Kristian Hoelscher

Research Director

Kristian Hoelscher
Mobile phone: +47 40 29 79 31

Research Interests

Kristian is a senior researcher at PRIO. His research interests lie at the intersection of cities, politics, markets and conflict. He has worked in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia and Latin America, both quantitatively and qualitatively, and using interdisciplinary approaches. 

His current research covers five areas: 

  • How cities respond to crises and the practices that emerge to promote urban resilience
  • The role of urbanisation in shaping political and social change 
  • How businesses negotiate and operate in contexts of urban violence and how this supports or undermines peacebuilding and sustainable development
  • The role of the private sector in exacerbating and ameliorating social conflicts
  • The implications of the uses of digital technologies in peacebuilding and development practices

Kristian holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Oslo, an MSc. in Population and Development Studies from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a BA in Business and BSc (Hons.) in Psychology from the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.

Languages spoken:

English, Norwegian. Elementary Portuguese and Spanish.



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The following publications are specific to the Centre for the Study of Civil War. A more complete list may be available at

All Publications

Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Urdal, Henrik & Kristian Hoelscher (2012) Explaining Urban Social Disorder and Violence: An Empirical Study of Event Data from Asian and Sub-Saharan African Cities, International Interactions 38(4): 512–528.

Conference Paper

Hoelscher, Kristian; Halvard Buhaug & Henrik Urdal (2012) Does Urbanization Lead to More Peace? Rural-Urban Age Structure Differentials and Civil War, presented at The Annual convention of the International Studies Association, San Diego, CA, 1–4 April.
Urdal, Henrik & Kristian Hoelscher (2008) Urban Youth Bulges and Social Disorder: An Empirical Study of Asian and Sub-Saharan African CitiesOslo, 4–5 December.

Report - External Series

Hoelscher, Kristian; & Henrik Urdal (2009) Urban Youth Bulges and Social Disorder: An Empirical Study of Asian and Sub-Saharan African Cities, Policy Research Working Paper, 110. Washington, DC.