Executive Committee

BISA is run by a board of trustees who make up our Executive Committee. The majority of trustees are elected by you – the members – however we have some trustees who are co-opted to take on specialist roles. All of our trustees are unpaid. Because we’re a registered charity, our trustees are legally responsible for our management and administration. They have expertise and interests that represent the main areas of our activity and a breadth of experience from the wider world. You can find out more about becoming a trustee on our elections page.

Our staff attend the Executive Committee meetings so they can give advice based on their individual expertise. This also ensures they can focus on the priorities of our trustees.

Professor Kyle Grayson
Professor Kyle Grayson, Chair
Newcastle University

Kyle (PhD York University, Canada) is a Professor of Security, Politics, and Culture and the Head of the School of Geography, Politics, and Sociology at Newcastle University. Kyle joined the board of trustees as a co-opted member in 2016  shortly thereafter becoming the Secretary and serving as the Conference Programme Chair from 2017-2020. He is looking forward to continuing to represent and serve the interests of BISA members in the Chair role.

Juanita Elias
Professor Juanita Elias, Vice Chair
University of Warwick

Juanita is a Professor of International Political Economy at the University of Warwick. She is also deputy head of the department of Politics and International Studies at Warwick and also serves as her department’s director of equality, diversity and inclusion. Her research interests are in feminist political economy, the political economy of Southeast Asia, and studies of work and migration. She was co-lead convener of the International Political Economy working Group (IPEG) between 2020 and 2022. She is also currently serving as an editor at the Review of International Political Economy.

Helena Farrand Carrapico
Professor Helena Farrand Carrapico
Northumbria University, Secretary

Helena is a Professor in International Relations and Criminology, as well as a Jean Monnet Chair (Northumbria University, Newcastle), who is incredibly passionate about teaching and researching European internal security governance, in particular cyber crime and cybersecurity. She has also been serving as Director of Research and Knowledge Exchange for the Social Sciences Department over the past two years, following a position as Head of Subject.

Ilan Zvi Baron
Professor Ilan Zvi Baron
Durham University

Ilan is a Professor in the School of Government and International Affairs at Durham University. He has been Head of School, Deputy Head of School and Director of Education. He has held visiting positions at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the University of British Columbia, and the London School of Economics, and has university teaching experience in Canada, Spain, Israel and the UK. He has published widely on such topics as post-truth politics, violence, the international cultural politics of food, Jewish Diaspora/Israel relations, and political responsibility. His work is largely concerned with the international politics of the everyday. 

Ilan's focus as trustee is on teaching and learning. BISA has done a lot of work in supporting this side of the vocation and Ilan is delighted to be able to continue in this tradition. He wants to help develop more productive ways of supporting academics as educators, encouraging students become lifelong learners and academics to become lifelong educators.

Dr Nick Caddick
Dr Nick Caddick
Anglia Ruskin University

Nick is Associate Professor and Deputy Director of the Veterans and Families Institute. His work uses narrative as a conceptual and methodological device for understanding the legacies of war for military veterans as well as others affected by conflict. Nick is currently working on his first monograph for Edinburgh University Press entitled ‘The cultural politics of veterans’ narratives: Beyond the wire’, and is leading two major projects; the AHRC-funded ‘Stories in Transition’ project, which uses co-productive methods and creative practice filmmaking to explore veterans’ stories of transition to civilian life through arts, culture and sport, and research funded by the Forces in Mind Trust examining the impact of Non-UK service and immigration in the British Armed Forces. He is an editorial board member for the Critical Military Studies journal, and a BISA member since 2020.

