Michael Lawrence’s work applies concepts from the complexity science literature to the study of conflict and security. He focuses on the relationship between conflict, insecurity and development, particularly on the ways in which armed violence generates complex patterns of social organization. Michael’s M.A. Thesis used thermodynamics and complex adaptive systems theory to provide a systems-level analysis of the drug war in Mexico, examining how the contrasting characteristics of the state and the drug trade as systems of resource extraction affect their ability to create rival patterns of order. His work on Security Sector Reform examines the emergence of non-state and informal security architecture in countries including Afghanistan and Somalia. Michael also works on the concept of “security as resilience” in order to provide a systems-based security approach in place of the traditionally threat-centric paradigm. He holds a B.A. in Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of Toronto and an M.A. in Global Governance from the Balsillie School of International Affairs at the University of Waterloo.

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