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Laura Skillen

Laura is part-time Executive Director at IMI. She is also a full-time PhD Researcher in International Relations, investigating political blame, emotions, and polarisation.

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Contact Details
Executive Director
International Mediation Institute
English, Spanish, Russian

Laura fills two roles at IMI, both engaging external stakeholders for fundraising and communications, and managing and developing IMI's IT infrastructure and websites. Originally from Australia, Laura is presently based most of the year in Brussels, where she is undertaking her PhD in International Relations. She brings a wealth of experience from the private and public sectors, where she has worked in corporate governance, project and portfolio management, and IT. Laura holds degrees in management and in politics and international relations, and has a Masters degree in EU External Relations. Feel free to connect with her on LinkedIn or ResearchGate.

  • 'Feels over reals: political blame as a tactic of disinformation' (Presented at EU DisInfoLab annual conference, Brussels, May 2019)
  • '"EU did it!"—blaming the EU and polarising the populace' (Presented at EUSA biennial conference in Denver Colorado, May 2019)
  • ECPR Joint Sessions workshop on Populism and Emotions (Mons Belgium, April 2019)
  • Academic support to BSIS International Conference on Populism, April 2019
  • 'Building walls with blame: Trump as "victims' champion"' (Presented at ISA-West in Los Angeles, September 2018)
  • 'Librul tears', self-victimisation, and the politics of blame under Trump (Presented at International Political Studies Association World Congress in Brisbane, July 2018)
  • Academic Adviser to BSIS International Conference on 'Digital Disruptions', April 2018
  • 'Feels over reals: Political blaming and the connection between emotions and group identity' (Presented at 'Words, Images and Ideology of Populism 3.0', University of Naples L'Orientale, February 2018)
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