The ENFOCO Lab leverages collaborations between physical and social scientists and policymakers to produce scholarship and analysis on issues at the intersection of the environment, food security, and conflict. Since its establishment at the College of William & Mary in 2011, the lab has been home to both graduate and undergraduate researchers who have contributed to a variety of externally supported projects, including:

  • The Social Conflict Analysis Database. In collaboration with the Universities of Texas at Austin and Dallas, The Social Conflict Analysis Database (SCAD) provides data on protests, riots, strikes, inter-communal conflict, government violence against civilians, and other forms of social conflict not systematically tracked in other conflict datasets. SCAD currently includes information on social conflicts from 1990-2014, covering all of Africa and now also Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. In 2016, a full 2015 update will be released, as will comprehensive data on the Arabian Peninsula. These data inform more than 125 studies indexed on Google Scholar and have been downloaded over 4,000 times by researchers in over 90 countries. Supported by the US Department of Defense Minerva Initiative.
  • The Nonviolent Actors in Violent Contexts (NVAVC) Database. In collaboration with Erica Chenoweth, this project aims to create a collection of the first regional, systematic data set identifying nonviolent tactics used in armed conflict contexts by (1) unarmed civilians; (2) NGOs of various types; (3) IGOs; and (4) local and transnational commercial enterprises; and (5) organized labor. The data set features incident-level observations of nonviolent actions during civil conflicts in which there were at least 1,000 observed battle deaths (as defined by the Armed Conflict Data Project (UCDP) housed at Uppsala University) occurring in Africa from 1990-2012. The project includes all actions meant either to (1) tamp down violence or (2) generate political or social change, which may include spurring violent activity. Supported by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.
  • Emerging Powers and Natural Resource Governance. The 21st century commodity boom, during which real prices for most globally traded commodities more than doubled, catalyzed a gold rush–like frenzy of exploration effort, resulting in radical upward revisions of proven oil and/or natural gas reserves and mineral deposits in many “legacy” (long-time) exporters as well as discov- eries by much smaller and/or nonlegacy exporters. Countries across West Africa Africa and Southeast Asia have seen their proven energy and mineral reserves increase significantly against a backdrop of increasing US production, Iran's exit from pariah status, and Russia's oil-fueled military adventurism. This project addresses the geopolitics and economics of natural resource governance, with a particular focus on how resource wealth shapes the foreign policy of major exporters and importers. Supported by the Smith Richardson Foundation.
  • East African Fisheries and Food Security. In collaboration with One Earth Future's Secure Fisheries Program, Boston University, McGill University, and Salisbury University, this project investigates the dynamic links between the ecology of Lake Victoria (a natural system), the economy of its surrounding fisheries (a human system), and the bridge between these systems created by aquaculture, as well as the impacts of regional conflict dynamics on capture fisheries. This project led to the founding of a GIS laboratory housed at the National Fisheries Research and Resources Institute (NaFIRRI) in Jinja, Uganda, where ENFOCO researchers and affiliates (both graduate and undergraduate) have conducted numerous trainings and collaborations around fisheries management. Supported by the National Science Foundation's Coupled Natural-Human Systems (CNH) Program.
  • Demographic and Environmental Stress and Mass Atrocities Prevention. In collaboration with the Stanley Foundation, this project develops conceptual model that identifies structural and actor-contingent factors linking demographic-environmental stress to mass killings. The next steps include  comprehensive testing of the model and developing various policy interventions that might help the international community be better prepared to prevent tragic events. This project resulted in the brief Putting Environmental Stress (Back) on the Mass Atrocities Agenda, published by the Foundation in 2016. Supported by the Stanley Foundation.
ENFOCO Lab researchers Alyssa Luisi, Colleen Devlin, and Catherine Mahoney with former NaFIRRI Director John Balirwa.

ENFOCO Lab researchers Alyssa Luisi, Colleen Devlin, and Catherine Mahoney with former NaFIRRI Director John Balirwa.