Dr. Abiodun Alao PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 19 March 2009 03:35


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Tel: +44 (0)20 7848 1391 
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King's College London 
London WC2R 2LS


Areas of Research and Policy Interest

  • African Security
  • Natural Resources and Conflict
  • Rebellion and Civil Wars


Educational and Professional Background

Dr. Abiodun Alao holds a Doctorate degree in War Studies from the King’s College, University of London, where he was a Ford Foundation scholar between 1987 and 1991. He was also a recipient of the SSRC/MacAurthur Post-Doctoral Fellowship. Other personal Research Grants he has won include Ford Foundation Grant for Research on Natural Resources and Conflict:  USIP Grant for Research on Conflict and Multilateral Diplomacy;  SSRC Conference Grant on African Security; and United Nations University Grant for Research on the Liberian Conflict. He has held teaching and research positions at Universities in Nigeria and Zimbabwe. 


Key Contribution to Research and Policy

Dr Alao has been involved in many policy-oriented activities on the African continent and has consulted for virtually all international organisations working on the continent. He was on the Panel of Academic Experts that advised the office of the UN Secretary General on the civil war in Sierra Leone and was also the co-author of the Concept Paper that resulted in the establishment of the Common Defence and Security Policy for the African Union. In the last two years other United Nations assignments he has undertaken include Consultant to UNDP on the Evaluation of the Control of Small Arms in Liberia; Consultant to the Office of the UN Office of Special Commission for Africa Affairs on the issue of illegal Exploitation of Mineral Resources in Africa; and Member of the Four-Person team that undertook a Comprehensive Evaluation of the activities of the Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery (BCPR) of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). He is also working with a number of African countries. He served as a member of the team that undertook the first Post-genocide Threat Assessment Exercise for the Government of Rwanda and was the Co-author of the first post-Civil War National Security Strategy Framework for Liberia. Currently, he is a member of the group of Experts assisting the Governance Reform Commission of Liberia in its Security Sector Reform agenda. 


Selected Publications 

(a) Books and Monographs 

    Forthcoming 2011:      Mugabe and the Politics and Diplomacy of Security in Zimbabwe

     2007    Natural Resources and Conflict in Africa: The Tragedy of Endowment, Rochester: University of Rochester Press. (xix + 353 pages) (Single Authored)

     2006    The Mau-Mau Warrior, (OSPREY Warrior Series), Oxford: Osprey Publishing Company, 2005, (65 pages) (Single Authored)

     1996    The Burden of Collective Goodwill: The International Involvement in the Liberian Civil War, Aldershot: Ashgate Publishers. xiv + 226 pages (Single Authored)

     1994    Brothers at War: Dissidence and Rebellion in Southern Africa, London: British Academic Press. (xxii + 201 pages) (Single Authored)

     1999    Peacekeepers, Politicians and Warlords: The Liberian Peace Process, Tokyo and New York: United Nations University Press. (xvii + 192 pages) (Co-Authored Book with John Mackinlay and Funmi Olonisakin)

     1998    Africa after the Cold War: The Changing Perspective on Security, Trenton, New Jersey: African World Press, 1998. (xii + 228 pages) (Co-Edited book with Adebayo Oyebade)

     1994 Brothers at War: Dissidence and Rebellion in Southern Africa, London: British Academic Press. (Authored)  

    1993 African Conflicts: The Future Without the Cold War, London: Brassey Publishers, (Authored) 

    (c) Chapters in books and Articles in Academic Journals  


    2010    Nigeria: The Next Generation Report, British Council/ Harvard Institute of Public Health, Occasional Paper, August 2010.  (Co-authored) 61 Pages

     2010:   Chinese Economic Interest and Banking in Nigeria South African Institute of International Affairs Occasional Paper Series No. 65, July 2010.

