Laia Balcells is an Associate Professor in the Department of Government at Georgetown University. Her research and teaching focus on issues of Security, Peace and Conflict, with a special interest in civil wars, political violence, and nationalism and ethnic conflict. She has been a Niehaus Visiting Associate Research Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University (2015-2016) and Chair of Excellence at Universidad Carlos III of Madrid (Spring 2017). Her first book, Rivalry and Revenge: the Politics of Violence in Civil War has been published in 2017 by Cambridge University Press. Her research has been published in journals such as the American Political Science Review, Comparative Political Studies, International Studies Quarterly, Journal of Peace Research, Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, Political Geography, Business and Politics, Politics & Society, and Journal of Conflict Resolution.