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Current office hours: Tuesdays 12:00-13:30 

Dr Tansey is a Reader in International Relations, and joined King’s College London in 2012. He holds a masters degree in International Relations from Cambridge and obtained a DPhil from Oxford (Nuffield College) in 2007. He holds an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship at Oxford in 2007, before joining the Politics and International Relations Department at the University of Reading as a Lecturer in International Relations for five years from 2007-2012. His research focuses on the international politics of authoritarian rule, regime change, and post-conflict international state-building.


Research Interests

Dr Tansey's research interests focus on democracy, authoritarianism and post-conflict political transitions.

He is currently the Principal Investigator of an ESRC-funding research project on United Nations peacebuilding and regime change. Along with Sarah von Billerbeck (Reading), Birte Gippert (Liverpool) and Kseniya Oksamytna (KCL), they are examining the ways in which UN peacebuilding missions contribute to both democratic and non-democratic outcomes in conflict and post-conflict settings. 

He is also pursuing research on the international influences on coups and other forms of unconstitutional changes of government. This work focuses in particular on the way in which international actors have developed norms and rules that seek to constrain and punish coup leaders. It also seeks to assess the extent to which these international efforts influence the political trajectories of post-coup regimes.

From 2012-2016, Dr Tansey oversaw a €1million grant from the European Research Council on ‘The International Dimensions of Authoritarian Rule’. The project examined the ways in which international factors influence authoritarian transitions and consolidation, with a particular focus on state-driven sponsorship of authoritarian governments.   




Recent Articles

  • ‘Explaining Divergent Trends in Coups and Mutinies: The End of the Cold War and the Role of Military Agency’, with Maggie Dwyer, Security Studies,
  • ‘Enabling Autocracy? Peacebuilding and Post-Conflict Authoritarianism in the Democratic Republic of Congo’, with Sarah von Billerbeck, European Journal of International Relations, Vol.25, No.3, 2019.
  • Regional Autocratic Linkages and Regime Survival’, with Alexander Schmotz, European Journal of Political Research, 57 (3), 2018.
  • ‘Lowest Common Denominator Norm Institutionalization: The Anti-Coup Norm at the United Nations’, Global Governance, 24 (2), 2018.  
  • (with Kevin Koehler and Alexander Schmotz) ‘Ties to the Rest: Autocratic Linkages and Regime Survival’, Comparative Political Studies, Vol. 50, No. 9, 2017. 
  • The Fading of the Anti-Coup Norm’, Journal of Democracy, Vol.28, No.1, 2017.

For a full list of publications, please refer to Dr Tansey's PURE Profile and Dr Tansey's Google Scholar profile



Dr Tansey currently teaches the following modules:

  • 6SSW3024 Post-Conflict Peacekeeping (Module Convener)
  • 6SSW3019 Authoritarianism and International Politics (Module Convener)
  • 7SSWM140 Security, and Development
  • PhD Research Methods Workshop Series
  • MA Dissertation Methods Workshop Series


PhD Supervision

Dr Tansey is happy to offer supervision in the following broad areas:

  • Democratization and authoritarian politics
  • International democracy/autocracy promotion
  • International peace-building and state-building
  • Post-conflict political reconstruction