School of Politics and International Studies

Responsibility to Protect Student Journal


  • Volume 5, Issue No. 2

    Volume 5 Issue 2 is now out!

    As we reflect on a year scarred by an unprecedented global health emergency and its rippling worldwide effects - and as we cautiously step foot into a new one - the Responsibility to Protect Student Journal offers its insights into the ongoing human rights violations of our time. Whilst the COVID-19 pandemic early on raised the question of whether a global health emergency would change how the international community sees and acts on its global responsibilities, ongoing human rights violations have kept a steady pace, whilst others have emerged in a world where global inequalities have largely been reinforced. 

    Download Volume 5 Issue 2 here.

  • Volume 5, Issue No. 1

    The 2020 summer issue is now out! (Volume 5, Issue 1)

    The notion of responsibility is at the heart of not only the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) doctrine, but also of international criminal justice and responses to mass atrocities more broadly. The global pandemic the world currently faces forces us to rethink how we conceive of responsibility today, and the implications for the international community’s ability to respond to mass atrocities. This is all the more crucial as we ponder on the fifteen years anniversary of the World Summit Outcome Document establishing the R2P doctrine we continue to refer to today. We discussed these subjects with the UN Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on the Responsibility to Protect, Dr. Karen Smith, in an interview with which we are opening this issue.  The scope of this issue is vast, ranging from articles on the genocide of the Rohingya in Myanmar and tensions between counterterrorism and R2P to evidentiary challenges of new technologies in international criminal trials and the European Union’s relation with R2P.

    Read Volume 5 Issue 1 here.

    Download Volume 5 Issue 1 here.

  • Volume 4, Issue No. 1

    Volume 4 Issue 1 is now out!

    In their last annual report, Human Rights Watch warned that atrocities are the new normal. Across the world, ultranationalists are legitimising hate speech and inflammatory language, which often serve as precursors to hate crimes and act as early warnings of atrocity risks. Discussions on atrocity and conflict prevention, international criminal justice and sexual and reproductive health in conflict zones are becoming harder and harder to place on the agenda of the UN Security Council (UNSC). At the same time, despite the deadlock in the UNSC on ensuring that those responsible for gross human rights violations are brought to justice, some progress is being made in collecting and preserving evidence of crimes committed in Syria and Myanmar through the work of independent international investigative mechanisms established by the UN General Assembly and the Human Rights Council (progress is also made regarding the collection, preservation and storying of evidence of ISIS crimes in Iraq, thanks to the work of the UN Investigative Team for Accountability of Da'esh (UNITAD), established by the UNSC). It is against this background that our fourth volume is published, bringing to the fore six student papers that touch on a variety of subjects: from the developing nature and scope of international fact finding missions to conflict related sexual and gender based violence, and the operationalisation of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) in the Central African Republic, Myanmar, Libya and Syria.

    Read Volume 4 Issue 1 here

    Download Volume 4 Issue 1 here

  • Volume 3, Issue No. 2

    The Special Issue on Transitional Justice is now out!

    We are delighted to present the Special Issue on Transitional Justice.

    For this Special Issue, we have selected four student essays that engage with the notion of transitional justice. From examining the tension between global and local approaches to justice, to analysing the success of transitional justice approaches in Kenya post-2008, this issue brings young voices into the ever-important debate about the nature of transitional justice.

    Read the Special Issue here.

    Download the Special Issue here.

  • Volume 3, Issue No. 1

    Diversity and heterogeneity of academic debate is critical to our journal. Our efforts are focused towards creating a virtual academic platform that allows a plurality of young voices to speak about important subjects such as responses to mass violence and international criminal justice. In doing so, we are continuously extending the scope of the journal to cover and engage with critical perspectives on tangential subjects such as human rights and gender. The diversity of our publications is proof that this journal’s scope goes beyond its name. This is not a journal that advocates for or against R2P, but an inclusive intellectual space that allows young voices to critically engage, unpack and make their contribution to some of the most pressing debates in the field of responses to gross human rights violations. This new issue comprises six articles that touch on diverse themes, from the nature of human rights to international criminal justice. 

    Download Vol 3 Issue 1 2018

  • Volume 2, Issue No. 2

    Together with STAND, The Student Led Movement To End Mass Atrocities, we are delighted to introduce the first-ever Special Issue of the Responsibility to Protect Student Journal – an issue entirely dedicated to important theoretical and practical questions concerning peacekeeping and peacebuilding.

    For this Special Issue we have selected five student essays reflecting on issues around peacekeeping and peacebuilding. They touch on themes such as unarmed civilian peacekeeping, accountability in peacekeeping missions, the core principles of UN peacekeeping, ex-combatant reintegration and the problems of post-war reconstruction.

  • Volume 2, Issue No. 1

    We are delighted to introduce both the third issue of the Responsibility to Protect Student Journal and a new partnership with STAND: The Student-Led Movement to End Mass Atrocities, a youth-managed advocacy organisation working on issues of genocide and mass atrocity prevention worldwide.

    Collaborating with other student groups allows us to further our own mission and develop this space for youth to produce valuable work and contribute to essential conversations about responses to mass atrocities. Through this collaboration, the R2P Student Journal broadened its scope to include atrocity prevention and peacebuilding-themed contributions. With this partnership, we have enlarged the Journal’s audience and number of potential collaborators while enabling STAND and other like-minded advocacy organisations to inform their forthcoming policies and campaigns with accurate research.

    We have received more contributions than ever before and chosen six excellent student essays on mass atrocity prevention and R2P to present in this issue, focussing on themes such as the US Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act, the Women, Peace and Security Agenda, R2P in Mali, Yemen, and the normative status of R2P.

  • Volume 1, Issue No. 2

    We are excited to share with you the second issue of the R2P Student Journal.

    As Dr. Adrian Gallagher states in his introduction to this issue that the purpose of the Journal is to ‘raise questions, issues and concerns facing the R2P’ in its second decade. He identifies four research agendas where students can contribute: climate change and mass violence, the new UN Secretary-General, changing power balances, and the rise in non-state armed groups. To these, we add: gender and R2P, and the relationship between R2P and international criminal justice, particularly the International Criminal Court (ICC). Two articles in this issue focus on this important issue.

  • Volume 1, Issue No. 1

    We are very excited to share with you the inaugural issue of the Responsibility to Protect Student Journal. As students of International Relations, we have closely followed the evolution of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) norm for many years. The very first R2P Student Coalition was established in 2010 at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. Only a few years later, students from East Africa set up the East African Student Coalition on the R2P, and just last year, the University of Leeds saw the establishment of an R2P Student Coalition.

    We believe the fact that students from three different continents have actively sought to engage with the R2P bodes well for the norm’s future. As tomorrow’s leaders in national governments, in non-governmental organisations or at the United Nations (UN), it is vital that the current student generation continues to grapple with difficult questions around the R2P and related subjects such as human rights, international criminal justice and peacekeeping.

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