Marianna Charountaki
Dr Marianna Charountaki
University of Lincoln

Marianna Charountaki is Senior Lecturer in International Politics at the University of Lincoln (School of Social and Political Sciences). She has acted as Director of the Kurdistan International Studies Unit (2016-2019) at the University of Leicester. She is a BRISMES trustee and convener of the BISA Foreign Policy Working Group. She is also Research Fellow at Soran University (Erbil, Iraq). She has worked as consultant at the Iraqi Embassy in Athens (Greece, 2011-2012). Marianna has been researching the Middle Eastern region, in light of IR discipline, but also through extensive field work research (2007 to present).  Her research lies at the intersection of IR theories, foreign policy analysis and area studies with an emphasis on the interplay between state and non-state entities as well as the latter’s conceptualisation and foreign policy standing. She is the author of the monographs The Kurds and US Foreign Policy: International Relations in the Middle East since 1945, (Routledge, 2011) and Iran and Turkey: International and Regional Engagement in the Middle East (I.B. Tauris, 2018) and co-author of Mapping Non-State Actors in International Relations (Springer, 2022). She has published articles in Harvard International ReviewCambridge Review of International Affairs, International Politics Journal, Third World Quarterly, British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies and others.

Tim Edmunds
Professor Tim Edmunds
University of Bristol

Timothy Edmunds is Professor of International Security and director of the Global Insecurities Centre at the University of Bristol. He is also a director of the SafeSeas network on maritime security and author of Understanding Maritime Security (Oxford University Press, 2024, with Christian Bueger). Between 2015-19, he was founding Editor-in-Chief of the European Journal of International Security for Cambridge University Press and the British International Studies Association (BISA). His work addresses issues of security policy, capacity building and security sector reform, with a focus on the maritime domain. He has advised government departments including the UK Cabinet Office, Ministry of Defence and Department for Transport, most recently on the 2022 UK National Strategy for Maritime Security. He has also provided written and oral evidence to the UK parliament. His maritime security research has been funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council, British Academy and EU Horizon 2020 programme.

Jack Holland
Professor Jack Holland
University of Leeds

Jack Holland is Professor of Global Security Challenges at the University of Leeds, where he founded the Centre for Global Security Challenges. He is currently Director of Research and Editor of the British Journal of Politics and International Relations. His research is on the foreign and security policy of the US, UK, and Australia (now AUKUS). The most recent of his six books is, Selling War and Peace: Syria and the Anglosphere (Cambridge University Press 2020). 

Lee Jarvis
Professor Lee Jarvis
University of East Anglia

Lee Jarvis is a Professor of International Politics, and Associate Dean for Research (Arts and Humanities) at the University of East Anglia, UK. His work explores the construction, communication, and outcomes of security politics, especially in relation to terrorism and counterterrorism. Lee’s work is frequently collaborative, often interdisciplinary, and methodologically plural. His next book, Radicalisation, Counter-radicalisation and Prevent: A Vernacular Approach – co-authored with Andrew Whiting and Stuart Macdonald – will be published by Manchester University Press in February 2024.

Una McGahern
Dr Una McGahern
Newcastle University

Una is Senior Lecturer in Politics at Newcastle University. An interdisciplinary social scientist and political ethnographer within a focus on Israel-Palestine, her work bridges the disciplines of IR, political geography and comparative politics, and centres issues relating to security, mobility, space, and borders in Israel-Palestine within a range of contemporary academic conversations and debates. She has published articles in journals such as Security Dialogue, International Political Sociology, Political Geography, Mediterranean Politics and Mobilities as well as a book with Routledge and is a newly appointed member of the editorial team at Mobilities.

Laura McLeod
Dr Laura McLeod, EDI Officer
The University of Manchester

Laura McLeod is Senior Lecturer in International Politics at the University of Manchester. Her work is broadly in the areas of gender, feminism, security, and peacebuilding in post-conflict contexts. Much of her focus is on the United Nations Security Council's Women, Peace and Security agenda, activities around it and its implementation within the United Nations and former Yugoslavia. With funding from the British Academy, Laura has researched the United Nations’ Women, Peace and Security indicators. Laura has also worked with Dr Maria O’Reilly (Leeds Beckett University) to develop a feminist intervention and analysis of the concepts, methods and approaches used in the field of critical peacebuilding. From this project, a Special Issue of Peacebuilding ‘Critical Peace and Conflict Studies: Feminist Interventions’ was published in 2019, and an edited volume Feminist Interventions in Critical Peace and Conflict Studies in 2021. Laura is former Conversations Editor of the International Feminist Journal of Politics, and currently serves on the editorial board. She is an active member of BISA since 2006 and served as the convenor of the Gendering IR Working Group 2013-16.

