Barry Collins

Barry Collins is currently Head of the Department of Law and Criminology at UEL. He has published on a range of themes relating to human rights, conflict, international law, employment law and legal theory.

He has also been a visiting lecturer in Australia, Russia, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. He has taught courses on International Law, International Criminal Law, Employment Law, Legal Theory and Human Rights.

His recent publications include: 

  • Defining the Employee in the Gig Economy: Untangling the Web of Contract, forthcoming in E. Yerby and R. Page Tickell (eds.)
  • The Gig Economy and Human Resource Management: Conflict, Compromise and New Boundaries, Conflict and Shifting Boundaries in the Gig Economy, (Bingley: Emerald: 2020)
  • Human Rights as Acts of Faith: Universal Jurisdiction and the Law of Historical Memory in Spain, in Kalliopi Chainoglou, Barry Collins, Michael Phillips and John Strawson (eds.)
  • Injustice, Memory and Faith in Human Rights, (London and New York: Routledge, 2017)
  • Human Rights Cinema: The Act of Killing and the Act of Watching
  • No Foundations: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Law and Justice (2017), 65-86

John Strawson

Professor John Strawson works in the areas of international law and Middle East studies with special interests in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, law and post-colonialism and Islamic law.

He was a founder member of the Centre on Human Rights in Conflict and served as its Director 2010-2013 and was co-director with Professor Sriram 2013-2015.

He has held visiting positions at the International Institute of Social Studies (The Hague) and was visiting professor at Birzeit University, Palestine (1996-2006) and was visiting Professor of Law at the International Islamic University Malaysia in 2007.

He teaches courses on the LLM and supervises research students. He is an advisory editor of Fathom Journal.

His publications, editorial and public work include: 

Members of the Centre

Research students

Mertkan Hamit 

Mertkan's PhD project is entitled: "Re-thinking about the universality of human rights and the reflections of the human rights discourse on the identity issue in Cyprus". His research aims to interrogate universality of the human rights discourse in the light of the critical legal theory.

The case study will be focusing on the human rights discourses in two parts of Cyprus. Cyprus conflict is one of the frozen conflicts, and it is sustained, in addition to many other factors also with the antagonism in many spheres to the "other" side. From this perspective, human rights discourses in Cyprus will be analyzed in order to provide a basis to make the critic of the universality. While doing this, the identity and the human rights discourses will be elaborated together, in order to understand if the human rights are "universal" or it is merely "community centric".

Kerry-Luise Prior 

Kerry holds a BA in European Studies with a major in EU law from the University of Maastricht. Furthermore, she holds an LLM in Globalization and Law with a major in Human Rights Law from the same University. She graduated from her LLM with cum laude and investigated the access to justice in the Americas in a comparative analysis with the European system.

Kerry also holds an MA in International Peace and Security from King's College London where she graduated with distinction writing her thesis on the transitional justice process in Colombia. Her doctoral project is entitled 'Accountability Mechanisms as a Tool to Sustainable Peace in Colombia'. The Colombian peace process is an example of using transitional justice mechanisms as a tool to drive a country out of a more than 50 year old armed conflict.

Within the wider framework of transitional justice, accountability mechanisms play an important role as they can establish the truth of past crimes, they can provide justice to victims of the conflict and can hold perpetrators accountable. However, in the referendum held on 2 October 2016, slightly more than the majority of voters decided against the proposed peace agreement. The question then arises whether the proposed accountability mechanisms were trusted to bring peace and justice. If it is perceived within society that the proposed accountability mechanisms would grant impunity it might also put the prospects for sustainable peace at risk.

This project studies the accountability mechanisms proposed in the peace agreement and analyses whether they serve and lead to the desired outcomes. It seeks to understand if and what the Colombian peace agreement may offer to the overall developments within the design, use and applicability of transitional justice accountability mechanisms.

Sara Solmone

Sara Solmone studied her BA in International Communication at the University for Foreigners of Perugia (2005) and completed her LLM in International Relations in 2010 at the University of Perugia. The title of her doctoral project is "The concept of State jurisdiction online and respect for human rights in contemporary international law". This project investigates both the concept of State jurisdiction online and the role played by States and non-State actors (such as Internet Service Providers - ISPs) in granting the fulfilment of human rights in cyberspace.

The research intends to determine whether and how the concept of State jurisdiction changes when human rights violations occur in the virtual space, rather than in a clearly identifiable physical location. The research intends to identify the positive and negative obligations that States must obey to guarantee human rights in cyberspace pursuant to the human rights conventions to which they are a signatory. The research also intends to establish how States comply with these obligations and the role played by non-State actors in granting the fulfilment of human rights in cyberspace. An analysis of State jurisdiction on the Internet will be undertaken to understand which acts, whether commissive or omissive, the States must enforce to protect anyone who is subject to their jurisdiction from human rights violations on the Internet.

