Üngör, who was born in Turkey and raised in Enschede in the Netherlands, earned a doctorate from the University of Amsterdam in 2009, and taught history at Utrecht University and sociology at the NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust, and Genocide Studies. He has published widely in the field of mass violence and genocide, in particular the Armenian Genocide and the Rwandan genocide. Since February 2020 he is Professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the NIOD Institute in Amsterdam.
Üngör's book based on his dissertation, The Making of Modern Turkey; Nation and State in Eastern Anatolia, 1913-50 (Oxford University Press, 2011) was the winner of the Erasmus Research Prize (Praemium Erasmianum) 2010 and of the Keetje Hodshon Prize awarded by the Royal Netherlands Society of Sciences and Humanities. Üngör was awarded the 2012 Heineken Young Scientist Award in History by the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences.
He and Armenian Alexander Goekjian, who also wrote the screenplay and directed, are featured in the documentary The Land of Our Grandparents, which was shown on Dutch public television on April 24, 2008, and was awarded the prize for best documentary at the Pomegranate Film Festival in Toronto that year. Üngör also co-wrote Confiscation and Destruction: The Young Turk Seizure of Armenian Property in 2011.
His most recent work is on the dynamic and violence of the Syrian civil war.
- Aram Arkun, "Prolific Young Scholar on Armenian Genocide in Holland", "The Armenian Mirror Spectator", February 7, 2012.
- http://www.khmw.nl/actueel/keetje-hodshon-prijs-2011-toegekend-aan-dr-y-ngy-r/78[permanent dead link]
- "Ugur Ümit Üngör", Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences, retrieved October 16, 2013 (in Dutch)
- Ugur Ümit Üngör on Utrecht University official website
- "Fatale mix voor massageweld". Interview by Mariette Huisjes, Akademie Nieuws, Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences (in Dutch)