War and peace

Ahead of her first posting as an Australian diplomat, UNSW PhD graduate Moya Collett has won a major national prize for her research on conflict and peacekeeping in West Africa.

Moya inside

UNSW PhD graduate Moya Collett has won the Australian Political Studies Association prize for best thesis for her research on conflict and peacekeeping in West Africa.

As part of her doctorate Moya conducted field research in Ghana and Sierra Leone with support from the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre and UNSW.

"It was a surprise and a great honour to win this award," Moya said. "The recognition has given me a lot of confidence in my work.

"UNSW was very generous in its financial support of my fieldwork," she said.

Her research argues that peace-builders need to consider how seemingly internal conflicts often cross national boundaries and can involve a number of regional warlords and the control of resource-based communities.

Since completing her thesis, Moya was accepted into the competitive graduate program at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). She takes up her first diplomatic posting in September as Third Secretary in the Australian Embassy in Bangkok, where she will work on a range of issues including security and counter-terrorism.

Media contact: Susi Hamilton | 9385 1583 | susi.hamilton@unsw.edu.au