Therefore, on the one hand, this analysis will help clarify the standards of protection that the States must achieve according to their ratified human rights conventions, the subjects towards whom this protection must be directed, and the applying limitations. On the other hand, the research will explain the positive obligations with which States must comply to promote human rights in cyberspace and how they fulfil these obligations.

Considering that multiple actors influence and participate in regulating the Web to achieve the protection of human rights, the research also intends to interrogate the role of non-State actors in this process, such as ISPs.


Past research students

Sylvie Namwase

Sylvie Namwase studied her BA in law (2008), at Makerere University, Uganda. She completed her LLM in Human Rights and Democratisation in Africa in 2011 at the University of Pretoria, Centre for Human Rights, South Africa. She has recently co-edited the volume Protecting the human rights of sexual minorities in contemporary Africa (Pretoria University Law Press, 2017). Her doctoral project is entitled "The use of force against demonstrators: law enforcement versus crimes against humanity." This project considers the recent spate of civilian uprisings against states, manifesting as public demonstrations, with some bordering on armed conflict and others eventually evolving into it. It explores numerous instances in which some states have retaliated with lethal force, provoking accusations of crimes against humanity from the international community, and the retaliatory arguments that such use of force constituted law enforcement in line with their national laws. The study posits that the current international regimes on right to life, crimes against humanity and certain concepts in international humanitarian law (IHL) which offer the closest universal standard on states' use of force need to be comprehensively defined and their scopes clarified to adequately address the challenges presented by the interaction between law enforcement and armed conflict contexts, given the changing nature of mass demonstrations and civilian uprisings against the state.

Dr Sylvie Namwase, who recently passed her viva voce with no corrections on 27 March 2017 has just accepted an offer for a one and half year Post Doctorate at the Centre for Resolution of International Conflicts (CRIC) at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. Sylvie will be working on the CRIC's current main project: 'Human Rights and Peace building', which is funded by the Carlsberg Foundation for the period 2015-2019. She will be working under the expert supervision of CRIC's Director - Professor Ole Waever and the wider team at CRIC.

Farid Mohammed Rashid

‌Farid studied his BA in law (2004), at Aleppo University, Syria. He completed his LLM in International Law and Criminal Justice in 2010 at the University of East London, UK. His doctoral project was entitled "The Role of the Prosecutor in the International Criminal Court: Discretion, Legitimacy and the Politics of Justice".

This project explored the confines of the Prosecutorial discretion of the ICC Prosecutor through critically analysing the criteria of the exercise of the discretionary function, as laid down in the ICC Statute during all stages of initiating investigations and prosecutions. Also, it sheds light on the Prosecutor's power in securing cooperation from international actors to give effect to his or her discretionary decisions.

The research was framed within the tension between law and politics through discussing critically the objectivity theory of international law and international principle. It further examined the relationship between international law and international politics in the context of the prosecutorial discretion of international crimes. Dr Farid Rashid passed his viva in December 2016.

Members of the Centre on Human Rights in Conflict

Professor Siraj Sait

Professor of law and development at the University of East London and United Nations consultant on land and housing, human rights and gender equality, refugee research and conflict resolution, public finance and financial inclusion, particularly in the Middle East. He was a founder member of the Centre on Human Rights in Conflict.

His appointments include Chair of the Law Drafting Committee for Benadir Somalia, Chair of the UN Iraq Projects Evaluation Group and Member of the UN-Habitat High Level Advisory Group on Gender Issues (AGGI). He is Director of the Centre for Islamic Finance, Law and Communities (CIFLAC).

He is a graduate of Universities of Madras, Harvard and London, served as a Public Prosecutor, Supreme Court commissioner advocate and worked in the Solicitor General's office in India.

He works with UN-Habitat, UNICEF, UNHCR and FAO.

Siraj Sait addressing the World Association for Sustainable Development on Human Rights based approaches to women's leadership, 19 August 2019.

Catherine Hobby

Catherine Hobby works in the areas of Employment Law, Industrial Relations, Public Law and Human Rights. She has taught at UEL for over twenty-five years.  She qualified as a solicitor in 1991 and before becoming a full-time member of staff in 1993, worked as a consultant at the charity Public Concern at Work (now Protect). She works in the areas of Employment Law, Industrial Relations, Public Law and Human Rights. She currently teaches modules on Public Law on the LLB degree course and Advocacy on the LLM.  Catherine is a mediator and the co-director of the UEL Centre for Mediation and Conflict Management.