Simon Rushton
Professor Simon Rushton
University of Sheffield

Simon is a Professor of International Politics in the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Sheffield. Simon’s research interests focus on the global politics of health, peace and conflict, and participatory research methods. His work has looked in particular at international responses to infectious diseases; the links between health and international security; the changing architecture of global health governance; healthcare delivery in conflict and other crisis situations; and post-conflict peacebuilding. His current research projects are in Nepal and Colombia. Simon joined the BISA Executive Committee as an elected trustee in 2020.

Geoffrey Swenson
Dr Geoffrey Swenson
City, University of London

Geoff is a Reader in International Politics at City, University of London, an External Affiliate of the Ostrom Workshop at the University of Indiana, a British Academy Mid-Career Fellow, and a former Term Member of the Council on Foreign Relations. His current research focuses on issues related to post-conflict reconstruction, democracy and the rule of law, legal pluralism, and foreign aid. His book,  Contending Orders: Legal Pluralism and the Rule of Law, was published by Oxford University Press in 2022 and his research has been published in several leading journals, including International Security, International Studies Quarterly, and World Development.

Co-opted members

Juliet Dryden
Juliet Dryden (BISA Director/CEO)

Juliet has worked in the field of international relations for the last 25 years specialising in programme management, international development/humanitarian affairs and donor relations.

Juliet has previously worked at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House), the London School of Economics (LSE Ideas) and for 15 years with the United Nations in Cairo, Gaza and Jerusalem (UNRWA, UNOCHA, UNOHCHR). Her most recent position prior to joining BISA was at the West Asia - North Africa (WANA) Institute in Amman where she was the Director of Programmes. Juliet holds an MA in International Relations from the University of East Anglia.

Juliet was also elected as a member of the Chatham House Council in July 2021.

Outside of BISA, Juliet loves reading political biographies, outdoor swimming, spending time with her family and living a quiet life after years of living dangerously!

+44 7753 688648
Dr Jennifer Medcalf
Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Jennifer is Head of the Defence and International Security Research Group at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. DISRG, part of the FCO Research Analyst cadre, provides policy-focused research, analysis and advice on a range of defence and international security issues. Prior to joining the FCO, Jennifer worked at the University of Bath as Lecturer in Politics and then for the Ministry of Defence as Senior Lecturer in Defence and International Affairs at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

Onyendidi Olibamoyo
Onyendidi Olibamoyo, PGN Chair
University of Bath

Onyendidi Olibamoyo is a dedicated PhD candidate in the Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of Bath. Her doctoral research delves into the dynamic role and influence of African states within global cyber norms processes. Prior to this pursuit, Onyendidi obtained a BA in History and International Relations from Redeemer's University Nigeria, and subsequently, an MA in History and Strategic Studies from the University of Lagos.

With prior experience as a Graduate Assistant and Researcher at Redeemer's University, Onyendidi brings a wealth of insight to her academic journey. Her research pursuits encompass cyber diplomacy, security studies, and the intricate landscape of African politics.

Beyond academia, Onyendidi cherishes moments with her family. You can connect with her on social media via @OnyendidiO and @Onyendidi.

Honorary President

Professor Ruth Blakeley
Professor Ruth Blakeley
University of Sheffield

Ruth is Head of Politics and International Relations at the University of Sheffield. Her research interests are in international security, terrorism and political violence, and human rights. Her research on the CIA’s Rendition, Detention and Interrogation programme has had considerable impact, through litigation on behalf of torture victims at the European Court of Human Rights, and through various police and government level investigations into the role of the UK’s intelligence and security services. She was lead editor of the Review of International Studies from 2015-2019.

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