Projects and Recent Publications

Current Projects

Research developments in Global Law and Disasters

During the past ten years alone, an estimated 1.5 billion people were affected by some form of disaster, with the likely number, intensity and impact of crises, emergencies, conflicts and disasters likely to continue increasing. This is reflected in current and emerging global priorities such as the Hyogo Framework for Action 2 on disaster risk reduction, UN Climate Change Conference 2015, UN Sustainable Development Goals 2015, and forthcoming World Humanitarian Summit 2016 which seek an increasingly integrated, multidimensional approach to related issues.

The School of Law, in collaboration with a number of other schools at the University of Reading, has developed a unique, flexible, multidisciplinary new programme which capitalizes on the significant expertise of colleagues across the University: LLM/Postgraduate Diploma/Postgraduate Certificate in Global Crisis, Conflict, and Disaster Management, which will commence 2016/17 (for more details see the GLAR's Postgraduate taught study page). In parallel to this programme, GLAR colleagues, in collaboration with colleagues from various disciplines, are busy developing their research expertise on global law and disasters, initially with the publication of two books:

  • SC Breau and KLH Samuel (eds), Research Handbook on Disasters and International Law (Edward Elgar, 2016 forthcoming) - to which a number of GLAR colleagues are contributing book chapters.
  • KLH Samuel, SC Breau, and S Whitbourn, International Law and Disaster Management: Planning, Response, and Reconstruction (Cambridge University Press, 2017 forthcoming).

These publications form part of a much larger and ongoing programme of teaching and research at the University of Reading, School of Law in relation to Global Law and Disaster issues. The School of Law expects to be in a position soon to be able to offer CPD, consultancy advice and to engage in research projects on these and related matters.

Climate Change

Professor Chris Hilson is engaged in ongoing work related to climate change.

He recently submitted a response to the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment's consultation on his Report on Implementation. 

Professor Hilson is an Associate of the Walker Institute for Climate System Research, and has published comment pieces for the Institute and presented on the subject at Institute symposiums:

The Role of International Humanitarian Law in Contemporary Conflicts

Dr Lawrence Hill-Cawthorne is currently working on an ongoing project on the role to be played by international humanitarian law (IHL) in contemporary and future conflicts. In light of the growing recognition of the continued application of international human rights law in situations of armed conflict, the question is now posed as to how IHL should now function in these situations. This issue is complicated by the fact that most modern conflicts now take the form of non-international armed conflicts, for which the applicable rules of IHL have traditionally been far less developed than those applicable in inter-state conflicts, leaving international human rights law to apply unaffected, subject to permissible derogation. In light of these contextual developments, this project seeks to explore what role IHL should now play in contemporary conflicts. Based on this research project, Dr Hill-Cawthorne has published a 2014 article in the Israel Law Review entitled "The Role of Necessity in International Humanitarian and Human Rights Law". He is also finalising another piece due for publication in the International & Comparative Law Quarterly entitled "Humanitarian Law, Human Rights Law and Bifurcation of Armed Conflict".

The Court of Justice of the European Union and the Development of EU External Relations Law

Dr Anne Thies and Marise Cremona (Professor of Law, European University Institute, Fiesole) are currently working on a project related to the role of the Court of Justice of the European Union in the development of EU external relations law. This has so far resulted in a conference on 'The Court of Justice of the EU and External Relations Law - Constitutional Challenges' (19 and 20 April 2012, EUI, Fiesole), which aimed for an exchange on ongoing legal developments between scholars, diplomats and practitioners from a variety of European countries, including Advocate General Kokott of the European Court of Justice. A co-edited collection of selected papers has been published by Hart Publishing (2014). A further conference will be held in February 2015, which is organised as part of the activities of the Interest Group 'The EU as a Global Actor' (ESIL) and the Centre for the Law of EU External Relations (CLEER).

