Anca-Elena Ursu

Research Assistant


  • Conflict and Fragility
  • Politics and Crime
  • Migration


  • Sub Saharan Africa

Anca-Elena Ursu is a research assistant with Clingendael’s Conflict Research Unit. A legal professional by training, she works at the intersection of customary justice, local governance and irregular migration from the Sahel. 

Elena’s work strives to be disciplined by theory, informed by cutting-edge empirical efforts, and connected in a practical way to contemporary policy endeavours. She is passionate about building bridges between formal and informal structures of political and legal governance, while refining the tactics and offering constructive analysis that can help unlock the full potential of the regions she studies.

Prior to joining Clingendael, Elena has collaborated with a number of international organisations and European institutions in the fields of humanitarian affairs and justice. She worked extensively for Asylos, a Brussels-based NGO supporting asylum claims and country of origin information research. She counts among her top accomplishments being nominated a “Pacific Forum CSIS Young Leader” for her academic work on Asia-Pacific security affairs. Elena is also a member of the Forced Migration Unit at the University of Nottingham. 

My work



Conflict and Fragility

On the shores of safety: migration management in Sicily

14 February 2018 - 11:51
Conflict and Fragility

Initiatives politiques de renforcement systèmes judiciaires Mali

14 February 2018 - 09:42
Conflict and Fragility

Policy initiatives to strengthen customary justice in Mali

06 February 2018 - 16:05
Conflict and Fragility

Why securitising the Sahel will not stop migration

22 January 2018 - 17:00
Conflict and Fragility

The Italian military deployment

15 January 2018 - 10:30
Show more Publications