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Dr Aisha Ahmad

Associate Professor
Department of Political Science
University of Toronto

Chair of the Board
Women in International Security-Canada

Dr Aisha Ahmad
Select Publications from Dr Aisha Ahmad


1. Jihad & Co.: Black Markets and Islamist Power (Oxford University Press, 2017).

2. “Canada and the World: Managing Insecurity in a Changing Global Order,” in ed. Carolyn Hughes Tuohy, Sophie Borwein, Peter Loewen and Andrew Potter, Policy Transformations in Canada: Is the Past Prologue?, (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2018).

3. “Smuggling, Survival, and Civil War Economies” in ed. Florian Weigand and Max Gallien, The Routledge Handbook of Smuggling (forthcoming 2021).


1.  “The Security Bazaar: Business Interests and Islamist Power in Civil War Somalia,” in International Security, Vol. 39, No. 3 (Winter 2014/15), pp. 89-117.

2. “Going Global: Islamist Competition in Contemporary Civil Wars,” in Security Studies, Vol. 25, No. 2 (Spring 2016), pp. 353-384.

3. “The Long Jihad: The Boom-Bust Cycle Behind Jihadist Durability” in Journal of Global Security Studies, (January 2021).


1. “Why jihadist insurgencies persist” Open Canada May 23, 2018.

2. “Canada’s deadly new peacekeeping mission to Mali” Globe and Mail 
March 29, 2018.

3. “Somalia’s Resurgence: Mogadishu attack masks rising tide of Somali unity” Open Canada October 18, 2017.


1. The business behind jihadist power: Q&A with Professor Aisha Ahmad

2. Canada’s new ISIS mission

3. The Age of Heroes | Aisha Ahmad | TEDxUTSC


Aisha Ahmad is an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Toronto, the Director of the Islam and Global Affairs Initiative and a Senior Researcher of the Global Justice Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, and the Chair of the Board of Directors of Women in International Security-Canada.

She is currently a Senior Fellow at Massey College and a Fellow at Trinity College, University of Toronto, and was formerly an International Security Fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School.

Dr Ahmad is the author of Jihad & Co.: Black Markets and Islamist Power (Oxford University Press, 2017), which awarded both the distinguished 2017 Mershon Center Furniss Award for the best new book in international and national security, and the 2018 Best Book in Comparative Politics Prize by the Canadian Political Science Association.

Her article, “The Security Bazaar,” published in the flagship journal International Security, won the 2017 Best Security Article Award from the International Studies Association.

She has conducted fieldwork in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Mali, Iraq, and Lebanon, and has advised both government and international organizations on global security policies. Her research uncovers the economic drivers of conflict in war zones across the modern Muslim world.

Why learn with Dr Aisha Ahmad?

When you sign up for Dr Aisha Ahmad’s ExpertTrack, you get to learn with an expert in her field with a passion for the subject. Dr Ahmad is the 2018 winner of the Northrop Frye Award of Excellence for outstanding contributions to co-curricular learning and pedagogical innovation; this prize is awarded to one faculty member per year, across all three campuses, all disciplines, and academic ranks at the University of Toronto.

She also won the 2018 University of Toronto, Scarborough Campus (UTSC) Assistant Professor Award for outstanding contributions to undergraduate teaching at the Scarborough campus.

In 2017, Dr Ahmad was named one of Toronto’s “most inspiring women” of 2017 in Post City Magazine. In 2018, she was named the 2018 “Muslim Woman of the Year” at the Muslim Awards of Excellence MAX gala, which celebrates outstanding achievements by a Muslim Canadian in their field.

Quotes from Dr Aisha Ahmad
[wcp_testimonials_outer arrows=”true” slidestoshow=”2″ slidestoscroll=”2″ arrows_color=”#ffffff” text_color=”#ffffff” title_color=”#ffffff” company_color=”#ffffff”][wcp_testimonials_inner title=”– Dr Aisha Ahmad”]”Many people mistakenly think that conflicts ‘over there’ are not connected to our everyday lives ‘over here’. But the truth is, our world is small, and suffering in faraway places can have extraordinary ripple effects across the globe.”[/wcp_testimonials_inner][wcp_testimonials_inner title=”– Dr Aisha Ahmad”]”There are always times when our moral centre is challenged…but in these moments, it is our responsibility, as those who have inherited the freedom that was given to us, to respond to that.“[/wcp_testimonials_inner][wcp_testimonials_inner title=”– Dr Aisha Ahmad”]”And so, it falls to you, once again, to save the world. It falls to us. Now is our time. This is now the time for those people who continue to hold and believe in the ideals to stand up for freedom. “[/wcp_testimonials_inner][/wcp_testimonials_outer]

The Age of Heroes | Aisha Ahmad | TEDxUTSC

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