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Jose Sousa-Santos bio

Jose Sousa-Santos

Senior Fellow

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Pacific Islands defence and security, Southeast Asia security, transnational organized crime, geopolitics, grey zone


Jose is a Senior Fellow at the Australia Pacific Security College specializing in transnational crime, regional security and non-state actors in the Pacific Islands. In June 2021, he was appointed to the Global Initiative against Transnational Crime panel of experts.

Prior to this Jose has also held roles as the subject matter expert (transnational crime and terrorism) with the USINDOPACOM and SOCPAC Cooperation Against Transnational Threats programme and Pacific Area Security Sector Working Group ; an intelligence analyst with the New Zealand Police National Intelligence Centre; as advisor on conflict mediation and transformation to HE Dr Jose Ramos-Horta during his terms as prime minister and president of Timor-Leste, and as lead analyst with the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) Joint Mission Analysis Centre (JMAC) focussed on conflict, non-state actors and spoilers. In 2007 he was nominated for the United Nations Sergio Vieira de Mello Human Rights Award for achievements in the area of community conflict mediation and dispute resolution during the Timor-Leste 2006 crisis and received commendations from the United Nations Police for investigative work on transnational crime (human trafficking). Jose formerly served with the Australian Defence Force.

Jose is undertaking his doctoral studies on the nexus between climate security and transnational crime at Massey University, Wellington.