headshot of O’Neil

Siobhan O’Neil

Senior Fellow (Non-Resident)

PhD, Political Science, University of California, Los Angeles
MA, National Security Policy Studies, Naval Postgraduate School
MLitt, International Relations and National Security Studies, St Andrew's University

Dr Siobhan O’Neil is Senior Fellow (Non-Resident) and acts as Project Director of the Managing Exits from Armed Conflict project at the Centre for Policy Research.

Dr Siobhan O’Neil was previously Project Lead for UNU’s Children and Extreme Violence project and Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration Project Manager.

Prior to joining UNU, Dr O’Neil was a consultant at the UN Mine Action Service (UNAMS), providing strategic guidance and programme support for key mine action programmes in Mali and Palestine. Dr O’Neil has experience in both the security and intelligence fields: In the wake of the 11 September 2001 attacks, she worked for the newly created state homeland security agencies in New York and New Jersey, helping state and local governments build their capacity to detect, prevent, and recover from terrorist attacks. She later served as the analyst for domestic security and intelligence at the Congressional Research Service, identifying emerging threats and evaluating possible policy responses for Congress. During the course of her doctoral studies, Dr O’Neil worked as a research analyst at the RAND Corporation on projects pertaining to counterinsurgency transitions, insurgent motivations, and civil-military coordination during domestic chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosive attacks.

Research Interests

  • Conflict resolution
  • Counterterrorism and Countering Violent Extremism
  • Disarmament Demobilization and Reintegration
  • International Security
  • Mediation Negotiations and Post-conflict Recovery
  • Policymaking


Media Coverage

Climate-vulnerable communities are falling prey to armed groups

There are ways to break the link between climate change and instability, but they cannot be advanced without state and international support.

27 Jun 2023


Conflict Exit Data Management and Integration at the United Nations

Advancing MEAC to build the international community’s capacity to effectively support conflict exits going forward.

04 Dec 2020


No Research About Us Without Us: Participatory Policy-Oriented Research With Children and Youth Affected by Conflict

A participatory workshop model to assess the needs of children and youth impacted by conflict.

21 Jan 2020


Children and Extreme Violence: Cradled by Conflict

Understanding child recruitment by armed groups, including terrorist organizations, and identifying obstacles to releasing children from such groups.

01 Feb 2018

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