Curriculum Vitae


PhD - Politics & International Affairs | University of South Florida | 2023 (Expected)
Specializations: Politics of Development / International Security
Dissertation: “Violence, Rents, and Elites: Institutional Determinants of Political Order in Ethiopia, Rwanda, and South Sudan”
Committee: Steven C. Roach (major advisor); Jongseok Woo; Earl Conteh-Morgan; John Ishiyama

MA - Diplomacy & International Commerce | Norwich University | 2019

BA - Political Science, International Politics | Washington University in St. Louis | 2013

Honors and Awards

  • Searle Fellow Publication Accelerator Grant, Institute for Humane Studies, 2022.

  • Adam Smith Fellowship, Mercatus Center at George Mason University, 2022-23.

  • Research Grant, Association for the Study of Middle East and Africa, 2022.

  • Hayek Fund for Scholars, Institute for Humane Studies, 2021, 2022.

  • Distinction, PhD Comprehensive Examinations, University of South Florida, 2021.

  • Conference Travel Grant, University of South Florida, 2020, 2022.

  • University Graduate Fellowship, University of South Florida, 2019-20.

Teaching Experience

University of South Florida
Instructor (2021 - present)

  • Intro to Comparative Politics (CPO 2002)

  • Intro to International Relations (INR 2002)

  • Conflict in the World (INR 4083)

Teaching Assistant (2019 - 2021)

  • Globalization (INR 3011)

  • Rwanda Beyond Genocide: The Politics of Justice & Development (POS 3931)

Concordia University Texas
Adjunct Faculty (2019 - present)

  • Leadership Theory & Practice (LDR 2201)

  • Leadership & Career Capstone (LDR 4101)


Journal Papers (Peer Reviewed)

Demerew, K. “Realist Perspectives on Nile Politics: Conflict and Cooperation Between Ethiopia and Egypt.” African Security 15, no. 3 (2022): 213-236. DOI: 10.1080/19392206.2022.2081763.

Demerew, K, “Elites, Rents, and Transitions: A New Institutionalist View of Ethiopia’s Political Development,” Africa Today 68, no. 3 (2022): 65-86. DOI: 10.2979/africatoday.68.3.04.

Demerew, K. “From Red Sea to the Nile: Water, Power, and Politics in Northeast Africa.” Third World Quarterly 42, no. 12 (2021): 2883-2901. DOI: 10.1080/01436597.2021.1977622.

Working Papers

Demerew, K. “Contractualism, Governmentality, and Sovereignty: Reconfiguring the African State.” International Journal of Political Theory. (In Review)

Demerew, K. “Can Institutions Explain Mass Violence? Amhara 'Settler' Discourse and Ethiopia’s Ethnic Federalism." To be submitted to Comparative Political Studies. (First draft complete)

Works In Progress

Demerew, K., and Partaw, M. “Institutional Logic of Fragile States: From South Sudan to Afghanistan .” To be submitted to The Journal of the Middle East and Africa. (Draft In Progress)

Demerew, K. “Development Politics and the Nile: Pathways to Cooperation and Conflict.” In Steven Roach (ed.), Nile Politics: Cooperative Peace, Hegemony, and the New Riparian Reality. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar. (Solicited chapter for book under contract – draft in progress)

Demerew, K. Violence and Development: Political Elites, Institutions, and Discourse in African States. (Book manuscript – early stages)

Research Experience

University of South Florida School of Interdisciplinary Global Studies

Research Assistant, Steven C. Roach, Ph.D., June-Aug. 2020; Jan-Mar. 2022

  • Provided editorial and writing assistance for course book International Relations: Key Concepts.

  • Assisted with a USAID-funded Democracy, Human Rights & Governance (DRG) assessment report for South Sudan.

Washington University, Weidenbaum Center on the Economy, Government, & Public Policy

Research Assistant, Hong Min Park, Ph.D., May to Sept. 2013

  • Researched and categorized data for book project Politics Over Process: Partisan Conflict and Post-Passage Processes in the U.S. Congress


  • Workshop, “Africa and the New Institutionalism: Rents, Violence, and Elite Constraints and Incentives.” 17th Workshop on New Institutionalism (NIW), Madrid, Spain, March 2022.

  • Invited Lecture, Economics & Power in the International System.” Why We Fight and How We Fight U.S. Wars (General Tom Draude), January 2022.

  • Conference Paper, “Rethinking African Sovereignty, Again: Beyond Governmentality and Critical Theory.” Southeast Regional Seminar in African Studies (SERSAS), October 2021.

  • Conference Paper, Conceptual Perspectives on Nile Politics and the GERD. Midwestern Political Science Association (MPSA), 2021.

  • Invited Lecture, “Ethiopia’s Transitions and Contemporary Africa: Challenges and Opportunities.” Academy of Senior Professionals at Eckerd College (ASPEC), 2020.

  • Conference Paper, “The Role of Systems Thinking and Qualitative Assessment in Reorienting Development Practice.” Interdisciplinary Symposium on Qualitative Methodologies, 2020.

  • Conference Presentation, “Participatory and Interventionist Approaches to International Development: Lessons from Institutional Transitions in Ethiopia.” Community Colleges for International Development (CCID), 2020.

Service to Profession

  • Peer Reviewer (3 manuscripts), Journal of Asian and African Studies (Nov. 2021 to Present)

  • Student Representative, USF Graduate Council (Sept. 2020 to May 2021)
    Helped write and pass new policy guidelines for Holistic Admissions; evaluated Fellowship applicants.

Professional Affiliations

  • American Political Science Association (APSA)

  • African Studies Association (ASA)

  • International Studies Association (ISA)

  • Association for the Study of the Middle East and Africa (ASMEA)

  • Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA)

  • Heterodox Academy (HxA)