Elizabeth Threlkeld is a Senior Fellow and Director of the South Asia Program at the Stimson Center. Before joining Stimson, she served as a Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State in Islamabad and Peshawar, Pakistan, and Monterrey, Mexico. Threlkeld previously worked in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq, where she managed development interventions on gender-based violence and ethno-sectarian reconciliation. She has additional work and educational experience in China, Taiwan, and Turkey, and began her career with the Asia-Pacific Security Program at the Center for a New American Security.
Threlkeld holds an MPhil in Politics and International Relations from the University of Cambridge, where she received the Hilda Richardson Studentship from Newnham College. In her dissertation, she analyzed political and security dynamics driving the development of governance reforms in Pakistan’s western border region. She received a B.A. with High Honors in Sociology and Anthropology from Swarthmore College.
Her research interests include South Asian geopolitics, ethno-nationalist conflict, and territorial disputes. She is the recipient of a Department of State Superior Honor Award, several Meritorious Honor Awards, and the Matilda W. Sinclaire Language Award. She speaks Pashto, Mandarin, and Spanish.