Areas of Expertise
Vina Nadjibulla is an Adjunct Professor at the School of Public Policy and Global Affairs at the University of British Columbia. As an international security and peacebuilding specialist, Vina spent a significant portion of her career working at United Nations headquarters and in peacekeeping and peacebuilding missions in West and Central Africa.
She has over 20 years of professional experience in high-level diplomacy, strategic planning, policy making, and political risk analysis. From war zones to board rooms, Vina has extensive experience working with national governments, non-profits and philanthropic organizations in Canada, the United States, Africa, Central Asia, and China.
A seasoned activist and a passionate advocate, Vina has been a long-time champion for human rights, women’s rights and social justice. Her most recent efforts focused on securing the release of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor who were being held as political hostages in China.
Vina’s current research at UBC is focused on arbitrary detention in state to state relations, Canada-China bilateral relations and exploring Canadian policy options in the Indo-Pacific region in the context of growing US-China geopolitical competition. She is also working on a book project examining the crisis in China-Canada relations sparked by the Meng Wenzhou extradition case and its implications for the future of Canadian foreign policy towards China and the broader Indo-Pacific region.
Vina continues to volunteer with a number of non-profit organizations and serves as a Board Member and Strategic Assessment Advisor for Business for Better Society, is a member of the advisory committee of the Vancouver Anti-Corruption Institute and is a member of the Canada Committee of the Human Rights Watch. Vina is also a fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute in Ottawa.
Vina holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia University and is fluent in English, Russian and Farsi and speaks intermediate Mandarin Chinese. She is a student of neuroscience and behavioral psychology, a certified yoga instructor and a committed practitioner of mindfulness meditation.
Born in the Soviet Union, raised in Afghanistan, and educated in the United States, Vina has also worked and lived in Kenya and China. She now lives in Canada.