Robert Elias

Robert Elias


Program Director • Full-Time Faculty

(415) 422-6349 Kalmanovitz Hall 276 (2A Annex)


Robert Elias has taught in the Politics Department at USF since 1989. He founded the USF Legal Studies and the Peace & Justice Studies programs, and now coordinates the Legal Studies, Criminal Justice Studies, and the 4+3 Law programs. He teaches in the Honors Humanities and the BA/MA in International Studies programs. He's a Pre–Law Advisory Program member and advises the Student Pre–Law Society.

Elias has taught previously at Tufts University in Boston and France, the University of California-Berkeley, Penn State University, and the University of Maryland in College Park and Europe. He's been a researcher with the International Institute of Human Rights (Strasbourg), the Graduate Institute of International Studies (Geneva), Oxfam America (Boston), the Institute for Defense & Disarmament Studies (Cambridge), and the Vera Institute of Justice (New York).

Elias comes from a Czech and Irish-Catholic working class family in New York City. He is the Editor of the transnational journal Peace Review, which was a Utne Press Award Finalist in 2007 and 2010. He is also Associate Editor of New Political Science, the Encyclopedia of Peace, Violence & Conflict, and the International Review of Victimology

Program Director, Criminal Justice Studies
Program Director, Legal Studies Program
Program Director, 4/3 Law Program
MA/PhD, Penn State University
BA, University of Pennsylvania
Certificate, University of Strasbourg
Human rights
Alternative development
Political movements
Selected Publications

Elias, R. and Ziajka, A. The University of San Francisco: College History Series. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2015.

Elias, R. The Empire Strikes Out: How baseball sold U.S. foreign policy and promoted the American way abroad. New York: The New Press, 2010.

Elias, R. The Deadly Tools of Ignorance: A Debs Kafka mystery. Cambridge, Mass.: Rounder Books, 2005.

Elias, R., ed. Baseball and the American Dream. Armonk, New York: M.E. Sharpe, 2001.

Elias, R. and Turpin, J., eds. Rethinking Peace. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 1994.

Elias, R. Victims Still: The political manipulation of crime victims. Newbury Park, Calif.: Sage Publications, 1993. 

Elias, R. The Politics of Victimization: Victims, victimology, and human rights. New York: Oxford University Press, 1986.

Elias, R, ed. Peace Resource Book. Pensacola, FL: Ballinger Publishing, 1986. 

Elias, R. Victims of the system: Crime victims and compensation in American politics and criminal justice. New Brunswick, N.J.: Transaction Books, 1983. 

Awards & Distinctions

USF Dean's Scholar, 2012

Finalist: Casey Award and ForeWord Sports Book of the Year Award for The Empire Strikes Out, 2010

Sarlo Prize for Teaching, 2006

Frank L. Beach Award for Leadership in Service, 2001

USF Distinguished Research Award, 1996