Head of Asia-Pacific Unit
Albrecht Schnabel is Head of the Asia-Pacific Unit at the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF). He also serves as Senior Fellow in DCAF's Policy and Research Division, and as Research Associate at the Global Health Centre (GHC) of the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies. From 2008-16 he served as Senior Fellow in DCAF's former Research Division, where he headed the Security Institutions Programme and the Human Security and SSR Programme.
Albrecht's research and operational work focusses on security sector governance and reform (SSG/R), particularly its development and post-conflict dimensions, with a regional focus on Southeast Asia and the broader Asia-Pacific region. Having provided training and advisory services for the United Nations, regional organisations and Swiss government agencies during the past two decades, since 2011 he has primarily been engaged in DCAF's operational advisory and capacity-building activities in Southeast Asia, particularly in Myanmar (police reform), Thailand (media training), Philippines (SSR, DDR and peace processes) and Cambodia (SSG/R and external oversight), as well as in national and regional multi-stakeholder dialogues and parliamentary capacity-building on SSG/R.
His research and publications have focused on ethnic conflict, human security, armed nonstate actors, conflict prevention and management, peacekeeping, post-conflict peacebuilding, peace processes, health security, and conceptual, urban and development dimensions of SSG/R. He currently co-leads the GHC-DCAF project on "The Security Sector and Global Health Crises" (since 2015), and serves as an associated member in the Swiss Network for International Studies (SNIS) projects on "How to Break the Gridlock in Global Health Governance" (2015-17, with GHC/IHEID) and "Civil Wars and State Formation: The Social Construction of Order and Legitimacy During and After Violent Conflictâ (2016-18, with the University of Geneva).
Before joining DCAF, Albrecht was a Senior Research Fellow at the Swiss Peace Foundation "swisspeace" in Bern, where he was responsible for the research programme on human security (HUSEC) and the Bern-based team of the early warning programme FAST International (2003-2008). From 1998-2003 he lived in Tokyo, Japan, where he worked for the United Nations as an Academic Officer in the Peace and Governance Programme of the United Nations University. Previously he served as an Instructor in the Department of Political Studies at Queen's University (1994); Assistant Professor at the American University in Bulgaria (1995-96) and the Central European University (1996-1998); Visiting Research Fellow at the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy at the University of Hamburg (1997); Visiting Lecturer at Aoyama Gakuin University (2002-03); Lecturer in International Organizations and Conflict Management at the Institute of Political Science at the University of Bern (2004-2008); and Visiting Lecturer for the Master of Advanced Studies in Security Policy and Crisis Management programme at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zürich (ETH) (2010-2014). He has recently been serving as an external faculty member on regional security sector development courses at the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies in Honolulu (since 2011) and as co-director of an annual course on International Relations, Democratisation and Human Security for young professionals from Myanmar at GCSP/DCAF in Geneva (since 2013).
Further experiences include military service in the German Federal Armed Forces (1985-86), participation as an election observer in two OSCE election monitoring missions in Bosnia-Herzegovina (1997), training and teaching for the UN System Staff College course on Early Warning and Early Response (1999-2002) and a term as President of the International Association of Peacekeeping Training Centres (2001-02).
Albrecht studied comparative politics and international relations at the University of Munich, the University of Nevada, and Queen's University, Canada, where he received his PhD in Political Studies in 1995.
Senior Advisor (Police Reform), Asia-Pacific Unit (Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar)
Everett Summerfield is a member of DCAF’s Asia-Pacific Unit and the Key Expert Police Reform for the 2016-2021 EU-funded MYPOL project “Support to the Reform of the Myanmar Police Force.” Everett holds one of two permanent long-term consultant positions based in Myanmar as part of DCAF’s contribution to this project. He was also involved as the governance lead in the first EU project to support the reform of the Myanmar Police Force (2013-2015).
Everett is a former police officer with 39 years of service for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), retiring as a Chief Superintendent in early 2014. During his time at RCMP, he has served in a range of duties and commands in various locations throughout Canada (Alberta, Northwest Territories and what is now Nunavut, Nova Scotia, Ontario and Saskatchewan) as well as liaison officer and advisor with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. His international service has included a posting with the United Nations Mission in Kosovo as Head of Training (1999-2000), a secondment to DCAF as the Manager of its Police Program (2009-2011), and two tours of duty in Afghanistan – the first with the European Union Police Mission in Afghanistan as Head of Program Directorate (2008-2009), and the second as the Canadian Police Commander in Kabul, Afghanistan, with responsibility for all Canadian civilian police programs and personnel in Afghanistan (2011-2012).
Prior to joining the RCMP in 1974 he served in the Canadian Armed Forces for six years, with the Military Police and Canadian Airborne Regiment at various locations in Canada and Cyprus (1974). He has a diverse background in Operational Policing, Operational Support, Training, Administration, Project Management, Human Resource Management, International Policing and Senior Executive Management.
