Dr Annette Idler

Director of Studies, Changing Character of War Programme, Pembroke College; Research Associate, Department of Politics & International Relations


Dr Idler’s work focuses on the interface of conflict, security, transnational organised crime and peacebuilding, and the role that violent non-state actors play in these dynamics. She has conducted extensive fieldwork in the war-torn and crisis-affected borderlands of Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela, and conducted more than 500 interviews, analysing the relationships among rebels, criminals and paramilitary groups and exploring their impact on citizen security. Dr Idler previously worked with UNDP’s Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery, the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean and GIZ, the German development organization. Alongside her Oxford roles, she is also Research Associate at the Centre on Conflict, Development and Peacebuilding at the Graduate Institute Geneva. 


  • The Colombian conflict, FARC, ELN, paramilitaries
  • Civil war, armed groups, violent non-state groups (rebels, terrorists, criminals, militias, paramilitaries, gangs), crime-conflict nexus, crime-terror nexus, alliances and combat between armed groups
  • Transnational organised crime, illicit drug trafficking, cocaine trade, drug policy
  • Borderlands, peripheries, marginalised communities
  • Civilian security, citizen security, armed violence, criminal violence, security architecture
  • Venezuela, Chavez, Ecuador, Andean region, spillover of Colombian conflict
  • Changing character of conflict, trends in conflict and violence, conflict prevention, peacebuilding
  • Ethnographic methods, fieldwork in fragile settings

Media experience

Dr Idler has considerable experience of working with the media, including broadcast interviews (live and pre-recorded) for outlets such as Al Jazeera TV, BBC World TV, BBC World Service Radio, ORF (Austria) and Ciudad (Argentina). She is also a regular contributor to print and online outlets.


English (fluent), Spanish (fluent), German (native), French (intermediate)