Her publications include:

Dr Farid Rashid

Farid Rashid works in the area of international criminal law with special focus on the role of prosecutor in international criminal justice. He studied his BA in law (2004), at the University of Aleppo, Syria. He completed his LLM in International Law and Criminal Justice in 2010 and was awarded his PhD in December 2016 at the University of East London (UEL).

His thesis focused on the role and powers of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, titled 'The Role of the Prosecutor in the International Criminal Court: Discretion, Legitimacy, and the Politics of Justice'.  

He is currently teaching international criminal law at UEL. He is also a member of the BHRE research group at the University of Greenwich, where he develops research on environmental-related crimes and international criminal accountability.

He is currently writing a book on the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. His publications include:  The Hidden discretionary capacity of the ICC prosecutor: revisiting the analysis of legal and relative gravity, International Journal of Human Rights, Vol. 24, No. 6 (2020), 733-795

Abigail Jackson

Abigail is a Solicitor Advocate (All Higher Courts), Mediator and Lecturer in Law at the University of East London. Prior to joining UEL in September 2016, she worked as a solicitor for Simmons & Simmons LLP and the Treasury Solicitor's Department. She has also taught law at Birmingham City University and Birkbeck, University of London.

Abigail's research interests are in housing law, human rights, localism and the city. Using techniques from legal geography, her research investigates how the law affects our experience of space, as well as the way that it creates social norms and practices. She is currently looking at the operation of selective licensing and in particular, how the scheme works in the London Borough of Newham.  

Terri Kim

Terri Kim (PhD London) is a Reader in Comparative Higher Education in the School of Education and Communities; an Honorary Senior Research Associate at the UCL Institute of Education; and a Principal Fellow of Higher Education Academy (PFHEA). Previously she was a visiting scholar in International Relations at LSE; visiting scholar at the Collège de France in Paris, and Distinguished Visiting Scholar at Monash University in Melbourne.

She is a co-convenor of the SRHE Policy Network; the Book Review Editor of Comparative Education; and a member of four major international journals: Comparative Education; Intercultural Education; British Journal of Educational Studies; and Policy Reviews in Higher Education. She is an Associate Editor of The Sage Encyclopaedia of Higher Education (forthcoming).

She has published one book and over 40 articles internationally in the field of comparative higher education. She has strong interdisciplinary research interest in the relations of territory, mobility and identity; empires, nationalism, cosmopolitanism, coloniality, interculturality; citizenship and the issues of equity and diversity, statelessness and human rights; social history of universities, varieties of academic capitalism, state-university relations, university governance, the academic profession and leadership in HE. Her long-term and ongoing research has been on transnational academic mobility/migration, knowledge creation and identity capital.

She is currently leading a Leadership Foundation for Higher Education (LFHE)-funded research project on 'Tracking Impact of BME Leadership Development Programme' as a two-year longitudinal study.

Annalisa Meloni, Senior Lecturer

Dr Annalisa Meloni graduated with a LLB in English and European Laws from the University of Essex in 1998. She then studied at University College London where she received her LLM in 1999 and her PhD in 2005. Her research interests focus on the European Union's laws and policies relating to external border controls.

Aaron Winter, Senior Lecturer

Dr Aaron Winter, BA Honours in Political Science (York, Canada), MA in Philosophy and Social Theory (Warwick, UK), DPhil in Social and Political Thought (Sussex, UK), is Senior Lecturer in Criminology and Criminal Justice at UEL. His research is on organised racism, right-wing extremism, terrorism and hate crime (with a particular focus on the US, Canada and Britain) and has been interviewed about these by the BBC, CBC, The Times, LBC and Dundee Courier.

He is co-editor of Discourses and Practices of Terrorism: Interrogating Terror (Routledge, 2010), New Challenges for the EU Internal Security Strategy (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2013) and Reflexivity in Criminological Research Experiences with the Powerful and the Powerless (Palgrave, 2014).

He has also contributed to Religion and Violence: An Encyclopedia of Faith and Conflict (M.E.Sharpe, 2010), Encyclopedia of American Street Crime (Sage, 2013) and several edited collections including Extremism in America (University Press Florida, 2014). He is a Trustee of the British Sociological Association (BSA), co-convener of the BSA Race and Ethnicity Study Group, coordinator of the Race, Ethnicity and Migration Stream for the BSA Annual Conference and on the editorial board of the journal Sociological Research Online.