Senior Advisor (Legal Framework and Parliament), Asia-Pacific Unit (Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar)
John Davidson is a member of DCAF’s Asia-Pacific Unit and the Key Expert Legal Framework and Parliament for the 2016-2021 EU-funded MYPOL project “Support to the Reform of the Myanmar Police Force.” John holds one of two permanent long-term consultant positions based in Myanmar as part of DCAF’s contribution to this project.
John is a specialist on security sector reform and manager of foreign aid projects with more than 25 years of experience. He has worked as a parliamentary and judicial sector capacity building expert and legal educator, with extensive experience in Central Asia, the Balkans, Ukraine and the Caucasus region. He has led technical teams of varying experience and background on large-scale Rule of Law programmes, namely in Turkmenistan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Armenia and Kazakhstan. He led two large-scale parliamentary strengthening programmes for USAID in Kyrgyzstan and Kosovo, and worked to introduce legal reforms as a team leader for more than three years in both Kazakhstan and Armenia.
John has a strong understanding of the politics and economics of developing countries, having completed a Ph.D. on international politics and economics at Johns Hopkins University’s School for Advanced International Studies (1987), as well as a Juris Doctorate in Law at the College of William and Mary Marshall-Wythe School of Law (1994). John Davidson is a graduate of Yale University, where he studied history and social sciences.
Project Officer, Asia-Pacific Unit
Kevin Socquet-Clerc is a Project Officer in the Asia-Pacific Unit at DCAF.
Kevin is involved in the management and implementation of the Asia-Pacific Unit’s activities in Southeast Asia, including the maintenance of a network of national partner institutions and experts covering the Southeast Asian sub-region.
Prior to joining DCAF, he worked for over 10 years managing various humanitarian aid and development programmes in the field. From 2004 to 2009, he worked for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) as an interpreter and Acting Head of Sub-office in Myanmar and Thailand. From 2009 to 2013 he worked for different international NGOs on protection, advocacy, adult education and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WaSH) in Myanmar, Thailand and Liberia. From 2013 to 2015 he worked for the UNHCR as Shelter and Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) Cluster Coordinator. Since 2013, he has been a member of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)’s Norwegian Capacity (NORCAP) roster as a CCCM expert. Between 2015 and 2018 he reduced his field activities to help raise his two children, apart from one year as adviser to the Greek Ministry of Interior, supporting the alignment of refugee and migrant receiving facilities on Lesvos Island with international standards.
He holds a graduate degree in Southeast Asian languages and civilizations from the “Institut National des Langues et Civilisations Orientales (INALCO)” in Paris, focusing on Myanmar language and history. He has subsequently carried out post-graduate work in Myanmar on the country’s 19th century history and for one year attended the Institute of Foreign Languages (IFL) in Yangon. He speaks fluent English, Burmese and French.
Melissa Silverstein is an Administrative Assistant in the Asia-Pacific Unit and the Policy and Research Division at the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF). She provides administrative assistance to the Unit, including general administration, finance, communication and publication support.
Prior to joining DCAF, she has held various positions in the capacity of administrative assistant in the private sector (bank, hotel, medical practice, law firm). Melissa is bilingual in English and French.
Project Officer, Asia-Pacific Unit
Rohit Karki is a Project Officer in the Asia-Pacific Unit at DCAF.
Rohit is involved in the management and implementation of the Asia-Pacific Unit’s activities in South Asia, including the maintenance of a network of national partner institutions and experts covering the South Asian sub-region.
Prior to joining DCAF, Rohit worked for ten years on security sector governance and peacebuilding issues, while working in NGOs, academic and policy institutes in Nepal. Rohit has extensive experience in managing and coordinating post-conflict peacebuilding projects, focusing on child soldiers’ reintegration and enhancing good governance in the security sector, while working closely with state security actors (particularly the Nepali police and armed police forces) and non-state actors (ex-Maoist combatants, including child soldiers and other armed groups). In 2017 Rohit participated in the ‘Study of United States (SUSI) Scholars Program on US National Security Policymaking’ at the University of Delaware. He has also taught courses in the fields of international relations and security studies at Tribhuvan University, Nepal and is the author of various publications on small states’ security and foreign policy challenges in international affairs, with a focus on Nepal.
Rohit received his MA in Asian Studies from the Australian National University (ANU), Canberra (2011), with a thesis on “The Double Edged Sword: The Role of Nuclear Weapons in South Asia”. In 2006 he graduated from St. Xavier’s College in Kathmandu with a BA in Social Work.
Project Officer, Asia-Pacific Unit
Upasana Garoo is a Project Officer in the Asia-Pacific Unit at DCAF.
Upasana is involved in the management and implementation of the Asia-Pacific Unit’s activities in South Asia, including the maintenance of a network of national partner institutions and experts covering the South Asian sub-region.
