For further information contact Andrew McLaughlin at the University of Bath press office on 01225 386883, 01225 384220 or 07966 341 357

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Press Release - 20 January 2005

University offers expertise on Iraq elections

Violence in Iraq has increased in the run-up to the elections. Even though the US and its allies insist that elections will go ahead as scheduled and that they mark a major step towards democracy in Iraq, doubts remain that free and fair elections will be possible across all of the country, and that they will bring stability and legitimacy. Questions that are being asked about Iraq include:

Will elections in Iraq be possible amid increasing violence?

Will elections be free and fair?

Will elections provide much-needed legitimacy to the political process in Iraq?

What effect will the elections have on the social and economic development of Iraq?

The University of Bath can offer expert opinion to the media in the run-up to the elections in Iraq on January 30th. Please call the University’s press office for more information on: 01225 384220; 07966 341 322.

Our experts include:

Professor Stefan Wolff:

Professor Wolff has extensive expertise in the Middle East, Northern Ireland and the Balkans and has also worked on a wide range of other conflicts elsewhere, including Central and Eastern Europe, Africa, and Central and Southeast Asia.

Professor Wolff is a consultant for major national and international governmental and non-governmental organisations and the private sector, including the UK Foreign Office, the Westminster Foundation for Democracy, and the European Centre for Minority Issues. Professor Wolff has published widely and his ninth book, Autonomy, Self-governance and Conflict Resolution, will come out in February.

He can offer comment on the current situation in Iraq, the upcoming elections, the future of the country and the role of the international community.

Professor Geof Wood:

Professor Wood is Head of the University’s Department of Economics and International Development and Director of its Institute for International Policy Analysis.

Professor Wood is a sociologist, specialising in International Development. His research over 34 years has included: development administration, rural development, poverty in both urban and rural areas and development in poor countries. He has published widely on these areas.

He can offer comment on the social and economic development issues in Iraq, and more general questions on political and institutional issues.