     2005:   Picciotto, R., Alao, C., Ikpe, E., Kimani, M. and Slade, R. (2005) “Striking a new balance: DonorPolicy Coherence and Development Cooperation in Difficult Environments” Background paper commissioned by the Learning and Advisory Process of the Development Assistance Committee of the OECD, January 2005


     2000    Security Reform in Democratic Nigeria, London: CDS Conflict Security and Development Working Paper Series, No. 2. 2000. (Single Authored) (48 Pages)

     2000    The Role of African Regional and Sub-regional Organisations in Conflict Prevention and Resolution, Geneva: UNHCR Working Paper Series, No. 23, July (Single Authored) 24 Pages

     1993    African Conflicts: The Future Without the Cold War, London Defence Series No. 19. London: Brassey Publishers, (Single Authored) 46 Pages

    1994    Liberia 1994: ECOMOG/UNOMIL Response to Complex Emergency, United Nations University Occasional Paper Series, No. 2, New York: United Nations Headquarters (Co-authored Monograph with John Mackinlay) 38 Pages


    Articles in Journals and Chapters in Edited Books

    2007:   “The Message from the Mess: The Past in the Present and Future of West Africa”, Ife Journal of History (Authored).

    2007:   “Youth in the Interface of Security and Development”, in Conflict Security and Development, Issue 1, No. 1. March 2007. (Co-author with Olawale Ismail)

    2006:   “Peacekeepers Abroad, Trouble Makers at Home: The Nigeria Army, National Politics and Sub-Regional Policies”, in Layi Abegunrin and Soji Akomolafe (Eds.): Nigeria and the World: Essay in Honour of Professor Olajide Aluko: New York: Nova Publishers (Authored)

    2005:   “Disarmament amidst Revolving Constraints: Disarmament and Demobilisation in Liberia” in Ann Fitzgerald and Hilary Mason, (eds) From Conflict to Community: A Combatant’s Return to Citizenship, Shrivenham: Global Facilitation Network (Co-authored with Funmi Olonisakin)

    2005:   “Managing Security in a Period of Change: Lessons and Conclusion from the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS” (Authored) in Anne Hammerstad (ed). People States and Regions, Johannesburg:  South African Institute of International Affairs.

    2002    “Privatization of Security and Security Sector Reform in Uganda” in Damiel Lilly and Michael Page, Security Sector Reform and the Challenges of Privatisation of Security, London: International Alert (Authored)

    2002    “Overview of Conflict in West Africa and the Crisis in Cote d’Ivoire”, in OECD Concept Paper Document on Regional Dynamics and the Crises in West Africa, Geneva: OECD. (Authored)

    2002    “Globalization and the Changing Nature of Conflict in West Africa” in Ozonia Ojielo, Conflict and Conflict Resolution in West Africa, Lagos: CPA Publishers, (Authored)

    2001    “Cut Short for Taking Shortcuts: The Lome Peace Agreement on Sierra Leone”, Journal of Civil Wars, Vol. 4, No. 3, Autumn, 2001. (Co-authored with Comfort Ero)

    2001    “Taking the Discourse Beyond the “Elegant”: Calls for a New Approach to Studying Resource Conflicts in Africa”, in Development and Conflict Watch, Vol. 2, No. 2, May 2001, 

    2001    “Africa 2001 –2002: Possible Conflict Hotspots and Likely Scenario for Massive Population Displacement”, WRITENET, (For UNHCR) June 2001, (Authored)

    “Between Economic Fragility and Political Fluidity: Natural Resource Conflicts in Sub-Saharan Africa, Journal of International Peacekeeping, December, 2000 (Co-authored with Funmi Olonisakin).

    2000    Twenty-Five Years of ECOWAS: The Changing Phases of a Sub-Regional Organizations, African Analysis (Co-authored with Comfort Ero)

    1999    “Diamonds are Forever … But so also are Controversies: Diamonds and the Actors in the Sierra Leone Civil War”, Journal of Civil Wars, Vol. 2, No. 3, (Authored)

    1999    “The Politics of Security Sector Reform in West Africa, in Brassey’s Defense Yearbook, London: Brassey Publishers, (Authored)

    “The Problem of Failed States in Africa”, in Muthiah Alagappa and Takashi Inoguchi (eds.) Internal Security Management and the United Nations, Tokyo: United Nations University Press, (Authored)

    1999    “Sierra Leone: A New Dawn”, in African Business Focus, The Official Yearbook of the British Business Association, London: African Business Association. (Authored)

