Ana Sánchez-Ramírez

Peace Studies & History

Ana Sánchez-Ramírez is a PhD candidate in the joint Peace Studies and History program with an expected graduation date of May 2023. Ana holds an M.A. in Ethnic Studies and a graduate certificate in Women Studies and Gender Research from Colorado State University, as well as a B.A degree in Anthropology from the National University of Colombia. Her doctoral dissertation is titled “Violentology: Expert Knowledge and Government Peacebuilding in Late 20th Century Colombia.” 

Ana’s research centers on the intellectual and political histories of peace in modern Latin America, particularly on the articulation between the production of knowledge about violence and national peace efforts. Her historical research contributes to conversations in the Peace Studies field by examining how peace scholars participate in the design and implementation of peacebuilding policies. Focusing on Colombia’s recent past, she probes the governments’ achievements and shortcomings in addressing protracted violence in the country. In doing so, her research identifies portable lessons on how to effectively advance the articulation of peace research, policy, and practice.

Ana’s dissertation inquires into the rise and influence of “violentology,” an expert knowledge that emerged at the intersection of academic studies on violence in Colombia and the government’s peacebuilding initiatives from the late 1980s onwards. Drawing from primary sources from understudied official and academic archives as well as oral history interviews, her research examines the consequences of the government’s increasing reliance on expert knowledge to outline and justify its policies. Simultaneously, Ana’s project ponders how scholars navigated their collaboration with the state amid the height of the armed conflict. Examining how Colombian intellectuals participated in their government’s peacebuilding agendas, her work recreates the space of negotiation and contestation in which academic analyses and recommendations influenced policymakers’ decisions about violence, peace, and the very future of the Colombian nation.

Ana has been a Research Assistant for the Peace Accord Matrix (PAM) project, coding and following the implementation over ten years of 36 partial peace agreements signed in Colombia between 1984 and 2012. Her second project will examine the transnational history of UNESCO’s role in the development of the social sciences in Latin America during the Cold War.

Publications and Awards

Sánchez-Ramírez, Ana. “La Memoria en Escena y el Movimiento Nacional de Víctimas de Crímenes de Estado.” Etnografías Contemporáneas: Trabajo de Campo. Edited by Jimeno, M., Murillo, S. & Martinez, M. Bogotá: National University of Colombia, 2012, 73-98. (“Memory on Scene and the Victims of State’s Crimes Movement.” Chapter 4 in Contemporary Ethnography: Field Work.)

Policy Brief: “The Limited Impact of Partial Peace Agreements: What Other Countries Can Learn from Colombia’s Historic Quest for Peace.” Co-authored with Madhav Joshi. Peace Accords Matrix Policy Brief Series. South Bend, IN: Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, Keough School of Global Affairs, University of Notre Dame. 2022.

2022 Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Assistant AwardKaneb Center for Teaching Excellence, University of Notre Dame