Author Archives: Nida Alahmad

About Nida Alahmad

Nida Alahmad is a Marie Curie fellow in the department of conflict and development studies at the University of Ghent. Her current work focuses on statebuilding as a form of political expertise and engineering and its connection to forms of academic knowledge production. She was a postdoctoral fellow at Georgetown University and a visiting and research fellow at the European University Institute, Florence. She taught at New York University, the University of Toronto, and the New School University. She also worked as a consultant with a number of NGOs including the Committee to Protect Journalists and the International Center for Transitional Justice. She is the recipient of a number of honors and awards, including a research fellowship from the United States Institute of Peace, and her dissertation won the New School’s Frieda Wunderlich Memorial Award.

Illuminating a State: State-Building and Electricity in Occupied Iraq

The U.S. statebuilding project in Iraq is a modern phenomenon of political engineering. Statebuilding, a set of practices and forms of knowledge that are produced and re-produced in academic and policy centers, is involved in perpetual forms of interpreting and intervening on the empirical reality in order to shape a particular order (the “state”). Under the U.S. occupation, electricity was one site of such interventions that was important for illumination and powering of machinery and the oil economy. The grid became a site for contesting Continue reading → Continue reading →