• Project

    Title: Understanding the Allocation of Responsibility after Civil War and Genocide

    When mass conflict such as the civil war in Sierra Leone and the genocide in Bosnia occurs, various actors such as the United Nations, International Criminal Court and local organizations become involved in order to end the conflict, seek justice, and attempt to establish peace. There is a procedure which takes place in order to end the violence and seek justice for those affected by the conflict. Questions of responsibility come to the forefront when action is being taken to pursue peace and justice. Many scholars investigate the role of international organizations (IOs), states, and individuals as holding responsibility for remedying the issues present in post-conflict realities. Responsibility in post-conflict reconstruction is often rooted in finding the actor(s) who were responsible for the atrocities and considering ways to make them take up their responsibility as one way forward to establish peace and justice. This process of attributing responsibility in post-conflict situations in order to achieve justice and restore peace is also known as transitional justice and post conflict reconstruction (Eisikovits, 2017). How responsibility is allocated in these situations will be investigated in this dissertation. Current scholarship on the topic analyzes the ways in which responsibility is determined post-conflict, be it individual or collective, considering factors such as moral agency and sovereignty (Erskine, 2001). International organizations such as the United Nations (UN) and International Criminal Court (ICC) often step up and determine the ways in which justice processes should be conducted. Scholars are investigating the ethical implications of this alongside of discussions of intervention during a conflict and the duty and obligation to provide assistance to a society as they rebuild post-conflict (Subotic, 2011). Yet, what is missing so far is a discussion of the allocation of responsibilities, most notably those to rebuild society, post conflict. Given this gap in the literature, this dissertation sets out to address the following research question: What are the roles and responsibilities ascribed to the respective actors involved in post-conflict reconstruction? Doing so, this project will identify the roles and responsibilities of the various actors involved in post-conflict reconstruction as well as understand the justifications and criteria for claiming and ascribing responsibilities post-conflict.

    Eisikovits, N. (2017). Transitional Justice, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Edward N. Zalta (ed.), https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/fall2017/entries/justice-transitional

    Erskine, T. (2001). Assigning Responsibilities to Institutional Moral Agents: The Case of States and Quasi-States. Ethics & International Affairs, 15(2), 67-85.

    Subotic, J. (2011). Expanding the scope of post-conflict justice: Individual, state and societal responsibility for mass atrocity. Journal of Peace Research, 48(2), 157–169.

  • Career

    05/2020 Member of the Graduate School of Politics (GraSP), Institute for Political Science, University of Münster.
    2019 Exam Proctor at the Department of Economics, The University of Western Ontario, Canada.
    2018 - 2019 Graduate Teaching Assistant – Women’s Studies and Feminist Research – Introduction to Women’s Studies, University of Western Ontario, Canada.
    2018 - 2019 M.A. Women’s Studies and Feminist Research in Collaboration with Transitional Justice and Post-Conflict Reconstruction, University of Western Ontario, Canada
    2014-2018 B.A. Honors Specialization in Women’s Studies and Feminist Research. Minor in Transitional Justice and Post-Conflict Reconstruction, University of Western Ontario, Canada

  • Publications

    Selected publications

    • Cullen, Laura C. (2020). Female Combatants and the Post-Conflict Process in Sierra Leone. Journal of International Women's Studies, 21(2), 114-125. Available at: https://vc.bridgew.edu/jiws/vol21/iss2/10

    Selected conference talks and papers

    • April 2019: World Women’s Studies Conference – Female Combatants and the Post-Conflict Process in Sierra Leone.
    • 2017: Flaunting It! Women’s Studies Undergraduate Conference - Tomb of the “Forgotten” Soldier: Selective Grief and Remembering at the Canadian National War Memorial.

  • Further Information

    Research interests

    • Post-Conflict Responsibility
    • Transitional Justice and Post-Conflict Reconstruction
    • International Relations and Justice
    • Human Rights

    Awards and scholarships