Travers completed his PhD in Economics at the Vrije Universiteit and Tinbergen Institute in Amsterdam. He is an affiliate of the Households in Conflict Network (HiCN). In 2014/15, Travers held a Marie Curie fellowship at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, under the PODER network. That same year, he spent time at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development as a visiting researcher. Previously he has done contract work for the World Bank, Australian National University, and Nanyang Technological University.
One strand of his research investigates the impact of post-conflict reconstruction on insurgency, for which he spent November 2013 in Kabul conducting field interviews with reconstruction and development stakeholders. The other strand of his research focuses on corporate ownership, political connections, and board networks of publicly listed firms.