Fordham University            The Jesuit University of New York

The International Humanitarian Affairs Major

Meet the Faculty

Brendan Cahill

Brendan Cahill is the Executive Director of the Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs (IIHA) and its partner organization, the Center for International Humanitarian Cooperation (CIHC). As such, he is directly responsible for all worldwide administrative and financial issues pertaining to those organizations. He has run programs in New York, Geneva, Cairo, Dublin, Istanbul, Barcelona, Penang, and Nairobi. He received his BA from Colby College and his MBA from Fordham University. Besides his work for the IIHA and CIHC, Brendan sits on the boards of the American Irish Historical Society, the Society of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, and the Point Lookout Civic Association. He is a Trustee of The Helen Hamlyn Trust in London and a Director of the KMC Foundation in New York. He is married with four children and lives in New York City and Point Lookout, New York.

Jeff Flynn

Jeff Flynn is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Fordham University. He received his BA in Philosophy and Anthropology from the University of Notre Dame and his PhD in Philosophy from Northwestern University. He works mainly in social and political philosophy, with a particular focus on global issues related to human rights and humanitarianism. He is the author of Reframing the Intercultural Dialogue on Human Rights: A Philosophical Approach (Routledge 2014) and is currently at work on a new book on humanitarianism.

Amir Idris

Amir Idris is Chair of the Department of African and African American Studies and Professor of African History and Politics. Dr. Idris was born and raised in Sudan and educated in Sudan, Egypt, and Canada. He received his Ph.D. in African History from Queen's University, Canada, in 2000. He was a post-doctoral fellow at the Institute of African Studies, Columbia University, New York City (2000-2001). His teaching and research interests focus on the history and politics of colonialism, on slavery and race, and on postcolonial citizenship in Northeast and Central Africa. Among his recent publications include Identity, Citizenship, and Violence in Two Sudans: Re-imagining a common Future (2013), Conflict and Politics of Identity in Sudan (2005), and Sudan's Civil Wars: Slavery, Race, and Formational Identities (2001), and he has also published numerous book chapters.

Melissa Labonte

Melissa Labonte is Associate Professor of Political Science at Fordham University. She received her A.B. in International Relations from Syracuse University and her A.M and Ph.D. in Political Science from Brown University. Her research and teaching interests include the United Nations system, humanitarian politics, peacebuilding, multilateral peace operations, conflict resolution, human rights, and West African politics. She is the author of Human Rights and Humanitarian Norms, Strategic Framing, and Intervention: Lessons for the Responsibility to Protect (London: Routledge, 2012), and her research has been published in leading journals in international relations, including African Affairs; Global Governance: A Review of Multilateralism and International Organizations; the International Journal of Human Rights; and Third World Quarterly.

Dr. Labonte serves on the Board of Directors of Fordham’s Center for International Policy Studies and as Vice Chair of the Academic Council on the United Nations System (ACUNS). She has conducted research with the Office of the President of the UN General Assembly on issues including Security Council reform, the Global Financial Crisis, and the Responsibility to Protect; and has also completed field work analyzing ongoing peacebuilding in Sierra Leone, which forms the basis for her current book project. In 2013 Dr. Labonte was the recipient of the Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in the Social Sciences, and the Fordham Undergraduate Research Journal’s Faculty Mentor Award in the Social Sciences.

Hector Lindo-Fuentes
Dr. Lindo-Fuentes has published books on the economic history of Central America, on education and on the politics of memory in El Salvador (see book section). His most recent book, co-authored with Erik Ching, is Modernizing Minds in El Salvador: Education Reform and the Cold War, 1960-1980 published in 2012 by the University of New Mexico Press. He is member and past director of Fordham University’s interdisciplinary program in Latin American and Latino Studies ( At the undergraduate level he teaches core courses in Latin American history, as well as upper-level electives on Central America, the history of education in Latin America, and Latin America and the U.S. At the graduate level he teaches "Latin America and the U.S.," "20th-Century Latin America," and "Education and the State in Latin America." He has taught courses at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, the University of California at Santa Barbara, UCLA, Columbia University, and universities in El Salvador, Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

He is member of the editorial board of Fordham University Press, is past president of the seven-member national commission for accreditation of higher education institutions of El Salvador and advises the Instituto de Historia de Nicaragua y Centroamérica. He was president of the Board of Trustees of the Center for Regional Research of Mesoamerica (1998-2002).

Alexander van Tulleken

Alexander van Tulleken, M.D. is the Helen Hamlyn Senior Fellow at the Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs (IIHA).  As such, he is directly responsible for teaching all undergraduate courses that comprise the International Humanitarian Affairs Minor, and serves as the Academic Director for the Masters in International Humanitarian Action.  Dr Alexander van Tulleken has worked for MDM, Merlin and the World Health Organizations in humanitarian crises around the world. His most recent mission was in 2010 in Darfur running health clinics in the embattled Jebel Marra Region. He has a diploma in Tropical Medicine, a Diploma in International HumanitarianAssistance and a Master's in Public Health from Harvard. He is an Honorary Lecturer in Conflict and Migration at University College London and is currently editing the first edition of the Oxford Handbook of Humanitarian Medicine.

Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs
33 West 60th St., Suite 804 New York, NY 10023
Phone: (212)-636 6294 Fax: (212)-636 7060 Email:


Site  | Directories
Submit Search Request