The Chair of Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution enables The Ohio State University to pursue in-depth studies of nonviolent resolutions to conflict as well as other peace-related issues through the Peace Studies Program housed at the Mershon Center.
The Chair of Peace Studies, an initiative of the Ohio Council of Churches, was established in 2003 with $1.25 million in gifts to the university from Erie and Orlyss Sauder and Sauder Woodworking Co. of Archbold; the Southern Ohio Episcopal Diocese Procter Fund; congregations of Church of the Brethren, Mennonite and Friends; and faculty, staff and numerous friends.
The current Chair of Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution is Christopher Gelpi, who holds a joint appointment with the Department of Political Science. He began at Ohio State in January 2013.
Gelpi's primary research interests are the sources of international militarized conflict and strategies for international conflict resolution. He is currently engaged in research on American public opinion and the use of military force, and on statistical models for forecasting military conflict and transnational terrorist violence.
He is author of The Power of Legitimacy: The Role of Norms in Crisis Bargaining (Princeton, 2002), co-author (with Peter D. Feaver) of Choosing Your Battles: American Civil-Military Relations and the Use of Force (Princeton, 2004), and co-author (with Peter Feaver and Jason Reifler) of Paying the Human Costs of War: American Public Opinion and Casualties in Military Conflicts (Princeton, 2009).
Gelpi is also serving as director of the Mershon Center.