    1998    “Managing Potential Security Problems in Liberia” in Kayode Fayemi (ed) State Rebuilding after State Collapse: Security, Democracy and Development in Post War Liberia, London: Centre for Democracy and Development, (Authored)

    1998    “Southern Africa After Apartheid: Opportunities and Limitations, in Sola Akinrinade and Amadu Sesay (eds.) Africa In the New International Order (Essays in Honour of Professor James Mayall) London: Pinter Publishers, (Authored)

    1998    “The Genesis and Developments of the Crisis in Sierra Leone”, Briefing Paper for the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House), June (Authored)

    “Abacha and Nigeria: Legacies of a Rule and the Challenges of a Demise”, Jane’s Intelligence Review, August, (Authored)

    1998    “Redefining African Security, in Adebayo Oyebade and Abiodun Alao (eds.) Africa After the Cold War: The Changing Perspective on Security, Trenton, New Jersey: African World Press, (Co-authored with Adebayo Oyebade)

    1998    “The Environment and African Security: Implications of Continued Neglect” in ibid (Authored)

    1998    “Post-Cold War Africa: Ethnicity, Ethnic Conflict and Security” in ibid, (Co-authored with Funmi Olonisakin).

    1998    “Democracy and Security in Africa: The Changing Nature of a Linkage” in ibid, (Co-authored with Amadu Sesay)

    1998    “A Short Peep into a Long Future” in ibid, (Co-authored with Adebayo Oyebade)

    1996    “Analysis of Liberian Peace Agreements” in Jeremy Armon and Andy Carl, “The Liberian Peace Process, 1990 – 1996, Accord: An International Review of Peace Initiatives, Issue 1, (Authored)

    1996    “Comparative Evaluation of the Arms Struggles in Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe”, Journal of Terrorism and Political Violence, Vol. 8, No. 4, Winter, (Authored)

    “Crisis in Central Africa”, Special Report 13 of Jane’s Intelligence Review,  with Andrew Rathmell, John Mackinlay, Clive Schfield, Frank Smyth and William Wallace

    1995    “One Step Forward, Two Steps Backward: Liberia 1994”, in The World in Conflict 1994/95, London: Jane’s Information Group, (Co-authored with Amadu Sesay)

    1995    “The Civil War in Sierra Leone: West Africa’s Forgotten Civil War”, Jane’s Intelligence Review, Vol. 7, No. 5, (Co-authored with Amadu Sesay)

    1995    “The Metamorphosis of the Unorthodox: The Integration and Early Development of the Zimbabwean National Army” in Nguabi Bhebe and Terence Ranger (eds.) Soldiers in Zimbabwe’s Liberation War, London: James Currey, (Authored)

     “Angola’s Second Civil War” in The World in Conflict 1994/95, London: Jane’s Information Group, (Authored)

    1994    “Nigeria: The Return of the Military”, Jane’s Intelligence Review, Vol. 6, No. 3, September. (Authored)

    “The Rwandan Tragedy: Incidence, Prelude or Warning”, Jane’s Intelligence Review, Vol. 6, No. 10, (Authored)

    1994    “Anarchy and Tranquility in the Horn of Africa” in Brassey Defence Yearbook, 1994, London: Brassey Publishers, (Authored)

    1993    “Peacekeeping in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Liberian Civil War”, in Brassey Defence Yearbook 1993, London: Brasseys Publishers. (Authored)

    1993    “ECOMOG in Liberia: The Anaemic Existence of a Mission”, Jane’s Intelligence Review, Vol. 5, No. 4.  (Authored)

    1988    “Nigeria and European Economic Community” in Bolaji Akinyemi, Femi Otubanjo and Olu Agbi (eds.), Nigeria: The First Twenty Five Years (Part of the Official History Project Commissioned by the Federal Government of Nigeria), Ibadan: Heinemann, (Co-authored with Aderemi Ajibewa)

    1988    “Africa and the Refugee Problem: The Case of the Horn of Africa”, Renaissance Universal Journal, (Canada) Vol. 5. No. 4, (Authored)