INCM Welcomes New Director


KENNESAW, Ga. (Aug 10, 2015) — New INCM Ph.D. director in sync with consolidation, conflict management changes

KENNESAW, Ga. (Aug. 10, 2015)—The arrival of Joseph G. Bock as the new director of the Ph.D. program in International Conflict Management (INCM) coincides with a series of changes — monumental and incremental — at Kennesaw State University and within the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Bock is an educator, administrator and scholar whose most recent book, “The Technology of Nonviolence: Social Media and Violence Prevention,” and journal articles heralds the nexus of conflict management, peace building and technology. He said he is excited about the potential of the newly consolidated Kennesaw State University.

“There is a huge hunger for graduates who know how to use social media, crowdsourcing and internet-based platforms as tools in managing conflict,” said Bock, who joins Kennesaw State from the University of Notre Dame’s Eck Institute for Global Health, where he was director of program development and teaching professor, following his tenure at Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, where he was director of external relations. “This consolidation, enhances significantly our ability to build teams of social scientists and humanities experts, on the one hand, with engineers, architects, computer scientists, and mapping experts, on the other. Such an array of expertise will help us offer greater combinations of ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ skills.”

As the program’s second full-time director, Bock will help guide the continued development of the Ph.D. in INCM, Kennesaw State’s first Ph.D. program when it launched in 2010. This fall the program will welcome its sixth cohort. To date, nine students have earned the Ph.D in INCM and 49 students will be matriculating in the program this fall.

Bock’s initial focus will be to assist with a facelift now underway for conflict management studies and scholarship at Kennesaw State. Beginning this fall, the Center for Conflict Management (CCM), Masters in Conflict Management (MSCM), and Ph.D. program in International Conflict Management (INCM) will together occupy a new space on the second floor of the Math and Statistics Building. This fall the program also will begin its new role as editor of the Journal of Peacebuilding and Development (JPD)under the editorship of Maia Carter Hallward, associate professor of political science, international affairs and international conflict management.

“There are many exciting things happening in conflict management at KSU,” said Robin Dorff, Dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, where the Ph.D. program resides. “Dr. Bock could not be arriving at a better time. He brings experience and leadership skills that will help shape the future of the program and together with others the future of all of our conflict management activities.”

Dorff also noted Bock’s background as an academic and practitioner, and the network of contacts and relationships he brings with him, as especially valuable to the program and its students.

“I think Joe will help energize and push all of us—faculty, students, and administrators—to develop further and take all of our conflict management programs to new levels,” Dorff said.

For his part, Bock said he was attracted to Kennesaw State because of the “vibrant and dynamic atmosphere” and a genuine sense that the University embraces entrepreneurial initiatives, which he says is important in enhancing the ability to address the “wicked problem of persistent violence in our troubled world.”

“I am eager to work as a catalyst in pulling together various units of the University in creating a School of Conflict Management,” Bock said. “I am especially excited to help all of us keep our eyes on the overall goal of making the world a better place by putting our research findings into practice, by sharing findings at conferences and workshops, and, most importantly, using them on the ground where tension is high. That’s where we can help leaders navigate conflict so that it brings constructive rather than destructive change.”

Bock brings an extensive background to his new role. He holds a Ph.D. in international relations, with emphases in economic development policy and comparative foreign policy from the School of International Service at American University in Washington, D.C. Prior to his tenure at Notre Dame, he served as executive director of the Center For Peace and Global Citizenship at Haverford College in Pennsylvania and at the Secure World Foundation in Colorado. He served as an executive of the American Refugee Committee in Minneapolis, overseeing 13 country programs in Africa, Asia and the Balkans. With Catholic Relief Services, he directed development education in Baltimore, and was country representative for operations for Jerusalem, the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Pakistan. As a candidate for the U.S. Congress from Indiana’s 2nd District in 2013-14, Bock successfully won a four-way Democratic primary election but lost to his Republican opponent.

In addition to his book on the technology of nonviolence published in 2012 by MIT Press, Bock is author of “Sharpening Conflict Management: Religious Leadership and the Double-Edged Sword” (Praeger, 2001) and “The White House Staff and the National Security Assistant: Friendship and Friction at the Water’s Edge “ (Greenwood Press, 1987). He also is author of more than 25 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on international affairs, economic development, national security policy, peace and the mitigation and management of conflict.

— Sabbaye McGriff