Hilary Matfess


Policy Publications and Commentary

 Academic Publications 

Jason Warner, Ellen Chapin & Hilary Matfess (2018) Suicide Squads: The Logic of Linked Suicide Bombings, Security Studies, DOI: 10.1080/09636412.2018.1508632.

Valerie M. Hudson and Hilary Matfess, "In Plain Sight: The Neglected Linkage between Brideprice and Violent Conflict," International Security, Vol. 42, No. 1 (Summer 2017), pp. 7–40.

Jason Warner and Hilary Matfess, "Exploding Stereotypes: The Unexpected Operational and Demographic Characteristics of Boko Haram’s Suicide Bombers," West Point Combatting Terrorism Center. (August 2017).

Matfess, Hilary. "Boko Haram: History and Context." In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History. 2017.

"Conflict Analysis of Northeast Nigeria: Biu, Bursari, Gombi, Hawul, Hong, Jakusko, Jere and Kaga Local Government Areas," For USAID Feed the Future​, (September 2017) with Chitra Nagarajan.

Matfess, H., (2016). Institutionalizing Instability: The Constitutional Roots of Insecurity in Nigeria’s Fourth Republic. Stability: International Journal of Security and Development. 5(1), p.13. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/sta.458

"The March Is Not Linear: Big Party Politics and the Decline of Democracy Worldwide" with Francis Fukuyama in "Beyond Convergence: A World Without Order." CCO (2016). Available here.

“Rwanda and Ethiopia: Developmental Authoritarianism and the New Politics of African Strong Men.” African Studies Review 58.2 (2015): 181-204.

"Ethiopia: Counter-Terrorism Legislation in Sub-Saharan Africa." Small Wars Journal. April 11, 2017.

"Power, elitism and history Analyzing trends in targeted killings in Nigeria, 2000 to 2017." Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime, (December 2018). 

"Sub-Saharan Africa" in "Charting a New Course Strategic Choices for a New Administration". INSS (2016). 

``What Explains the Rise of Communal Violence in Mali, Nigeria and Ethiopia?'' World Politics Review, September 11, 2019. 

"Why Ethiopia Sailed While Zimbabwe Sank." With Alexander Noyes, Foreign Policy, September 6, 2019. 

"Counterproductive Counterinsurgency: Is Mozambique Creating the Next Boko Haram?" With Alexander Noyes, LawfareSeptember 1, 2019.  

"The Progressive Case for Free Trade," Vox,  August 1, 2019.

"What’s behind Ethiopia’s recent political violence?" With Terrence Lyons, Washington Post, July 15, 2019. 

"Can Abiy Keep Reforming?" Lawfare, July 14, 2019.

"The Rapid Support Forces and the Escalation of Violence in Sudan," ACLED, July 2, 2019.

"From the Streets to the Elites: Demonstrations in a Post-Bouteflika Algeria" ACLED, April 3, 2019.

"Gendered Violence and Political Agendas," with Meredith Loken and Robert Nagel, Political Violence at a Glance, February 11, 2019.

"Africa's Giants Go to the Polls: Upcoming Elections in DRC and Nigeria," ACLED, December 21, 2018.

"From Le Bardo to Lusaka: Overlooked Trends in African Political Violence," ACLED, ​December 9, 2018.

"Neighbors in Arms: Intercommunal violence and Targeting of Civilians in Mali in 2018," ACLED,  November 19, 2018.

"A Tale of Two Provinces: Patterns of Organized Violence in Sool and Sanaag Provinces in Somalia," ACLED, November 3, 2018.

"Layered Insecurity in North Kivu: Violence and the Ebola Response," ACLED,  October 26, 2018.

"Targeting Tripoli: Newly Active Militias Targeting Capital in 2018," ACLED, ​September 7, 2018.

"So Ethiopia’s new prime minister wants real democracy? Here’s what has to change first." Washington Post, September 7, 2018.

"Flagged Down: 'America First' Feminism is not the Future," Bitch Magazine, August 13, 2018.

