Zoltán Búzás

Búzás is an Associate Professor of Global Affairs at the Keough School, and a Klau Institute Faculty Fellow. He holds a PhD in political science from the Ohio State University. His expertise includes international relations, human rights, race and international politics, and  international law and norms. Búzás’s book, Evading International Norms: Race and Rights in the Shadow of Legality, examines how states violate human rights norms in the shadow of technical legality—a process Búzás calls norm evasion.

Current Researchers

Adam Akan

Adam is a double major in political science and global affairs with a minor in theology. Around campus, Adam serves as VP of Notre Dame Model United Nations, writes for the Observer, works as a Foundations of Theology mentor, is a Sorin Fellow, works as a co-lead on a project for the Student Policy Network, and lives in Fisher Hall. Adam spent the past summer working in Senator Todd Young’s office in Washington DC and hopes to one day return to the Hill to work in policymaking after attending law school.

Chaya Figueroa

Chaya is a Sociology and Global Affairs student interested in international criminal law and human rights advocacy. Around campus, she serves as President of Notre Dame’s QuestBridge chapter and is also on the board for the Black Student Association and Shades of Ebony. Last Fall, Chaya spent a semester in Greece where she interned with an international lawyer and researched how international law can be applied to the Tigray War and genocide in East Africa. After graduation, Chaya plans to go to law school in order to become an international human rights lawyer.

Matthew Ruff

Matthew is a political science and global affairs student interested in human rights, social justice, and public policy. At Notre Dame, he is involved in multiple student government intiatives promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion. He plans to continue finding opportunities to engage in advocacy work.

Past Researchers

Nourhan Fahmy

Nourhan is an Egyptian researcher and journalist who focuses on legal and judicial issues, currently a master of global affairs student at the Keough School. As a Bassem Sabry Democracy Fellow at the Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy in Washington, DC, she conducted research on Egyptian judicial affairs. Previously, Nourhan worked for Egypt-based news outlets including Daily News Egypt, Aswat Masriya, and Mada Masr. She also worked as a researcher and archivist for the Law and Society Research Unit at the American University in Cairo (AUC). Nourhan holds a bachelor’s degree (with honors) from AUC in political science and economics and a law degree from Cairo University. 

Katherine Gottemoller

Katherine is a Political Science and Psychology student interested in how civil and human rights are understood and addressed in global contexts. At Notre Dame, she is a fellow in the God and Good Life philosophy course, member of Student Government, and Vice President of Voices of Faith gospel choir. Katherine plans to continue developing her interest in civil and human rights through further research in public policy. 

Abby Lamm

Abby Lamm is a senior at the University of Notre Dame double majoring in Political Science and Global Affairs (with a Concentration in Civil and Human Rights) and double minoring in Business Economics and Italian. Abby has been involved in the International Race and Rights Lab as a Research Assistant on its “Race, Rights, and Great Power Politics” project. She has also been involved in the Klau Institute for Civil and Human Rights as a Teaching Assistant for its course “Building an Anti-Racist Vocabulary” and as a Student Affiliate.

Thomas Musgrave

Thomas is a political science student interested in public policy, international peace, and human rights advocacy. As a project director with the Notre Dame Student Policy Network, Thomas leads a team of undergraduates in research and advocacy of fair housing legislation in Indiana. Last Fall, he spent a semester in Washington D.C., where he worked with a top congressional lobbying firm on housing, immigration, and labor issues. Thomas hopes to pursue a career in public service and law, and is passionate about finding public policy solutions to protect civil and human rights.

Gabbie Spontak

Gabbie Spontak is a senior at the University of Notre Dame studying Greek and Roman Civilization and Global Affairs with a concentration in Civil and Human Rights. Gabbie has worked at the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office as a law clerk in the Civil Rights and Torts division. At Notre Dame, Gabbie serves as the program assistant for the Gender Relations Center’s Violence Prevention Initiatives and the Coordinator of the Student Programming Committee for the Raclin Museum of Art. She hopes to attend law school and is interested in civil and human rights law.

Lia De Valenzuela

Lia is a psychology and global affairs student from Colombia interested in international studies through the lens of peace, trauma reconciliation, and human rights. She is involved in research on campus as a Kellogg International Scholar, holds the role of Academic Commissioner for the Latino Honor Society, and is a student in the Sheedy Family Program in Economy, Society, and Enterprise. After graduation, Lia looks forward to continuing to conduct research and making a difference in the lives of under-resourced communities in Colombia.