by Sam Vincent This document summarises the final Security in Transition programme Field Research Ethics and Methodology workshop held at the London School of Economics on 17 October, 2016. As with previous workshops, the substance of the presentations and discussion focused on the ethical and methodological questions raised in the course of conducting research on
Global Security Cultures: A Theoretical Framework for analysing Security in TransitionWorking Papers
This paper introduces the concept of security cultures as a theoretical framework to enable scholars to make sense of the competing ideas and practices that currently characterise the field of security.
In his contribution to Esglobal's special issue on the 20th anniversary of the Dayton Peace Agreement, Dr Iavor Rangelov takes a critical look at transitional justice and the discourse of reconciliation in the region and asks: Is reconciliation a good idea?
This article argues that internationally endorsed peace agreements entrench the restructuring of power relations that take place in ‘new wars’. It characterizes new wars as ‘mutual enterprises’ in which networks of state and nonstate actors engage in violence for economic and/or political gain. The article shows the way in which such networks subvert efforts to implement a rule of law, primarily using the example of Bosnia.
This special issue of the Journal of Conflict & Security Law examines the role of law in constructing and mitigating the ‘security gap’ by grounding the analysis in specific ‘security cultures’: constellations of ideas about security and security practices. The special issue brings together some of the contributions to the conference ‘Law, Justice and the Security Gap’, which was convened in June 2014 at the London School of Economics and Political Science by the research programme Security in Transition: An Interdisciplinary Investigation into the Security Gap, funded by the European Research Council.
Special Issue – Law, Justice and the Security Gap: Justice as a Security Strategy? International Justice and the Liberal Peace in the BalkansJournal Articles
The establishment of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in the midst of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina was seen by many as a radical innovation in security thinking and practice. This article examines the security implications of international justice in the Balkans by situating the analysis within the broader context of international interventions in the region. The article starts by elaborating a distinctive conception of ‘security’ that emerges from the pursuit of international justice, addressing questions such as security for whom, security from what and security by what means.
Special Issue – Law, Justice and the Security Gap: Reducing the Security Gap through National Courts: Targeted Killings as a Case StudyJournal Articles
This article examines the potential role of national courts in reducing the ‘security gap’ in the context of armed conflicts. Judges in democratic States assume different roles. They may variously serve as a legitimating agent of the State; avoid exercising jurisdiction for extra-legal considerations; defer to other branches of the government; enforce the law in line with the rule of law ideal; or develop the law and introduce forms of ethical judgment that go beyond positive application of the law. Identifying the various roles assumed by national judiciaries, their institutional limits and interactions with the executive offers a useful tool for assessing their potential role in advancing human security.
‘All these Outsiders Shouted Louder Than Us’: Civil Society Engagement with Transitional Justice in UgandaWorking Papers
This paper examines civil society interactions with transitional justice in Uganda. It argues that the role of civil society in transitional justice is more complex, and often more circumscribed, than many commentators and practitioners expect. Because of pressures from the state, foreign donors and international civil society, Ugandan civil society has often struggled to maintain a coherent and effective voice on transitional justice matters.
In late 2007, Kenya held presidential elections, whose results were hotly contested, with allegations of fraud. Serious violence followed, some spontaneous, some pre-planned, and some retaliatory. An internationally-brokered agreement followed, creating a power-sharing arrangement between the presidential contestants and a commission of inquiry into the violence. Throughout the violence, civil society actors played a critical role, first monitoring the election, then recording the violence, and pressing for accountability measures.
The role of civil society actors is critical in a host of transitional justice processes. And yet, transitional justice is often approached and examined in a top-down manner that renders the agency of civil society invisible. This paper starts from the premise that the character of transitional justice depends to a large extent on the ways in which civil society actors use, adapt, develop, and contest justice norms and structures. And the other way round: transitional justice processes may have significant impact on civil society. The paper develops an analytical framework for examining different forms of engagement of civil society actors in transitional justice processes in the Balkans, which may be useful for further research on the region as well as comparative work.