Center for Conflict Studies Knowledge as Action, Action as Change

Associate Members

Meet our experts who generously give us their time and commitment:


Dr. Catherine ("Cat") Ashcraft, Senior Researcher, Peacebuilders Fellowship

Catherine (“Cat”) Ashcraft is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Environmental Studies Program at Middlebury College, specializing in international environmental governance, negotiation, and dispute resolution, particularly as relates to water. Having worked as a mediator and helped facilitate international water dialogues, Cat combines teaching environmental science and policy with learning about applied negotiation theory and skills needed to solve environmental problems. Cat has conducted extensive field research in Europe and Africa. Cat is the author of several negotiation simulations, including Indopotamia: Negotiating boundary-crossing water conflicts, used for teaching water diplomacy concepts and skills, and co-author of How to Reach Fairer and More Sustainable Agreements in Negotiate, published by IUCN. Her Ph.D. research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology focused on adaptive governance of international river basins. Cat holds a Master’s in Environmental Science from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania.


Dr. Ann Clarke, Senior Researcher, Peacebuilders Fellowship

Ann Clarke is an environmental mediator associated with Silicon Valley Mediation Group.  Prior to joining SVMG in 2013, Dr. Clarke held several positions within NASA Headquarters and NASA Ames Research Center, Silicon Valley, including as Executive Officer to the NASA Chief Scientist. She began her Federal career in the Policy Analysis Branch at the USDA Forest Service. During her Federal career, she mediated a wide range of difficult policy issues among regulators, scientists, engineers, and managers and across agencies.  She earned her doctorate and a master’s degree in Forestry and Environmental Science from Yale and her J.D. with a Natural Resources certificate from the U. of New Mexico.  She is licensed in Washington, D.C. She also has a joint M.S. in geography and education from the U. Oregon and a B.A. in geology from the Colorado College. Her several awards include the FAA’s Medal for raising awareness of Native American concerns. She is past President of the Federal Bar Association’s D.C. Chapter, and Board member and past Chair of the FBA’s Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources Law Section.   Her current interests are in water policy, forestry, wildlife, energy development, sea level rise, climate risk, and resilience.

Laura Goodman

Laura Goodman, Managing Editor, Pathfinder Series

Ms. Goodman received her bachelor’s degree in English Literature from the State University of New York at Buffalo, and her master’s degree from the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (now known as the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution) at George Mason University. She is a writer, editor, and English teacher.


Dr. Tonson John Sango, Senior Researcher, Peacebuilders Fellowship

Tonson Sango is an expert in analysing protracted international and inter-communal conflicts. He gained a Masters and PhD in International Conflict Analysis from the University of Kent, Canterbury, United Kingdom. Tonson also studied History and International Studies at Babcock University, Nigeria. He has taught International Relations and Government to students at the University of Kent, CATS College Canterbury and London Foundation Campus, Birkbeck College, University of London. Tonson conducted extensive interviews with people in conflict communities in Nigeria as a visiting researcher at the Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Abuja. His research was part funded by the Institute for Historical Research, the Sidney Perry Foundation and Churches Together in Britain and Ireland. He is also the Director of Operations at Books To Africa International, a non-governmental organisation in the United Kingdom that is working to improve the standard of education in African countries.