Defining "Military Objective" in Non-International Armed Conflicts

NIACDr Lawrence Hill-Cawthorne and Dr Ruvi Ziegler are currently working on a joint project examining the way in which "military objective" is, and should be, defined in non-international armed conflicts. Defining "military objective" is important, for such objects are considered lawful targets under international humanitarian law. The traditional approach to this issue has been to borrow from the definition applicable in international armed conflicts and apply it in non-international armed conflicts. This project seeks to challenge this practice, by emphasising the differing contexts in these two kinds of conflict which impact on the suitability of drawing on the rules applicable in international armed conflicts in order to develop the law of non-international armed conflict. In particular, it is argued that certain post-conflict considerations exist regarding non-international armed conflicts that render the definition of military objective in international armed conflicts inappropriate for such situations. This project has thus far yielded a paper which was presented at the 8th Annual ICRC/Minerva Conference on International Humanitarian Law in Jerusalem in November 2013, and it is currently in the process of being developed into a full journal article.

The UN Principles to Combat Impunity

Dr Alison Bisset is currently working on a contribution to a comprehensive, multi-authored commentary on The UN Principles To Combat Impunity (also known as the Joinet/Orentlicher principles). The Principles mark a significant step forward in the debate on the obligation of states to combat impunity in its various forms, including the right of victims to truth, justice, reparations and guarantees of non-recurrence. Despite this significance, no comprehensive academic commentary of the 38 principles has been provided so far. The present project seeks to fill this gap.

Dr Bisset has also recently embarked on a new project, examining inter-state cooperation in the prosecution of international crimes.

The Every Casualty Group

Professor Susan Breau is working on an ongoing project with the Every Casualty Group on the topic of "Recording of Civilian Casualties of Armed Conflict".

Citizenship and the Franchise

Dr Ruvi Ziegler has been engaged in a highly topical project concerning independence referenda and putative citizenship. The project has resulted in the publication of Ruvi Ziegler, Jo Shaw and Rainer Bauböck (eds), Independence Referendums: Who Should Vote and Who Should be Offered Citizenship?, EUI Working Paper RSCAS 2014/90. In this Working Paper, several authors consider the interrelations between eligibility criteria for participation in independence referenda (that may result in the creation of a new independent state) and the determination of putative citizenship ab initio (on day one) of such a state. Contributors to this debate come from divergent disciplines (law, political science, sociology, philosophy).

Dr Ziegler is also working on two other research projects examining the interrelations between citizenship and the franchise. The first project is a manuscript on voting rights of recognised Geneva Convention refugees in their countries of asylum. The second project is a book chapter provisionally entitled 'Regulating the Democratic Process: Strasbourg's Timidity' to be included in a special volume published by Hart.

Treatment of African Asylum Seekers in Israel

Dr Ruvi Ziegler is currently working on two projects examining the treatment of African Asylum Seekers in Israel.  The first project is a book chapter jointly with Jonathan Berman (Lincoln College, Oxford) entitled 'Detention of Asylum Seekers in Israel: The Unholy Union of Securitization and Demography' forthcoming in Amy Nethery and Stephanie J. Silverman (eds), Immigration Detention: The Migration of a Policy and its Human Impact (Routledge, January 2015). The second project is a journal article provisionally entitled 'The (Mis)handling of African Asylum Seekers in Israel' which will be submitted to a special volume of the Journal of Immigration, Asylum, and Nationality Law on 'Access to Asylum'.

Recent Publications

Alison BissetDr Alison Bisset

Staff profile: Dr Alison Bisset

Recent publications:

Susan BreauProfessor Susan Breau

Staff profile: Professor Susan Breau

Recent publications:

Pedro Caro de SousaDr Pedro Caro de Sousa

Staff profile: Dr Pedro Caro de Sousa

Recent publications:

James GreenProfessor James Green

Staff profile: Professor James Green

Recent publications:

Lawrence-Hill-Cawthorne_sDr Lawrence Hill-Cawthorne

Staff profile: Dr Lawrence Hill-Cawthorne

Recent publications:

Rosa FreedmanProfessor Rosa Freedman

Staff profile: Professor Rosa Freedman

Recent publications:

Chris HilsonProfessor Chris Hilson

Staff profile: Professor Chris Hilson

Recent publications:

Dr Mai SatoDr Mai Sato

Staff profile: Dr Mai Sato

Recent publications:

Anne ThiesDr Anne Thies

Staff profile: Dr Anne Thies

Recent publications:

Alina TryfonidouDr Alina Tryfonidou

Staff profile: Dr Alina Tryfonidou

Recent publications:

Ruvi ZieglerDr Ruvi Ziegler

Staff profile: Dr Reuven (Ruvi) Ziegler

Recent publications:

Contact

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