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The Department of Political Science and the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research are excited to announce that Chuyu Liu, Meredith Loken, and Jessica Soedirgo will take up positions as Assistant Professor in Violence & Security in 2021.

Chuyu Liu

Chuyu Liu will be joining the Department of Political Science and the Political Economy and Transnational Governance (PETGOV) programme group at the University of Amsterdam as Assistant Professor in February 2021. Chuyu holds a Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University (2019) and is currently a postdoctoral fellow at SAIS at Johns Hopkins University (2019-2021). His dissertation takes a political economy approach to study ethnic conflict in China; in particular, his work highlights how the local state uses fiscal accommodation to control restive ethnic minorities. Chuyu is preparing a book project for a university press based on his dissertation, and part of the work has been published at Security Studies. His related project explores the politics of Islam in China, including work forthcoming at the Journal of Comparative Economics. Chuyu has published articles on the effects of religious institutions and inter-group inequalities on ethnic violence in International Studies Quarterly and China Review. Methodologically, he uses a mixed-method approach, based on extensive fieldwork in China. Chuyu has broad teaching interests in International Relations, Comparative Politics, and Methodology. At the UvA, he is keen to teach courses in IR, the political economy of violence, civil war, terrorism, ethnic conflict, governance and peace, and East Asian security.

“I am thrilled to join the Department of Political Science at the UvA to work with a group of world-class experts who are renowned for their scholarship. I also look forward to working with UvA students and learning right along with them.” 

To learn more about Chuyu, visit

Meredith Loken

Meredith Loken will be joining the Department of Political Science and the Transnational Configurations of Conflict and Governance (TCCG) programme group at the University of Amsterdam as Assistant Professor in August 2021. She completed her Ph.D at the University of Washington. She specializes in the study of political violence and is specifically interested the relationships between violent actors' gender dynamics and legitimacy, public engagement, and accountability for human rights violations. Meredith interrogates how women’s involvement - as participants or civilians - affects rebel and state behavior, reputation, and outcomes. She is also interested in militant visuals: my current projects in this vein include analyses of cross-national visual propaganda, women in rebel posters, and gender in militia and right-wing iconography. Her book project, Rebel Women: Violence and Legitimacy in Civil War, leverages original data on women's participation in front-line and auxiliary roles in 150 rebel organizations, a novel database of over 2800 militant-produced images, and analyses of conflict-related prosecutions and truth and reconciliation commission reports to explore how women's involvement in rebellion shapes perceptions of violence and conflict outcomes. Her research is published in International Studies QuarterlySecurity StudiesEuropean Journal of International Security,  and Security Dialogue, as well as in Foreign Policy, the Washington Post, Political Violence @ A Glance, and other outlets. 

“I am excited to be joining the department and the TCCG programme group. I am looking forward to working in such an intellectually exciting environment with fantastic colleagues and students at the UvA, and am excited to learn the Dutch secrets of staying dry while biking in the rain!

To learn more about Meredith’s work, visit

Jessica Soedirgo

Jessica Soedirgo will be joining the Department of Political Science and the Transnational Configurations, Conflict and Governance (TCCG) programme group at the University of Amsterdam as Assistant Professor in April 2021. Jessica holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Toronto (2020). She is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Asian Studies Program at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Studies, Georgetown University. Her research is motivated by an interest in ethnic and religious conflict, with a regional focus on Southeast Asia, particularly Indonesia. Jessica primarily uses qualitative methods, grounded in extensive fieldwork. Her book project, The Threat of Small Things: Patterns of Repression and Mobilization Against Micro-Sized Groups in Indonesia, asks why very small groups become targets of state repression and mobilization despite their economic and political insignificance. Jessica’s work has been published in Citizenship StudiesSoutheast Asia Research, Qualitative and Multi-Method Research, and PS: Political Science and Politics. Her research has been supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), the Ontario Government, and the Asian Institute at the University of Toronto. This research informs her teaching interests in comparative politics, peace and conflict, religion and politics, Southeast Asian politics, and qualitative methods. Jessica is an engaged and experienced educator with dedication to students from underrepresented backgrounds. In her teaching, she strives to foster an inclusive, engaged, and collaborative learning environment so that students of all backgrounds can grow. 

“I am really thrilled to be joining the Department of Political Science and the Transnational Configurations, Conflict, and Governance Group at the University of Amsterdam. Scholars here are tackling big questions and are therefore producing incredibly exciting work. In addition, I am especially happy to join a community that are global hubs for both my substantive interests in violence and security and my regional interest in Indonesia!"

To learn more about Jessica, visit