Political Science Student Spreads Intelligence


UCF Political Science doctoral student, Jason Christensen, was recently awarded the Florida Satellite Chapter Award by the Melbourne Chapter of the Association of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO).

AFIO is a national organization that centers on education and public outreach to build a broad constituency for intelligence as a profession. This scholarship recognizes two scholars each year who demonstrate an interest in U.S. intelligence and security and policy to help them reach their academic goals.

Christensen is currently developing his dissertation research on state fragility to aid policy and security practitioners in avoiding conditions of fragility that may be harmful to citizens. Christensen uses large-N quantitative methods on 175 countries to examine three dimensions of state fragility which include a country’s legitimacy, capacity, and violence.

The doctoral student has also been recently awarded a scholarship by UCF’s Intelligence Community Center for Academic Excellence (IC CAE) to present his research titled, “Catalysts for Catastrophe: Resource Inequality & Intrastate Conflict” at Istanbul’s Peace Conference. This scholarship assists with travel expenses.

“I’m continuously amazed by the generosity of organizations like AFIO and the opportunities provided by the Department of Political Science,” said Christensen. “There are countless challenges and sacrifices associated with completing a Ph.D. These scholarships have helped to alleviate some of the financial burden while I focus on the remaining challenges to ensure a successful graduation and later serve the United States.”

Upon completing his dissertation, Christensen looks forward to transitioning to the role of a practitioner and hopes to serve the U.S. through the military and intelligence community.

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