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Zahid Shahab Ahmed

Senior Research Fellow, Deakin University

Dr Zahid Shahab Ahmed is a researcher focusing on peace and security in South Asia and the Middle East.
His work examines the impacts of sectarianism and violent extremism on domestic, regional and global peace and security. He is also engaged in research and educational projects on countering violent extremism.
A Pakistani citizen, Dr Ahmed brings a much-needed citizen’s perspective to research on the country. He also brings rich grassroots level experience in the development sector in Asia to his research.
He has worked on numerous research assignments with Die Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Friedrich Ebert Foundation, Commonwealth Foundation, United States Institute of Peace, Transparency International, Global Integrity, and International Centre for Nonviolent Conflict during a decade long engagement with the development sector.
Dr Ahmed has published and presented papers on a wide range of issues, such as foreign policy, international organizations, Islam, peace and conflict, regionalism, and regional security. His recent papers have looked at the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, and Pakistan’s relations with Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Iran and Saudi Arabia.
Dr Ahmed received his PhD in the area of Political and International Studies from the University of New England (UNE) in Australia. He has an MA in Peace Education from the United Nations mandated University for Peace (Costa Rica), and an MA in Sociology from the University of Agriculture Faisalabad (Pakistan).
During 2013-2015, he served as Assistant Professor at the Centre for International Peace & Stability (CIPS), National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) in Islamabad. He has previously taught at University of New England (Australia), Charles Sturt University (Australia), Iqra University (Pakistan) and Allama Iqbal Open University (Pakistan).
In July 2018, he presented a paper at the 25th World Congress of Political Science in Australia.
He has an excellent record of publications. He is the author of Regionalism and Regional Security in South Asia: The Role of SAARC (Routledge, 2013). He has published in prominent academic journals, including Democratization, Third World Quarterly, Asian Studies Review, Journal of Contemporary China, Global Policy, and Middle East Policy. He is regularly invited to write opinion pieces and do media commentary.
In recognition of his research, Dr. Ahmed has received several prestigious research awards/grants, such as Mahbub ul Haq Research Award (Regional Centre for Strategic Studies, Sri Lanka); Conflict Transformation Award (WISCOMP, India).


  • 2018–present
    Senior research fellow, Deakin University