Prior to joining DCAF, Upasana held various positions with the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations. In the role of Security Sector Reform Advisor with the UN Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT), Upasana was involved in a comprehensive review of the security sector and in the drafting of a new national security policy and legislation that provided for civilian oversight of the security institutions. In collaboration with UNDP’s Bureau of Crisis Prevention and Recovery in Timor-Leste, she was involved in the design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation of a range of activities addressing: parliamentary and public oversight of security institutions; border management; disaster response management and civil protection; and regulation of private security companies. As a Political Liaison Officer with the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA), Upasana engaged with various military and civilian stakeholders in support of implementation of a Joint Border Verification Monitoring Mechanism, the establishment of a demilitarized border zone and conflict mitigation strategy and early warning assessment of annual Missierya migration from Sudan to South Sudan.
Upasana has worked closely with the UN Inter-Agency SSR Task Force (IASSRTF) in supporting effective and coherent SSG/SSR support to the Government of Timor-Leste. Her experience has involved supporting national governments, national non-state actors, bilateral donors, and multilateral organizations such as the European Union, the African Union, East Africa’s Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), and ASEAN. Upasana’s work has focused on supporting oversight and management mechanisms at both public and private levels and to reinforce regional frameworks in the field of Security Sector Governance.
Other professional experience includes work on justice sector reform in India, focusing on access to justice and reform of the correction facilities in Delhi, and gender policy and flagship publication work with UNICEF in New York. Recently, she has been involved with teaching governance at the Ecole Polytechnique de Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), and in research addressing the private security industry in India.
Upasana holds an MA in Law and Diplomacy (International Security Studies and Human Security) from the Fletcher School at Tufts University, an LLM (International Law and Human Rights) from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and an LLB and a BA in Sociology from the University of Delhi.
Project Officer, Asia-Pacific Unit
Will Bennett is a Project Officer in the Asia-Pacific Unit at the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF), where he contributes to the Unit’s work in the Asia-Pacific region through research, analysis, advice and fund-raising.
Prior to joining DCAF, Will worked for over ten years on conflict prevention and peacebuilding for the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs; UNICEF in New York; Amnesty International in India; and with other governments, NGOs and UN, EU and AU agencies. Most recently he was a Conflict Adviser and in charge of S&J policy at Saferworld, leading research on governance and state-building in Kenya; plural justice systems in Myanmar; community security in Somalia; injustice and inequality in Kyrgyzstan; plural security in South Sudan; political violence in Bangladesh; police reform in Tajikistan; SSR in Egypt and Nepal; and the dangers of CVE/PVE policies. Will also taught for the Civilian Peacebuilding Course at Basel University and has written a book on peace and conflict in partnership with the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNoSDP).
Will holds a MA in War Studies from King’s College, London, and is currently studying towards a PhD in International Relations and Political Science at the of International and Development Studies (IHEID), Geneva.
Project Officer, Asia-Pacific Unit
Youngchan Kim is a Project Officer in the Asia-Pacific Unit at DCAF. He is involved in the design, management and implementation of various security sector governance and security sector reform (SSG/SSR) activities in the Asia-Pacific region, with a focus on DCAF’s contributions to the EU-funded and FIIAPP-implemented project on the “Support to Reform of the Myanmar Police Force”. Since 2017 he has been involved in presentations on SSG/R for visiting delegations from Myanmar, organized by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs and an annual course on “International Relations, Democratisation and Human Security” for young professionals from Myanmar at GCSP/DCAF in Geneva. He was involved in the organization and delivery of the 2017 Inter-Parliamentary Forum on Security Sector Governance in Southeast Asia as well as recent training workshops on SSG/R for members of parliament and parliamentary staff (February 2018) and on SSG/R and DDR for members of the Myanmar military (May 2018). Previously, he served as a Research Assistant in DCAF’s Research Division, where he assisted the Ombuds Institutions Programme. Prior to joining DCAF, Youngchan worked at the Swiss Institute for International Economics and Applied Economic Research (SIAW), the US Committee for Human Rights in North Korea (HRNK) and the Institute for Health and Unification Studies (IHUS). Youngchan Kim holds a dual MA in Law and Diplomacy (MALD) from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University and in International Affairs and Governance (MIA) from the University of St. Gallen. His Master’s thesis addressed “The Role of the Security Sector in Transition to Democracy: Republic of Korea (South Korea) and Republic of China (Taiwan)”.
Project Assistant, Asia-Pacific Unit
Zoë Poznicek is a Project Assistant in the Asia-Pacific Unit at the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF). She provides research, editing, logistical and administrative support under the direct supervision of the Unit’s Head. She also represents the Unit in DCAF’s internal communication task force.
While working at DCAF, Zoë is pursuing a Master’s degree in International Law at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID) in Geneva, where she concentrates on environmental and general public international law.
Prior to joining DCAF, she worked for the Swiss Network for International Studies (SNIS) in Geneva and completed a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations with a focus on law at the University of Geneva.