New NSF grant enables professor to deepen research on state building in Bosnia
The United Nations recently reported that a landmark number of 1 million refugees have returned to their houses since the Dayton Peace Accords brought the war in Bosnia to an end in 1995. During the past few years, Gerard Toal, professor of government and international affairs at the Virginia Tech Alexandria campus, has been at the forefront of research on the returns process in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Toal's research investigates the contradiction in the Dayton peace treaty that pledged to reverse ethnic cleansing but, at the same time, sanctioned a segregated Bosnia created by ethnic cleansing and ruled by local authority ethnonationalists. This contradiction has resulted in a 10-year struggle between the international community and local authorities over the ethnic composition of Bosnia.