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Thomas Eason

Doctoral Researcher,

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Biography

Thomas is a Doctoral Researcher in the School of Politics and International Relations. His thesis develops a new framework that can help guide the analysis of foreign policy decision-making, with a particular focus on the impact of governmental politics and cognitive biases. Drawing upon declassified documents, memoirs, and eyewitness testimonies, the new framework is applied to the British decision to invade Iraq in 2003 and used to develop a more detailed narrative of the controversial decision than currently exists within the prevailing 'Blair-centric' literature.

Thomas has published academic articles on secrecy, covert action, political blame games, and policy networks. He has written a number of blog posts for high impact websites and has also actively engaged with the media. His expert commentary has been quoted in a number of national and international newspapers, including the Guardian, and he has written news articles for local press outlets. Thomas has participated in several live radio interviews, including as a British politics expert for BBC Radio Nottingham.

Thomas's PhD is funded by the University of Nottingham's School of Politics and International Relations. He has also been the recipient of the School's Cowan Award, given in recognition of his research achievements.

Twitter: @ThomasEason_

Expertise Summary

Foreign Policy Analysis

British Politics

British Foreign Policy

Secret Intelligence

Teaching Summary

Thomas is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. He has also been a recipient of the PGR Teaching Award, given by the University of Nottingham's Researcher Academy.

Thomas has taught on the modules:

Secret Intelligence and International Security (BA3)

Covert Action and Unacknowledged Interventionism (MA)

Research Summary

Thomas is in the final stages of writing up his thesis, a case study of the British decision to invade Iraq in 2003, from which he develops a novel framework to help guide the analysis of foreign… read more

Recent Publications

Current Research

Thomas is in the final stages of writing up his thesis, a case study of the British decision to invade Iraq in 2003, from which he develops a novel framework to help guide the analysis of foreign policy decision-making. Thomas does this by combining the Foreign Policy Analysis literatures on governmental politics and political psychology to create a new Foreign Policy Analysis framework, before then applying this framework to the Iraq case. The new framework promises to help analysts develop more detailed and accurate explanations of foreign policy decisions, while the Iraq case study promises to refresh contemporary understandings of the British decision to invade Iraq, challenging simplistic 'Blair-centric' narratives that have become pervasive within the literature.

In addition to his thesis, Thomas has recently authored an academic journal article which explores policy networks involved in British decisions to use covert action, and has co-authored an article which analyses the ability of governments to influence political blame games using constructions of secrecy.

Supervisors:

Prof. Rory Cormac

Prof. David Gill

Future Research

Thomas is currently working on an article that analyses the role official secrecy can play in the construction of foreign policy myths.

School of Politics and International Relations

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University of Nottingham
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