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Serena Simoni

Serena Simoni_foto

Samford University (USA)

Biography

Dr. Simoni holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the University of Southern California (USC). She has a B.A. in Political Science -International Relations concentration- from Universitá degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza and and an M.A. in Political Science from California State University Long Beach. Her teaching and research interests include International Relations, International Security, Transatlantic Relations, International Organization and Foreign Policy.  She has published her first manuscript entitled Understanding Transatlantic Relations: Whither the West?(2013) with Routledge. Breaking away from the conventional way to study transatlantic relations, she uses a constructivist theoretical lens to argue that the transatlantic partners'; changing identities since the early 1990's have influenced their political interests and, as a consequence, their national security policies. Her new manuscript addresses the role violence plays in processes of organizational,
economic and political change by analyzing a particular form of women's political agency—their participation as militants in transnational criminal organizations. This subject has been largely ignored in the mainstream International Relations literature on security and violence. Studying the agency of women who employ violence is important because it allows for a more nuanced and complex analysis of both gendered violence and gendered security. In addition, it extends the analysis to a consideration of feminist scholarship that predominantly addresses women as victi\ms, but ignores the complexity of their engagement in conflict as perpetrators. This book documents the lives and activities of women who are not necessarily employing violence reactively, as victims, but rather as powerful political and economic institutional leaders – albeit in supra-legal circumstances. In this process, they are transforming power structures of highly masculinist organizations that have significant transnational/ trans-boundary impacts. Consequently, this book turns to violent women in Italy, Colombia, and Mexico who are leaders, and/or are in positions of responsibility, in criminal organizations (mafias, drug cartels, and to some extent guerilla groups).

Background and education

  • (2008) PhD, University of Southern California
  • (2001) MA, California State Long Beach
  • (1995) Laurea (BA), Universita degli Studi di Roma - La Sapienza

Awards

2014. Dean’s Research Award, Howard College of Arts and Sciences, Samford University.

2006. Final Year Dissertation Fellowship, College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, University of Southern California.

2004. Ross and Marjorie Berkes Scholarship Spring/Summer Research Award, School of International Relations, University of Southern California.

2004/2005/2006. Travel Award, School of International Relations, University of Southern California.

2001. Member of Phi Kappa Phi, Recognition for Supreme Academic Performance, California State University Long Beach.

2001. Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Political Science, California State University Long Beach.

Professional memberships & affiliations

  • International Studies Association (ISA)
  • European Studies Association (EISA)
  • Women's Caucus (WCIS)
  • International Security Studies

Research

Research interests

  • International Relations
  • Gender
  • Transnational Organized Crime
  • International Security
  • Europe and U.S. Relations
  • Foreign Policy Analysis
  • International Organizations
  • Conflict and Cooperation
  • Human Security
  • International Law

Selected publications

  • Simoni, Serena.2013.Understanding Transatlantic Relations: Whither the West?.Link
  • Simoni, Serena.2011.“Transatlantic Relations: A Theoretical Framework”.Link
  • Simoni, Serena.2009.Split or Cooperation? Contending Arguments on the Future of the Transatlantic Relations (1991-2001).Brussels: NATO Official Webpage (2009),Link

