Barbara F. Walter's love of peace led her to become an expert in civil wars, the conflicts that last the longest and are the hardest to resolve.

Why you should listen

A specialist in international security and professor of international affairs at the University of California, San Diego, Barbara F. Walter has dedicated her career to studying war. Her research on civil wars, domestic terror and violent extremism has led her to interview members of Hamas in the West Bank, ex-Sinn Fein members in Northern Ireland and former FARC members in Colombia. It has also led her to experience some dicey situations, including being interrogated by members of Myanmar's military leadership and threatened with a machine gun by an Israeli soldier.

Walter previously served on the US Central Intelligence Agency's Political Instability Task Force, helping predict where civil wars would break out around the world. She is a permanent member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a consultant for the World Bank, the United Nations and the US Departments of Defense and State. She is also a member of the National Academy of Sciences and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her most recent book is the New York Times bestseller How Civil Wars Start: And How to Stop Them.

Barbara F. Walter’s TED talk

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Live from TED2023

Leaping boldly into new global realities: Notes on Session 3 of TED2023

April 18, 2023

From climate change to aging to geopolitics, Session 3 of TED2023 surveyed big issues with worldwide implications. The event: Talks from Session 3 of TED2023: Possibility, hosted by TED current affairs curator Whitney Pennington-Rodgers When and where: Tuesday, April 18, 2023, at the Vancouver Convention Centre in Vancouver, BC, Canada Speakers: Jennifer D. Sciubba, Piyachart Phiromswad, […]

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