social and human rights crises already caused by global warming. Collectively, these new colleagues promise to reinforce the connection between sustainability and solidarity with those most vulnerable to the consequences of the world’s changing climate and socioeconomic transformation.”

Zoltán Búzás joins the Keough School as associate professor of global affairs. A political scientist, Búzás studies the politics of international law, norms, and human rights. He is affiliated with the Keough School’s Klau Center for Civil and Human Rights. Búzás’s new book, Evading International Norms: Race and Rights in the Shadow of Legality, explores human rights behaviors that are “awful but lawful”—technically legal but antithetical to human rights norms. Focusing on the expulsion of Roma immigrants from France and the school segregation of Roma children in the Czech Republic, Búzás brings attention to racial discrimination against one of the largest and most marginalized European minorities. Before coming to Notre Dame, Búzas was assistant professor of politics at Drexel University, an Open Society Fellow, and a visiting scholar at McGill University’s Centre for International Peace and Security Studies. He holds a PhD in political science from the Ohio State University.

Erin Graham, associate professor of global affairs, is a political scientist who researches international institutions such as the United Nations and the World Bank, specifically their design, financing, rules, and regulations. Before coming to Notre Dame, Graham was an associate professor at Drexel University and held positions at the Niehaus Center for Globalization and Governance at Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania’s Perry World House. In addition to her scholarly publications in peer-reviewed journals, she also has written policy commentary for outlets such as the Washington Post’s “Monkey Cage” blog and the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists. She holds a PhD in political science from the Ohio State University.

Maira Hayat, assistant professor of environment and peace studies, is a core faculty member of the Keough School’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and a concurrent faculty member in the Department of Anthropology. A sociocultural anthropologist, Hayat conducts research at the intersection of the environment, bureaucracy, and law, drawing on ethnographic and archival methods. Animated by postcolonial critique, Hayat’s research has focused on Pakistan, home to the world’s largest irrigation network. Before coming to Notre Dame, Hayat was a postdoctoral fellow in Stanford University’s Department of Anthropology and at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. Her community-engaged teaching on environmental violence and justice has been awarded a Cardinal Course Grant Award for Public Service and an artsCatalyst Grant (at Stanford University) and a Starr Lectureship Award at the University of Chicago. Hayat holds a PhD in anthropology from the University of Chicago.

Yong Lee, assistant professor of technology, economy, and global affairs, is an economist who studies new technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics in relation to labor economics, entrepreneurship, and urban economics. His most current work focuses on how artificial intelligence and robotics affect labor, and the governance and ethical issues related to these new technologies. Lee also studies the application of machine learning, examining socioeconomic questions such as bias, urban inequality and change, and the demand for skill. Prior to joining the Keough School, Lee was an SK Center Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford University. He holds a PhD in economics from Brown University.

Sisi Meng, assistant teaching professor of economics and technology for development, researches environmental and natural resource economics, focusing on the economic aspects of climate change adaptation and natural hazard risk mitigation. She also specializes in the interdisciplinary study of labor, health, development, socioeconomics, and geography, integrating multiple disciplines and techniques. Meng is particularly interested in applying geographic information system techniques to spatial cost-benefit analysis of complex environmental issues. She holds a PhD in economics from Florida International University and is a faculty affiliate of Notre Dame’s Environmental Change Initiative. Meng currently teaches Microeconomics and Quantitative Methods in the Master of Global Affairs program.

Daniel Miller, associate professor of environmental policy, researches international environmental politics and policy, focusing on forests. An expert on the socioeconomic and ecological impacts of conservation funding in tropical countries and the political factors shaping those impacts, Miller’s research prioritizes marginalized populations and poverty alleviation. Miller also studies how forests and trees contribute to human well-being in rural areas around the world. He is coordinator of the Forests and Livelihoods: Assessment, Research and Engagement (FLARE) network, a group dedicated to advancing the state of knowledge at the intersection of forests and livelihoods. Miller currently teaches the master of global affairs course Climate Change and International Policy. He holds a PhD in natural resources and environment from the School for Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan.

The Keough School of Global Affairs advances integral human development through research, policy and practice; transformative educational programs; and partnerships for global engagement. Founded in 2014, the Keough School builds on the strengths of nine institutes focused on international research, scholarship, and education. The School offers academic opportunities at both the graduate and undergraduate level, including a master of global affairs degree and a supplementary major in global affairs.

Keough School faculty bios

Photo: Clockwise from top left, Zoltán Búzás, associate professor of global affairs; Erin Graham, associate professor of global affairs; Maira Hayat, assistant professor of environment and peace studies; Daniel Miller, associate professor of environmental policy; Sisi Meng, assistant teaching professor of economics and technology for development; Yong Lee, assistant professor of technology, economy, and global affairs.

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