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Melissa Labonte

Associate Professor of Political Science
Associate Dean for Strategic Initiatives, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Office: 221 Keating
Phone: 718-817-4402


PhD, Political Science, Brown University
AM, International Relations, Brown University
BA, Political Science, Syracuse University


United Nations System
Humanitarian Politics
Multilateral Peace Operations
Conflict Resolution
Human Rights
West African Politics


Melissa Labonte is Associate Professor and Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Political Science at Fordham University. She received her AB in International Relations from Syracuse University and her AM and PhD 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, 2013), and her research has appeared in leading journals in international relations, including African Affairs; Disasters; Global Governance; the International Journal of Human Rights; International Studies Perspectives; and Third World Quarterly. Dr. Labonte is Vice Chair of the Academic Council on the United Nations System (ACUNS); and sub-Saharan Africa academic advisor for Freedom House. 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 carried out 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.