Department of Politics and International Studies & Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy

Dr Leslie Vinjamuri

Key information

Centre on Conflict, Rights and Justice Member Reader in International Relations Member Chair of the CISD International Relations Speaker Series
Department of Politics and International Studies & Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy
BA (Wesleyan), MSc (London School of Economics), MPhil, PhD (Columbia University)
Russell Square: College Buildings
Email address
Telephone number
+44 (0)20 7898 4758
Support hours
Tuesday 4:00pm - 6:00pm


Dr Vinjamuri’s research is on the US global role, international order, geopolitics, human rights and democracy. She is also currently leading a project on the US role in a Global Recovery. She is currently working on a project on the Future of Internationalism, with a focus on the US relationship with China and its implications for international and regional order.

In addition to her position at SOAS, Leslie is Director of the US & the Americas Programme and Dean of the Queen Elizabeth II Academy for Leadership in International Affairs at Chatham House, The Royal Institute of International Affairs. From 2010-2018 she was (founding) co-Director then Director (from 2016) of the Centre on Conflict, Rights and Justice at SOAS. She also chaired the International Relations Speaker Series at SOAS’s Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy from 2007-2018. She is co-editor and contributing author with Charles A. Kupchan of Anchoring the World (Foreign Affairs, 2021), editor of US Foreign Policy Priorities (Chatham House, 2020) and co-editor and contributing author of Human Rights Futures (with Stephen Hopgood and Jack Snyder, Cambridge University Press, 2017). She is also author of ‘How Brexit and Boris Broke Britain’ (Foreign Affairs, 2022), and ‘Trials and Errors: Principle and Pragmatism in Strategies of International Justice’ (with Jack Snyder, International Security, 2004)

Her publications have appeared in journals including International Security, Foreign Affairs, the Annual Review of Political Science, International Theory, Ethics and International Affairs, Daedalus, The World Today, the International Journal of Transitional Justice, Law and Contemporary Problems and Survival as well as numerous edited volumes. Her research has been supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, the Leverhulme Trust, the British Academy, and the Smith Richardson Foundation.

Dr Vinjamuri is Deputy Chair of the Marshall Aid Commemoration Commission. She is a Trustee of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, and Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Institute for Integrated Transitions. From 2019-2022 she was external examiner for the MPhil International Relations at the University of Oxford. She is on the Editorial Board of the Cambridge Studies in International Relations, a member of the LSE IDEAS Advisory Board, and the LSE Phelan US Centre Advisory Board. Vinjamuri is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. From 2015-2018, Dr. Vinjamuri was a member of the Council (a "trustee") of Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs.

Vinjamuri has written for and appears regularly in the media including for CNN; Bloomberg; BBC News, BBC World; BBC World Service; Sky News; The Financial Times; The New York Times; The Sunday Times, The Guardian; The Telegraph; The Independent; Los Angeles Times; National Public Radio; Times Radio; Economist Radio; Al Jazeera English; Voice of America; Channel 4 News; Voice of America; Economist Radio; Raidió Teilifís Éireann (RTÉ).

Before joining the academic staff at SOAS, Leslie was a member of the academic faculty of Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. She has also taught at the London School of Economics and Columbia University and has held fellowships at Harvard University and at the London School of Economics. Previously, she worked in the Asia Bureau at USAID and in the Foreign Affairs division at Congressional Research Service. Leslie has a BA from Wesleyan University, an MSc (Distinction) from the London School of Economics, and a PhD from Columbia University.

Research interests

  • Human Rights
  • International Intervention
  • US Foreign Policy
  • US and the World
  • International Organisation (especially UN Security Council Diplomacy)


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