Faculty and Researchers
Elizabeth StitesResearch Director in Conflict and Livelihoods, Feinstein International Center
Assistant Research Professor, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy
Elizabeth Stites’ work focuses on the effects of conflict and violence on civilian livelihoods. She is particularly interested in how different members within a household make changes to their livelihoods in times of conflict or crisis, and also how violence and livelihood strategies can reinforce each other. On the policy level she examines the effects of humanitarian, development, and military policies on livelihoods, security, and gender roles. Her field work aims to improve the effectiveness of international and national policies through evidence-based research reflecting the lived experiences of local communities. She aims to understand the challenges and hopes that inform people’s daily decision making, and strives to ensure that local people’s voices and experiences are heard in contexts in which they are often invisible. She has worked in multiple countries in sub-Saharan Africa, in Afghanistan, Bosnia, and Nepal and on the Syria crisis.
Prior to joining Feinstein, Elizabeth worked as a consultant to UN organizations, academic centers, and international non-profits. She lived in South Africa for four years in the 1990s, where she researched post-apartheid land restitution and worked closely with families, community groups, government agencies, and non-profit organizations.
Elizabeth holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University, an M.A. from the University of Cape Town (South Africa), and an M.A.L.D. and a Ph.D. from the Fletcher School at Tufts University.
- Intra-household livelihood adaptations and coping
- Male youth and violence
- Cyclical links between livelihoods and violence
- Northeastern Uganda (Karamoja)
- Eastern Africa
- Gender, Culture, and Conflict in Complex Emergencies (NUTR 222/DHP D232), Fall Term
- Gender and Human Security in Transitional States and Societies (DHP D231), Spring Term
- Stites, Elizabeth and Anastasia Marshak. “Who are the Lonetia? Findings from southern Karamoja, Uganda.” Journal of Modern African Studies 54 (2016). 237-262.
- Stites, Elizabeth and Darlington Akabwai. “‘We are now reduced to women’: Impacts of forced disarmament in Karamoja, Uganda.” Nomadic Peoples 14, 2 (2010). 24-43.
- Stites, Elizabeth. “A Struggle for Rites: Masculinity, Violence and Livelihoods in Karamoja, Uganda.” In Gender, Violence, and Human Security: Critical Feminist Perspectives, edited by Aili Tripp, Myra Marx Ferree, and Christina Ewig. New York University Press, 2013.
Feinstein faculty, researchers, and visiting fellows had a prominent role at the SEEP 2017 conference in Washington DC on October 4, 2017. Elizabeth Stites presented findings from the Secure Livelihoods…Read More
The Tufts Nutrition Magazine’s a la carte section described Elizabeth Stites’ work in Uganda that shows the wisdom of traditional herding in Uganda. The story by Julie Flaherty is here….Read More
Feinstein Research Projects
This USAID-funded five year project (2012-2017) aims to improve livelihoods outcomes for the pastoral, agro-pastoral, and agrarian populations in the region.Read More
This fifth year report examines key areas of change in Karamoja over the past five years to inform development programming decisions.Read More
Livelihood strategies and interventions in fragile and conflict-affected areas: assessing trends and changes from 2012 to 2016
This publication explores the evolution of the “livelihoods approach” to development and humanitarian assistance.Read More