Dr. Gerrit Kurtz was a research fellow for conflict prevention and diplomacy in Africa until September 2021.
He previously worked on the evolution of norms of protection of civilians in a changing global order and advised UN peace operations on local conflict management as a research associate at the Global Public Policy Institute. As a visiting research fellow, he spent time in Oslo, Juba, Colombo, and New Delhi.
Kurtz earned his PhD in peace and conflict studies at the department of war studies, King’s College London with a thesis on frontline diplomatic practices and conflict prevention in state-society conflicts. He holds an MA in international relations from Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt Universität Berlin, and Universität Potsdam.
The most important lesson that international policymakers should draw from their engagement in Afghanistan is to critically reflect on their own impact more seriously. But they shouldn’t give up on the idea of state-building.