Professor of Political Science and Legal Studies, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
“Jim is a leading expert on human rights and humanitarian affairs who has pioneered the study of human rights public opinion in the Global South. He is a wide-ranging thinker, a versatile analyst, an eclectic methodologist, who moves easily between the academic and practitioner worlds. A terrific listener who resolves conflicts with ease, he is also a delightful colleague with high interpersonal intelligence.
We first worked together on a study of the human security network funded by a major NSF grant. Jim brought to the table an entire network of global south data and an innovative methodology for sampling transnational networks through distinct nodes. He also brought to the project a level of quantitative sophistication and experiential knowledge from his practitioner days and consulting work in the NGOs world that had us all thinking more deeply, and he kept the team laughing. He was indispensable in the development of my third book, and we published an article together as well.
Beyond our collaborations I know known Jim as a dedicated humanitarian himself, highly engaged in the global health arena and always looking at issues from the perspective of the most vulnerable. He is simply a pleasure to work with.”
Professor of Political Science, Barnard College, Columbia University; Director, The Harriman Institute at Columbia University
“Jim is one of the world’s leading experts on global non-for-profit management and operations, including organizational dynamics, funding pressures, membership and public opinion. He has pioneered new methods that have revealed new insights into our understanding of NGOs across many different regional settings and his work is highly touted in academia and the policy world. Experienced, ethical and a great listener, Jim is unsurpassed in his ability to translate his groundbreaking research into practical recommendations for the needs of donors and organizations that seek to manage complex challenges and operational environments.”
New York Times columnist for global affairs
“I’ve gotten to know Jim over the past decade and, in the course of wide-ranging discussions of American and Middle Eastern politics, have found him to be a man of remarkable intellect and absolute integrity, with a deep commitment to global human rights. Jim brings unusual lucidity and concision to his research, illuminating difficult subjects with his ability to see and express the essence of an issue. He is a kind, gracious and generous man, whose friendship is important to me.”
Profesora Asociada, FLACSO-Mexico
“Jim and I worked together on a tri-national course on global development issues during his one-year Visiting Professor post at CIDE in Mexico City. We built a course across time and space with students from our home university programs in Mexico and the US, and students at an allied school in Israel.
Beyond his impeccable grasp of course content (non-state actors, international development, humanitarian intervention, international humanitarian law) and expertise on the cross-national case studies we used, I was continually struck by his ability to package content creatively, always looking for ways to push students to engage the material beyond the average classroom format.
Jim consistently came up with innovative solutions to problems of timing and calendars as they arose, met technological challenges with grace, and overall directed the class in a way that not only met all of the educational quality bars, but was also simply totally fun. In that year, Jim served as a sounding board for many of my pending research ideas, made himself available for conversations with me and many others on career choices and interests, and his visit overall strengthened our International Relations Division as an institution.
He is a solid academic, skilled researcher, a dependable and collaborative-minded colleague, and in my experience, our ongoing contact has only strengthened my own work.”
Lawyer at the Open Society Justice Initiative, Nigeria
“Jim was editor of Open Global Rights when a friend introduced the platform to me in 2013. He edited most of the articles I wrote for them. His thoughtful, probing and engaging approach to contributors’ writings was as refreshing as it was revealing of the kind of thorough, deeply passionate and exceptionally gifted researcher and academic he is. When Jim commits to a project, you can be sure he will give it undivided attention.”
Country Director, Amnesty International, Nigeria
“Jim is a visionary and aspirational leader. In the years we worked closely together on open global rights (a platform he created), I learned a lot from him about how to be patient, review after review, and to always keep an eye on the goal of making knowledge accessible to as many people as possible. He treated everyone with respect, was very professional, and dedicated to the editorial team and the contributors. Working with Jim was easy and enjoyable.”
Professor of International Affairs at the University of Ottawa’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. Former Senior Advisor on Global Affairs and Defense to the Prime Minister of Canada
“Jim is one of the brightest people I know. I had the pleasure of working with him on a joint project for the Canadian foreign ministry. He delivered an excellent report – concise, clear, well-researched, and relevant. Jim has a remarkable ability to think through research problems, dig up and analyze the evidence, and present the results in a clear and compelling way. I really enjoyed our collaboration.”