Malcolm H. Kerr Dissertation Awards
Princeton University, Department of Sociology
2021 Winner (Social Sciences)
Brokers of Order: How Money Moves in Wartime Syria
The winner for the Social Sciences category is Gozde Güran, whose highly original dissertation traces the complex hawala system of informal money transfer in light of the 2011 Syrian civil war and the ensuing refugee crisis. Brokers of Order is empirically rich, theoretically incisive, and beautifully written. Drawing on mixed methods research in both Turkey and Lebanon, Güran carefully delineates how various forms of trust ties - both those pre-existing the war and those formed in its wake - enable the ongoing exchange of money across borders. In doing so, this work provides a unique vantage point into how informal economic transactions are sustained in times of political upheaval, speaking to scholars of the Middle East and beyond.
The dissertation was completed at Princeton University in the Department of Sociology under the supervision of Viviana A. Zelizer.