Elizabeth Ferris is the World Refugee & Migration Council’s vice-president of research, and is Director of the Institute for the Study of International Migration at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and an adjunct professor in the Georgetown Law School. She has also served as Senior Advisor to the UN General Assembly’s Summit for Refugees and Migrants in New York (2016) and as expert advisor to the UN’s High-Level Panel on Internal Displacement (2019-2021).
From 2006-2015, she was a Senior Fellow and co-director of the Brookings-LSE Project on Internal Displacement where she worked to support understanding and protection of internally displaced persons. Prior to joining Brookings, she spent 20 years working in the field of humanitarian assistance, most recently in Geneva, Switzerland at the World Council of Churches. She has also served as the director of the Church World Service’s Immigration and Refugee Program, research director for the Life & Peace Institute in Uppsala, Sweden and Fulbright professor at the Universidad Autónoma de México. Her teaching experience has included positions at Lafayette College, Miami University and Pembroke State University. She has written extensively on refugee, migration and humanitarian issues, including The Politics of Protection: The Limits of Humanitarian Action (Brookings Institution Press, 2011), Consequences of Chaos: Syria’s Humanitarian Crisis and the Failure to Protect, with Kemal Kirsici (Brookings Institution Press, 2016). Her latest book, Refugees, Migration and Global Governance: Negotiating the Global Compacts, with Katharine Donato, was published by Routledge in 2019. She received her BA degree from Duke University and her MA and PhD degrees from the University of Florida.