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About Dr Sebastian Ille

Sebastian is an Associate Professor of Economics at Northeastern University London and author of “Models of Society and Complex Systems”. He is also the Associate Director of Research & Knowledge Exchange for Social Sciences and Head of the research cluster on “Social Dynamics and Behaviour”.

Before joining Northeastern University London, he taught for two years at the Lebanese American University in Beirut as an Assistant Professor in Economics, as well as at Pisa University, the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies in Italy, and Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok. He has been a research/policy consultant for the Home Office, the Overseas Development Institute and the World Commission on Forced Displacement as well as for the Egyptian Center for Economic Studies (ECES).

Sebastian wrote his Ph.D. thesis under the direction of Alan Kirman and Herbert Gintis at the University of Siena, Italy.

Dr Sebastian Ille's Research

Sebastian’s research focuses on social systems, individual decision-making and institutions. His research relies on interdisciplinary methods that combine various approaches across the social sciences to better understand social systems as interconnected and complex processes of different social norms, conventions, individual preferences and interactions.

Selected Publications

1. Models of Society and Complex Systems, Routledge, ISBN: 0367473976

2. Memory retrieval and harshness of conflict in the hawk–dove game, with Ennio Bilancini, Leonardo Boncinelli, and Eugenio Vicario, Economic Theory Bulletin, 10(2).

3. The Evolution of Sectarianism, Communications in Nonlinear Science and Numerical Simulation, 97, 2021.

4. Warlord Politics and Economic Clientelism in Lebanon, with Dina Mansour-Ille, The Economics of Peace and Security Journal, 16(1), 2021.

5. Macrodynamic Modeling of Innovation Equilibria and Traps, with Edgar Sanchez Carrera and Giuseppe Travaglini, The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, 21(2), 2021.

6. Shadow education in Africa: Private supplementary tutoring and its policy implications, International Review of Education, review, (forthcoming), 2021.

7. On Revolutionary Waves and the Dynamics of Landslides, Special Issue: Nationalism and Ethnicity in the Humanities, co-edited with A. C. Grayling, Studies in Ethnicity and Nationalism, 20(3), 2020.

8. Forced private tutoring in Egypt: Moving away from a corrupt social norm, with Mike Peacey, International Journal of Educational Development, 66, 2019.

9. Can nudges affect students’ green behavior? A field experiment, with Ajla Cosic and Hana Cosic, Journal of Behavioral Economics for Policy, 2(1), 2018.

10. Nader Hashemi and Danny Postel (eds.) Sectarianization: “Mapping the New Politics of the Middle East”, Studies in Ethnicity and Nationalism, (review), 18(2), 2018.

11. Democratization and Inequality: Empirical Evidence for the OECD countries, with Adrian Risso and Edgar Sanchez Carrera, Environment and Planning C, 35(6), 2017.

12. Towards Better Economic Models of Social Behaviour? Identity Economics, Studies in Ethnicity and Nationalism, 17(1), 2017.

13. Rational Atrocities and State Formation: A Game Theoretic Approach to the Case of ISIS, with Dina Mansour-Ille, The Economics of Peace and Security Journal, 10(2), 2015.

14. The Dynamics of Norms and Conventions under Local Interactions and Imitation, International Game Theory Review, 16(3), 2014.

15. Clash of Identities: Understanding Social Conflict in Post-Arab Spring Egypt, with Dina Mansour-Ille and Mervat Madkour, in Identity, Difference and Belonging, Interdisciplinary Press, eds. Mansour, Milne & Ille. 2014.

16. The Theory of Conflict Analysis, International Journal of Mathematics, Game Theory and Algebra, 21(2), 2013.

17. Inter-Cultural Limbo: The Dilemma of Western Education in Traditional Societies: Egypt as a Case-Study, with Dina Mansour-Ille and Mervat Madkour, in Multiculturalism, Conflict and Belonging, Interdisciplinary Press, 2013.


Policy Briefs

1. Germany as an Immigration Country: From Denial to Integration, with Mansour-Ille, D.; Mosel, I.; Ille, S.; Hagen-Zanker; J., World Commission on Forced Displacement: Research Report on Forced Displacement, 2019.

2. Jordan: Between the Making of a Nation and the Politics of Living, with Mansour-Ille, D.; Haysom, S.; Ille, S.; Hagen-Zanker; J., World Commission on Forced Displacement: Research Report on Forced Displacement, 2019.

3. Forced Private Tutoring in Egypt: Quality Education in a Deadlock between Low Income, Status and Motivation, The Egyptian Center for Economic Studies, 2014.


Selected Invited Talks

1. Penn State University, African Studies Global Virtual Forum, Social Dynamics and Coordination Failures

2. The 5th International Conference on Nation-Building 2021, Innovative Strategies for Crisis Recovery and Nation-Building, Challenges in a Post-Pandemic World

3. University of Cambridge (UK), St. Catharine’s Political Economy Seminar Series, The Evolution of Sectarianism: A Political Economy Approach

4. University of Urbino (Italy), Dynamic Models in Economics and Finance, The Evolution of Sectarianism and The Low-Innovation Trap

5. The Rahmania Annual Seminar on Social Media and Its Effects in the Arab World (Italy), Reinventing Revolutions

6. Annual Meeting of the American Economic Association (US), The Evolutionary Foundations of Sectarianism

Dr Sebastian Ille's Teaching

At Northeastern University London, Sebastian teaches Microeconomic Principles, Macroeconomic Principles, Topics in Economics, and Economic History. He was the Director for Postgraduate Studies in Economics.

He designed and taught over a dozen courses covering topics from micro- and macroeconomics, game theory, public economics, economic history, organisational theory to more heterodox subjects, such as social dynamics, evolutionary game theory, identity economics, and complex systems.