Conference talks and lectures

  • European International Studies Association, 11th Pan-European Conference, Barcelona (Spain) September 13-16, 2017. Paper: Change, War and Violence: Militant Women in Colombia. 
  • Workshop “Crisis, the Politics of Resilience and the Future of Transatlantic Relations.” Heidelberg Center for American Studies, Heidelberg (Germany). March 16-19, 2017. Paper: Is NATO Still Up to the Job? The Identity Crisis of the Alliance.
  • Panel Discussion. Heidelberg Center for American Studies, Heidelberg (Germany). March 17, 2017. Panelist: Crisis and Resilience of Transatlantic Relations under the Trump Administration.
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, Baltimore, MD, February 22-25, 2017. Paper: Change, War and Violence: Militant Women in Colombia.
  • University of Alabama Birmingham, Institute for Human Rights. November 16, 2016. Panelist: “The Refugee Crisis in the Mediterranean” focus on Italy.
  • ISAC-ISSS Annual Conference on Security Studies (Notre Dame University, Indiana, November 4-6, 2016). Paper: Violent Women: Gendered Violence and Security.
  • European Social Science History Conference, Valencia (Spain), March 30-April 2, 2016. Paper: Violent Women in Transnational Organized Crime: Overlooked Security Threats.
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, Atlanta, GA, March 16-19, 2016. Paper: Violent Women in Transnational Organized Crime: Overlooked Security Threats.
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention (New Orleans, February 18-21, 2015) and ISAC-ISSS Annual Conference on Security Studies (University of Texas Austin, November 14-16, 2014). Paper: Feminized Security Threats: Transnational Crime and its Violent Women.
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, Toronto, March 26-29, 2014. Paper: Europe’s Official Development Assistance (ODA): Further Straining Identity and National Security in US-European Relations. Paper: America, Europe and the Arab Spring: A missed Opportunity for a Common Transatlantic Agenda.
  • International Security Studies Section of the International Studies Association and International Security and Arms Control Section of the American Political Science Association (ISSS/ISAC), (Washington, DC: October 4-6, 2013). Paper: Mind the Gap: How Foreign Aid Assistance Can Jeopardize Transatlantic Relations. Paper: The United States and Europe in Libya: National Solutions to International Problems.
  • International Studies Association South (ISA South), (Charlotte, NC, October 18-19, 2013). Paper: Can Foreign Aid Worsen the Transatlantic Rift? Paper: Transatlantic Ambiguity during the Libyan Crisis: A Redefinition of Interest and Identity.
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, San Francisco, April 3-6, 2013. Paper: “America and Europe: What’s the holdup with the Arab Spring?” Roundtable: Revisiting Western Military Interventions. A “meso” and “micro” – level perspective: Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.
  • Gettysburg College. Department of Italian Studies, Gettysburg, PA, November 9, 2012. Lecture: “Is the Neapolitan Camorra Exploiting Globalization? National and International Threats.”
  • International Security Studies Section of the International Studies Association and International Security and Arms Control Section of the American Political Science Association (ISSS/ISAC), (Chapel Hill, NC, October 4-6, 2012). Paper: “America and Europe: What's the holdup with the Arab Spring?”
  • XXVI Convegno SISP-Conference Italian Society of Political Science, Rome, Italy, Rome, September 13-15, 2012. Paper: “NATO, the Arab Spring, Libya: Issues causing rifts in the in the U.S. relationship with its European Allies.”
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, San Diego, April 1-4, 2012. Paper: “NATO, the Arab Spring, Libya: What is Not Working Out in the U.S. Relationship with its European Allies? Paper: “Transnational Organized Crime: New Threats for the State”
  • ISSS/ISAC Annual Conference. (Irvine, CA, October 13-15, 2011). Paper: “The Exploitation of Globalization by Transnational Organized Crime
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, March 16-19, 2011. Paper: “Nation-States, Global Governance and Norm Diffusion: The Threat of the Neapolitan Organized Crime”.
  • Institute of Political Science, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Santiago, Chile – December 15, 2009. Paper: “The End of the “West”? A Reading of the Changing Atlantic Order”.
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, New York, February 15-18, 2009. Paper: “Exploring Transatlantic Relations a Theoretical View”
  • Seminar on International Organized Crime, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, November 14-16, 2008: “Napoli! The System, The Camorra and The Pizza. Breaking the Stereotypes.” Invited Presentation for the International Studies Association Annual Convention, San Diego, March 22-25, 2006. Paper: “Securing the West: NATO vs. OSCE”
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, Honolulu, Hawaii, March 1-5, 2005. Paper: “Deconstructing the West: the Case of the ICC”.
  • International Studies Association Annual Convention, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, March 17-20, 2004. Paper: “(Un)Birth of a Nation: The Failure of Mussolini’s Nationalist Project”