Dyan Mazurana

Dyan MazuranaResearch Director and Professor
Research Professor, Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy
Research Professor, Friedman School of Nutrition
Senior Fellow, World Peace Foundation

Working with Feinstein Since: 2003
Based in: Boston area, MA

Dyan Mazurana directs Feinstein’s Research Program on Women, Children, and Armed Conflict and co-directs the Masters of Arts in Humanitarian Assistance (MAHA) Program. She focuses on gendered dimensions of humanitarian response to conflict and crises, documenting serious crimes committed during conflict, and accountability, remedy, and reparation. She serves as an advisor to several governments, UN agencies, human rights NGOs, and child protection organizations regarding humanitarian assistance and improving efforts to assist youth and women affected by armed conflict. This work includes the protection of women and children during armed conflict, including those people associated with fighting forces, as well as remedy and reparation in the aftermath of violence.

Dyan has written and developed training materials regarding gender, human rights, armed conflict, and post-conflict periods for civilian, police, and military peacekeepers involved in UN and NATO operations. In conjunction with international human rights groups, she contributed to materials now widely used to assist in documenting serious violations and abuses against women and girls during conflict and post-conflict reconstruction periods. She has worked in Afghanistan, the Balkans, Nepal, and southern, west and east Africa.

She has published more than 100 scholarly and policy books, articles, and international reports and her work has been translated into more than 30 languages.

Mazurana has a Ph.D. and an M.A. in women’s studies from Clark University, where she studied International Relations and Comparative Politics; International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law during armed conflict, with an emphasis on women’s rights; Critical Social Theory, English and Comparative Languages. She also holds an M.A. and B.F.A. from the University of Wyoming, where she studied painting, art history, and feminist theory.

Dyan has practiced in the Zen Buddhist tradition of the Order of Interbeing under Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh for more than 20 years. She lives with her two children and their dog in a home with ever expanding gardens.

Research Interests:
  • The ways in which war-affected populations, particularly victims of war crimes and crimes against humanity, recover—or not—from conflict, and the remedy and reparation for survivors that support recovery
  • Gender and humanitarian response
  • Gender dimensions of non-state armed groups
Regional Focus:
  • East Africa
  • South Asia
Courses Taught:
  • Gender and Human Security in Transitional States and Societies (DHP D231), Spring Term
  • Gender, Culture and Conflict in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies (NUTR 222/DHP D232), Fall Term
Most Cited Books and Articles:
  • Benelli, Prisca, Dyan Mazurana and Peter Walker. “Using Sex and Age Disaggregated Data to Improve Humanitarian Response in Emergencies.” Gender and Development 20, 2 (2012). 219-232.
  • Annan, Jeannie, Christopher Blattman, Dyan Mazurana and Kristopher Carlson. “Civil War, Reintegration and Gender in Northern Uganda.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 55, 6 (2011). 875-906.
  • Mazurana, Dyan, Angela Raven-Roberts and Jane Parpart. Gender, Conflict, and Peacekeeping.  Rowman and Littlefield: Oxford and Boulder, 2005.
  • McKay, Susan and Dyan Mazurana. Where are the Girls? Girls in Fighting Forces in Northern Uganda, Sierra Leone, and Mozambique: Their Lives During and After War. Montréal, Canada: International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development, 2004. (Published in English and French)
  • United Nations. Women, Peace and Security: Study of the United Nations Secretary-General as Pursuant Security Council Resolution 1325.  New York: United Nations, 2002. (Published in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish).  Mazurana served as a lead author.
Most Recent External Publications:
  • Atim, Teddy, Dyan Mazurana and Anastasia Marshak. “Women Survivors and Their Children Born of Wartime Sexual Violence in Northern Uganda,” Disasters: The Journal of Disaster Studies, Policy and Management, forthcoming.
  • Proctor, Keith and Dyan Mazurana. “Gender and Violent Extremist Organizations.” In Handbook of Gender and Security, edited by Caron Gentry, Laura Shepherd, and Laura Sjoberg. Routledge Press, 2017.
  • Mazurana, Dyan, Anton Baare and Roxanne Krystalli. “Gender, Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration,”  In Oxford Handbook on Gender and Conflict, edited by Fionnuala Ni Aolain, Dina Hayes, Naomi Cahn and Nalha Valji. Oxford University Press, 2017.  
  • Mazurana, Dyan and Bretton McEvoy. “Enhancing Women’s Access to Justice in the Transitional Phase.” Practitioner’s Manual on Women’s Access to Justice. UN Women, New York, 2017.
  • Mazurana, Dyan, Anastasia Marshak, Teddy Atim, Rachel Gordon and Bretton McEvoy.*“Disability and Recovery from War in Northern Uganda,” Third World Thematic: A Third World Quarterly, 2016. Available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/23802014.2016.1235469 .

News Items

Dyan Mazurana quoted in Frontline article on sexual misconduct
August 21, 2018

Frontline published an article on the UN sex scandal on August 16, 2018. Frontline recently investigated abuse by peacekeepers in its documentary, UN Sex Abuse Scandal. This article shifts focus…

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Dyan Mazura speaks on CBC’s The Current about sexual assault in the aid sector
May 28, 2018

On May 28, 2018, CBC’s The Current, aired a story about the effects of cutting funds to aid groups that are accused of sexual misconduct. Dyan Mazurana is interviewed for…

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Feinstein Research Projects

Justice and Accountability in Northern Uganda

This project seeks to provide timely, precise, and insightful documentary evidence and analysis, drawing on our investigation into how victims and survivors view and experience these justice mechanisms. We aim to inform the processes as well as policies and responses that emerge as the processes unfold.

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Sexual Assault and Humanitarian Workers Project

This study examines the issue of sexual assault against humanitarian and development aid workers.

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Feinstein Publications

Schools out: Why northern Uganda’s girls and boys are not getting an education and what to do about it
education dropout in Uganda

This working paper presents findings from research examining the sharp decrease in girls and boys school attendance that was witnessed between 2013–2018 in northern Uganda.

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The state of the war-wounded in northern Uganda

This large-scale study from northern Uganda investigates how experiences of alleged war crimes or crimes against humanity relate to victims’ disability and how these experiences affect food security, wealth and access to basic services, including their access to basic and therapeutic healthcare over time.

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