"Cameroon’s crisis deepens," Mail and Guardian, August 10, 2018.

"Women Candidates Face Harassment and Threats of Violence in Zimbabwe," Council on Foreign Relations Blog, ​ August 2, 2018.

"Africa’s Attack on Internet Freedom," with Jeffrey Smith. Foreign Policy. July 13, 2018.

"Cameroon’s Worsening Anglophone Crisis Highlights Need for Dialogue and Inclusion," Global Observatory, July 5, 2018.

"Navigating Human Terrain with GPS (Gender, Peace, and Security) in Western Africa," with Arnel David. Real Clear Defense. April 23, 2018.

"Fixing Ethiopia Requires More Than a New Prime Minister," Lawfare. April 22, 2018.

"Gender Quotas and Backlash." Stratfor. March 19, 2018.

"No Justice, No Peace: Why Justice Sector Reform is A Critical Part of Counter-Terrorism." Stratfor. February 12, 2018.

"Do women matter to international security? Trump just changed the U.S. government's answer to that question." the Washington Post. January 4, 2018.

"Chad’s Inclusion in the ‘travel ban’ Jeopardizes Stability in the Sahel." Stratfor. December 11, 2017.

"In Partnering With Nigeria’s Abusive Military, the U.S. Is Giving Boko Haram a Lifeline." World Politics Review. October 24, 2017.

"How Nigeria's Boko Haram Crackdown Harms Local Economies." Foreign Affairs. July 17, 2017.

"Violence Against Female Politicians."  CFR Women Around the World. July 11, 2017.

"Boko Haram's War on Women." Newsweek. February 8, 2016.

"Here’s the case against Trump selling Super-T planes to help Nigeria’s battle with Boko Haram." Quartz. April 17, 2017.

"Three Years Later, A Look at the #BringBackOurGirls Catch-22." The Daily Beast. April 14, 2017.

"The Vigilantes Fighting Boko Haram With Magic Amulets." The Daily Beast. March 9, 2017.

"Women’s empowerment meets male resistance, sexual exploitation in Nigeria camps." IRIN. February 22, 2017.

"Nigeria's Suffering Civilians." Foreign Affairs. January 30, 2017.

"Boko Haram's Resilience." Foreign Affairs. December 19, 2016.

"China in Africa: Economic Myths and Soft Power." Africa Watch. December 15, 2016.

"A Forgotten Emergency: The Humanitarian Crisis in the Lake Chad Basin." Africa Watch. December 8, 2016.

"Boy Soldiers, Girl Victims: Gender Misconceptions and Women in War." Africa Watch. November 9, 2016.

"Who Joins Boko Haram and Why?" Africa Watch. October 13, 2016.

"Democracy Delayed in Somalia." Africa Watch. September 29, 2016.

"The Obstacles to Consolidating Democracy in Gabon are Shared Throughout Region." September 22, 2016.

"Status of Boko Haram." Africa Watch. September 8, 2016.

"Securing the Virtual Savannah: Global Implications of African Cybercrime." Africa Watch. September 1, 2016.

"Ethiopian Intifada? Anti-Government Protests Shake the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front." Africa Watch. August 25, 2016.

"Boko Haram's Internal Rift probably isn't Good News. Here's Why." Washington Post. August 24, 2016.

"In the Fight Against Boko Haram, What's the Role of the Multi-national Joint Task Force?" Africa Watch. August 18, 2016.

"The Wives of Boko Haram." Foreign Affairs. August 17, 2016.

"Efforts at Pan-African Integration: New Variations on an Old Theme?" Africa Watch. August 11, 2016.

"Strangers in a Familiar Land: A Referendum on Ivoirite?" Africa Watch. August 4, 2016.  

"Miscalculating Security: Obstacles to Reliable Data in Sub-Saharan Africa and Their Implications." Africa Watch. July 28, 2016.

"Urbanization in Sub-Saharan Africa: Perils and Potential." Africa Watch. July 28, 2016.

