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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

The Program on Conflict and Development and the Bush School of Government and Public Service have teamed together to offer Capstone Courses

Capstone Courses

The Program on Conflict and Development (ConDev) and The Bush School of Government and Public Service—based at Texas A&M University—leverage their mutual resources to conduct research related to conflict and development around the world and share results with key decision makers. The resulting ‘Capstone Projects’ provide teams of graduate students with the opportunity to work for real-world organizations during their final semester of study. ConDev offers additional conflict-related coursework at Texas A&M as well.


Disaster Risk Reduction in El Salvador:  An Evaluation of Non-Governmental Organizations' Role and Impact

Instructor: Professor Silva Hamie

Spring 2022: Dr. Hamie's students conducted research to examine the effectiveness and impact of non-governmental organizations' operations, as well as their strategies, objectives, and challenges in implementing programs and projects in El Salvador. This was part of a Capstone Program supported by ConDev and offered at Texas A&M University, Department of International Affairs, Bush School of Government and Public Service. 


UNICEF's Hajati Cash Assistance Program for Vulnerable Children and their Families in Jordan

Instructor: Professor Silva Hamie

Spring 2020: Dr. Hamie's students examined and evaluated UNICEF's Hajati program in Jordan and developed policy recommendations. UNICEF integrated its child cash grant program within a larger package of social protection services. The Hajati Cash program is a cash-transfer program designed to support UNICEF’s larger goal of keeping vulnerable children aged between 6 and 15 in school by offering a protective measure against hazardous economic activities and harmful coping mechanisms like child labor and early marriage. The Hajati program supports formal and informal education of Syrian refugee children as well as vulnerable Jordanian children in Jordan. See the Policy Brief resulting from this Capstone by clicking on the program title above. 


The Effects of the Syrian Refugees’ Informal settlements on the Lebanese Government Policies and the Labor Market 

Instructor: Professor Silva Hamie

Spring 2019: Dr. Hamie's students traveled to Lebanon to conduct a research program seeking to understand the effects that informal Syrian refugee settlements have had on the Lebanese agricultural economy.

DR Congo: Supporting Entrepreneurship in a Region of Conflict, Limited Connectivity, and Conservation Concern: A Case Study in Beni, North Kivu, DRC

Spring 2018: ConDev partnered with The Bush School of Government and Public Service 

Understanding entrepreneurship in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Faculty: Dr. Leslie Ruyle

Europe: Refugee Crisis

Spring 2017: Dr. Ren Mu’s capstone analyzed how the implementation of certain policies could affect the ongoing refugee crisis in Europe. These capstone students presented their findings to USAID and Chemonics in DC, as well as to ConDev personnel in College Station, Texas.

Greece: Perceptions and Attitudes of Greek Students towards Refugees

Spring 2017: Dr. Silva Hamie’s capstone group examined the attitudes and perceptions of the Greek host community toward refugees. While many in Europe today subscribe to the prevailing narrative portraying refugees as an economic threat and a challenge to European culture, many Greek students opposed these ideas.

Nepal: Conflict, Earthquakes, and Schools

Spring 2016: Under the guidance of Dr. Ren Mu, Bush School Capstone students conducted two empirical studies of the impact of the 2015 earthquakes in Nepal.

Jordan: NGOs and the Syrian Refugee Crisis

Spring 2016: A team of students from Texas A&M’s Bush School of Government and Public Service, with faculty member Silva Hamie, traveled to Jordan to examine the extent to which NGOs in Jordan are instrumental in responding to the Syrian refugee crisis. This ConDev-funded capstone project addresses the NGOs’ response to the refugee crisis in Jordan amid criticism that the humanitarian response has been poor and uncoordinated (Guterres, 2015).

Ghana: Youth Unemployment

Spring 2015: A student-led research project supervised by Bush School faculty member Dr. Ren Mu in partnership with the World Bank, this analysis uses the Ghana Living Standards Survey to examine the effects of individual, household and community characteristics on various youth labor outcomes in Ghana. The study finds that some of the greatest issues among the youth labor force are related to education, community infrastructure and a pervasive gender gap.

Benin: Information and Democratic Accountability

Spring 2015: Student researchers from the Bush School conducted a large-scale field experiment concerning the 2015 elections in Benin. Their examination focused on determining which types of information and delivery mechanisms have the greatest impact on electoral accountability.

DRC: North Kivu Malnutrition

Spring 2014: ConDev partnered with The Bush School of Government and Public Service to conduct research on malnutrition in North Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). This project laid the foundation for long-term cooperation between the Bush School, ConDev and institutions in the DRC and other fragile and conflict-affected nations.

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