The Impact of Transitional Justice on Human Rights and Democracy

Professors Leigh Payne (University of Oxford) and Kathryn Sikkink (University of Minnesota) have been awarded a grant by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (UK) (Grant No. AH/I500030/1) and the National Science Foundation (USA) (Grant No. 0961226) in 2010 to carry out research on the impact of transitional justice. This collaborative project explores when, why, and how trials, truth commissions and amnesties advance human rights and democracy. It aims to develop an empirically-tested theory of transitional justice (i.e., human rights trials, truth commissions, and amnesties) to explain its impact on human rights and democracy. It also strives to develop a corresponding set of policy recommendations to achieve those political goals. Dr Francesca Lessa (University of Oxford), Tricia Olsen (University of Denver) and Andrew Reiter (Mount Holyoke College) will be assisting with this project, which will run until October 2012.

The researchers based in Oxford (Dr Francesca Lessa, Mr Gabriel Pereira, Ms Emily Braid, and Mr Pierre Le Goff) funded respectively by the AHRC, the OUP John Fell Research Fund and Oak Philanthropy, studied in-depth over 400 amnesty laws and challenges to amnesties for human rights violations across 76 transitional countries.  

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