Unfiltered Voices is comprised of a team of regional and topical analysts and researchers with a wide range of skills and experience. They specialise within a particular field and produce quality work on topics they know best, and do so with passion. To find out more about the individual analysts, read below.
Analyst – Sub-Saharan Africa
Natalie Domaas is a Swiss-American policy officer working in Brussels, Belgium. Natalie’s area of expertise is in security and development challenges facing countries emerging from civil conflict, with a specific geographical focus in Sub-Saharan Africa. She has previously conducted research on how the intersecting identities of women migrants impacts their experiences in destination countries, the impacts of civil conflict on protected areas and local communities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, as well as many other projects concerning the connection between gender, conflict, and development. Natalie holds a B.A. in International Relations from St. Joseph’s University and an M.A. in Conflict, Security, and Development from King’s College London.
Natalie is a native speaker of English, French, Swiss-German and has fluency in German.
Analyst – Europe
Fulya Kocukoğlu currently works as an Associate at the Global Relations Forum (GRF) in Istanbul. After receiving her BA in Political Science from Galatasaray University, she pursued an MA in International Relations at the University of Sussex and later completed a second master’s degree in LLM Human Rights Law with a secondary specialisation in International Development at the University of Kent-Brussels School of International Studies. Throughout her studies, she worked for the non-profit and public sector as a researcher and pursued several internships. Her research area focuses on the human rights issues in the fields of migration, international security and development, as well as the European Union external relations.
Besides her native Turkish, she is fluent in English and French and has intermediate knowledge of German.
Analyst – North America
Konrad Foote is a Media Strategist with clients in North America and Europe, specialising in multi-channel digital campaign management, social media, and audience targeting & analysis. Graduating from Durham University with a BA Honours in Politics, his dissertation focused on the use of new social media tactics within political communication by President Obama as a means to use his bully pulpit to persuade and increase issue saliency.With an academic background in American politics, and commercial experience in marketing, Konrad’s research interests include US current affairs, digital media, and the interplay between the two.
Konrad is native English speaker with understanding of Polish.
Eray Arda Akartuna
Arda is currently a PhD researcher at the Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science at UCL. His focus is on the money laundering and terrorist financing risks of new technologies. His research is funded by the Dawes Centre for Future Crime at UCL and has involved collaborating with the UK Home Office Analysis and Insight (HOAI) and the National Crime Agency (NCA). He is also a teaching assistant at UCL. He holds an MSc in Countering Organised Crime and Terrorism from UCL. Besides volunteering, he has also advised and authored reports involving these matters for two political parties in Turkey. He has also been a research assistant at the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organised Crime, working on the Enhancing Africa’s response to Transnational Organised Crime (ENACT) project, as well as contributing to data collection and research on organised crime in Latin America and the West Balkans.
Arda is bilingual in both English and Turkish and is intermediate in German.
Jennifer works as an Associate Researcher at The Program on Governance and Local Development at the University of Gothenburg. She holds a BA in International Relations from Queen Mary University of London and an MA in Conflict, Security and Development from King’s College London. She is interested in political sociology and the role that communication plays in international politics, particularly in relation to conflict. For her MA thesis, Jennifer used frame theory to analyse how the United Nations failed to address and prevent the violence against the Rohingya in Myanmar through the use of a humanitarian crisis frame.
Jennifer is a native Swedish speaker and is also fluent in English and Norwegian with intermediate knowledge of Danish.
Analyst – Global
Nick Gutkin is a young Canadian professional living in Brussels, Belgium. Nick’s research interests include climate science, remote sensing, and nature-based solutions. He currently works for ESTI-impact, an innovative Dutch startup with the goal of rewarding farmers for sustainable farming practices through the use of carbon credits. Nick’s M.Sc. thesis work involved using satellite imagery and remote sensing to predict forest cover dynamics in Rwanda, in coordination with the Rwandan-Belgian partnership to quantify firewood stocks available for the general population of the country. Nick holds a B.MSc. in Interdisciplinary Medical Sciences from the University of Western Ontario and a M.Sc. in Sustainable Development from KU Leuven.
Nick is a native speaker of English and Russian and has proficiency in Spanish and French.
Analyst – Latin-America
Gretel Cuevas is a political scientist from Mexico. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Bryn Mawr College in the United States. During her college journey she studied at the London School of Economics (LSE) and the University of Pennsylvania where she completed her specialisations in Latin American studies, public policy, and comparative politics. She is currently a Watson Fellow studying the political implications of the COVID-19 crisis and a political advisor in Mexico.
Aside from her native Spanish, Gretel is fluent in English.
Ian Teunissen van Manen
Analyst – North America
Ian Teunissen van Manen holds an MSc in International Politics from KU Leuven, Belgium where he wrote his thesis focused on populist rhetoric. He completed his BA in International Studies with a focus on American Politics and Peace-building & Conflict Management at DePaul University (Chicago, USA). He has previously worked at the European Parliament, political campaigns, and at various Non-Profit Organisations in the Chicago Area. His research interests are in US Politics, American Foreign Policy, and Trans-Atlantic Relations. He currently works as a European Projects Executive at EURACTIV.
Ian is fluent in English and Dutch, and is also proficient in Spanish.
Analyst – South Asia
Prateek Srivastava completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Cincinnati, USA in International Affairs. He is the Executive Director of CRRSS and serves as the Senior Advisor for the Inequalities Mandate. His research interests include politics, religion, ethnicity, violence and media in South Asia. He was the Scripps Howard Communication Fellow for the World Affairs Council in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky and has received several research grants. Prateek has published widely on South Asian politics, including his first book: Identity, and Diaspora. The University of Cincinnati awarded him with the Undergraduate Research Achievement Award in April 2019. Prateek is currently studying for an Advanced MSc in Cultural Anthropology and Development Studies and has graduated with an MSc in International Politics from KU Leuven in 2020.
Prateek is fluent in English and Hindi and has basic understanding of Mandarin and Arabic.
Mert Can Yazici
Analyst – Sub-Saharan Africa
Mert is a recent graduate from the Advanced Master of European Politics and Policies programme at KU Leuven, Belgium and completed his studies as a recipient of the European Commission’s Jean Monnet scholarship. His master’s thesis focused on human rights protection and promotion in the EU’s migration partnership with Niger. He also holds a BA in International Relations from Ege University, Turkey. Mert holds experience working for the non-profit and public sector as well as volunteering at various organisations working in the fields of environment, children, and women’s education. His research interests include foreign policy, international migration, human rights, and rising powers in Africa.
Besides his native Turkish, Mert is fluent in English and has intermediate knowledge of Spanish as well as limited proficiency in French.
Analyst – Southeast Europe
CJ is Vice President at the American-Central European Business Association, where he covers Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Moldova, and Kosovo. He is interested in the intersection between international business, defence, and government, and he has a specialisation in the impact of political crises on bilateral economic development. He is currently an MBA Candidate at Mount St. Mary’s University, and he obtained his Bachelor’s degree from Saint Leo University, where he was a 2020 USILA Scholar All-American in lacrosse.
Besides his native Turkish, Mert is fluent in English and has CJ is a native English speaker and has intermediate knowledge of Spanish and Russian.