"PM Netanyahu's African Pilgrimage: Leveraging the Present to Overcome the Past." Africa Watch, July 21, 2016.

"Unstable Foundations -- Constitutional Insecurity and the Crisis in South Sudan." Africa Watch, July 21, 2016.

"Fulani Militants in Nigeria: Mischaracterization Obscures Threat and Impedes Response." Africa Watch, July 14, 2016.

"Nigeria's Breaking Point." Foreign Affairs. July 19, 2016.

"Why Nigeria’s military make bad aid workers." IRIN. July 5, 2016.

"Nigeria's Unbalanced Budget." Foreign Affairs. May 23, 2016.

"Political Violence is as Concerning as Genocide." The Cipher Brief. May 11, 2016

"Here’s why so many people join Boko Haram, despite its notorious violence." The Washington Post Monkey Cage Blog. April 26, 2016.

"Bringing Back Chibok Girls Only Start of Nigeria’s Challenge". IPI Global Observatory. April 25, 2016.

"Chibok Girls -- Do We Really Care?" IRIN. March 31, 2016.

"Nigeria must declare total war on Boko Haram." Al Jazeera America. February 19, 2016.

"Amid Oil Crash, Could Farming Offer Nigeria a Lifeline?" IPI Global Observatory. February 11, 2016.

"Nigeria’s social media bill follows a trend of African governments keeping tabs on civil society" Quartz. December 9, 2015.

"Nigeria's Oil Curse." Al Jazeera America. November 25, 2015.

“Is Burundi Inching Towards War?” IPI Global Observatory. October 21, 2015.

"Don’t repeat mistakes against Boko Haram in Cameroon." Al Jazeera America. October 3, 2015.

"Tanzania’s Election Run-Up Suggests Backsliding Away From Democracy." IPI Global Observatory. September 30th.

"Should You Worry About China's Investments in Africa?" Monkey Cage Blog, The Washington Post. September 9, 2015.

"As Nigeria Seeks Security, Are More Weapons Really the Answer?" IPI Global Observatory. August 27, 2015.

"Obama's Africa Trip Was a Missed Opportunity." Al Jazeera America. August 4, 2015.

"Nigeria needs more military reforms to take on Boko Haram—not more weapons." Quartz. July 24, 2015.

"Nigeria’s Justice System Needs Reform, Not Expansion." The Global Observatory. July 22, 2015.

“Nigeria’s Buhari Hasn’t Been Able to Curtail Boko Haram’s Deadly Affect – Yet.” Quartz. June 30, 2015.  “After Peace Agreement Development Remains Key to Mali’s Progress.” The Global Observatory. June 30, 2015.

"Down but Not Out: How to Fight Back Against Boko Haram's Newest Strategy." Foreign Affairs. June 19, 2015.

“Buhari Must Hold Corrupt Military Officials Accountable.” Al Jazeera America. June 13, 2015.

“Responses Fall Short as Violence Displaces More Nigerians.” The Global Observatory. June 11, 2015.

“The Tripartite Free Trade Area Agreement in Africa is Bound to Disappoint.” Quartz. June 10, 2015.

“Electoral Unrest Threatens Burundi’s Nascent Democracy.” The Global Observatory. April 28, 2015.

"Looming Challenges in Niger Delta Could Threaten Nigeria’s Election Afterglow." The Global Observatory. April 17, 2015.

"It is Survival of the Fittest Here." Foreign Policy. April 3, 2015.

"To Understand Why West Africa is Finally Teaming up Against Boko Haram, Follow the Money." Quartz. March 24, 2015.

"ISIL and Boko Haram Just Allied -- What's next for Nigeria?" Quartz. March 13, 2015.

"US Support for Chad may Destablize Sahel." Al-Jazeera America. March 6, 2015.

"What's Next for Nigeria's Democracy." The Washington Post. February 18, 2015.

"African Union Forces may Exacerbate Boko Haram Threat." Al-Jazeera America. February 7, 2015.