Department of Politics and International Studies

Dr Mark Laffey

Key information

Department of Politics and International Studies Senior Lecturer in International Politics Centre on Conflict, Rights and Justice Founding Member Member
BA MA (hons.) PhD (Minn.) SFHEA
Russell Square, College Buildings
Email address
Telephone number
+44 (0)20 7898 4744
Support hours
Term 2: Fridays 11:30 am-1:30 pm and by appointment.


Mark Laffey is a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in International Relations. His research interests are in International Relations Theory, International Security, Foreign Policy Analysis and International Political Sociology, with a particular interest in postcolonial approaches to world politics. A central theme in all his research is the role of hierarchy and violence in shaping the world and how we think about it. He has written on Eurocentrism in IR theory, the role of ideas in foreign policy, the cultural production of insecurity, the relations between democracy, liberalism and force, and the role of policing in shaping world order. His current research focuses on the international politics of the corporation, the politics of memory in imperial contexts, and the implications of China for postcolonial IR theory. His published work has appeared in International Studies Quarterly, European Journal of International Relations, Review of International Studies, Millenium: Journal of International Studies and Security Dialogue and in several edited volumes. He is the co-editor of two books: Cultures of Insecurity: States, Communities and the Production of Danger (Minnesota, 1999) and Democracy, Liberalism and War: Rethinking the Democratic Peace Debates (Lynne Rienner, 2001). As of 2020, Mark is the most cited scholar in the Department.

From 2016-2019 Mark was Head of Department and from 2018-19 he was also Director of Teaching and Learning. He is co-founder of the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy and a member of its steering committee from 2001-2016. Prior to joining SOAS he taught at the University of Minnesota, Macalester College and Kent State University. Mark holds a BA and MA from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand and a PhD from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. His research has been supported by the Social Science Research Council and the British Academy, amongst others.

Department Teaching and Learning Committee - BA International Relations.

PhD Supervision

Name Title
Mr Rashid Ansari The UK’s PREVENT Strategy and state relations with Muslim communities.
Ms Leda Betti Making Cars, Remaking People: the Italian State and the Rescaling of
Class Relations in the Fiat-Chrysler Case
Shreya Bhattacharya
Ms Stephanie Hale Global Elite Networks in World Politics
Pia Ljungman Making Money: Remodelling Europe The causes and consequences of the European sovereign debt crisis narrative
Dani Solomon The ‘liberal international order’ in the mirror of China’s contestation


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