Past staff and visiting fellows

Past Staff

Johanna Herman

Johanna was Research Assistant (2006-2008), Research Fellow (2008-2015) and Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Director of the CHRC (20015-2017). Her areas of research interests included transitional justice, peacebuilding and human rights. Her personal research was on the Khmer Rouge tribunal in Cambodia, focusing on the participation of victims as civil parties. She led the project "Local voices in internationalised justice" on this topic funded by the Nuffield Foundation. She was part of a CHRC team that delivered human rights and conflict resolution training to young people in northern Cyprus as part of the EuropeAid funded project, Youthtopia in 2014/2015.

Johanna worked as a researcher on a wide range of CHRC projects.  These were: the ESRC/NWO project "The impact of transitional justice on democratic institution-building", the USIP funded project "Transitional Justice as Peacebuilding?", the EU FP VII project "Building a Just and Durable Peace by Piece" and the British Academy Large Grant "Rule of Law in African countries emerging from violent conflict: critical issues and cases".

She co-authored three editions of War, Conflict and Human Rights: Theory and Practice with her colleagues at the Centre and co-edited Transitional Justice and Peacebuilding on the GroundPeacebuilding and Rule of Law in Africa: Just Peace? and Surviving Field Research: Working in Violent and Difficult Situations. Johanna received her MA in International Affairs from Columbia University's School of International And Public Affairs in 2006, with a concentration in human rights. She holds a BA in Social and Political Sciences from Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. She has worked in various capacities for UN-HABITAT and the United Nations Development Programme in Japan, Afghanistan and New York and has work experience with a number of international NGOs.


Olga Martin-Ortega

Olga was a Senior Research Fellow at the CHRC (2006-2012) and a member of the Management Team at the CHRC (2010-2012). Whilst at the CHRC she conducted research in the areas of business and human rights in conflict zones, post-conflict reconstruction and transitional justice. She leads the British Academy Small Grant "The role of hybrid courts in the institutional and substantive development of international criminal justice. A study of the War Crimes Chamber of the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina" (2010-2012) and participated in the large projects: "Transitional Justice as Peacebuilding?", United States Institute For Peace Research Grant (2010-2012); "Just and Durable Peace by Piece", European Union VII Framework Collaborative Project, coordinated by the University of Lund (Sweden) (2008-2011) and "Rule of law in African countries emerging from violent conflict: critical issues and cases", British Academy Large Research Grant (2007-2010).

Valerie Arnould

‌Valerie Arnould was a Research Fellow on the research project looking at the impact of transitional justice measures on democratic institution-building ( The project was funded by the ESRC and undertaken in collaboration with the Netherlands Institute of Human Rights at Utrecht University.

She holds a PhD and MA in War Studies from King's College London and degrees in international relations and international law from the Universite Libre de Bruxelles. Her dissertation focused on the domestic politics of transitional justice in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. After finishing her PhD she was a visiting lecturer on the human rights programme at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa.

She previously worked as a research fellow at the Royal Institute for International Relations (Egmont Institute) in Brussels, and as a senior analyst for Central Africa and francophone West Africa at a London-based strategic intelligence company. 

Elizabeth Rhoads

Elizabeth Rhoads was the Research Administrator on the research project looking at the impact of transitional justice measures on democratic institution-building (  She received her MA in Human Rights Law from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. She also holds a bachelor's degree in Cultural Anthropology with a concentration in Peace and Conflict Studies from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania.

Elizabeth is a former Fulbright Research Fellow (Indonesia, 2007-2008) and has spent four years working and researching in Southeast Asia. She has several years' experience working at various rights and educational non-profits in the U.S., U.K., Indonesia, and Myanmar. Her interests include transitional justice, armed conflicts in Southeast Asia, and the role of civil society in democratic transitions.


Past Visiting Fellows


Professor Tom Hadden is Emeritus Professor at the School of Law, Queen's University, Belfast and was appointed as a Visiting Fellow at the CHRC to enable collaboration specifically on work relating to minority rights, integration and social cohesion. Prof. Hadden has written extensively in the field of human rights law, including issues of emergency law and minority rights, and is a recognised expert in these fields. He has worked with the UN Working Group on Minorities, the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities on issues of integration and separate provision for minorities.

From 28 April-8 May 2014, Dr  Thomas Obel Hansen was a Visiting Research Fellow at the CHRC in connection to a British Academy-funded research project, headed by Professor Chandra Lekha Sriram, concerning "The role of civil society in promoting accountability for serious crimes in Kenya".  Thomas is currently employed as an assistant professor of international law with United States International University in Nairobi, Kenya. He holds a PhD in law from Aarhus University Law School in Denmark (2010). Thomas' research focuses on transitional justice and international criminal law.

Despoina-Betty Kaklamanidou, Visiting Research Fellow 2012-2013 at the School of Law and Social Sciences at UEL. She has been teaching Film History and Theory at the Film Studies Department at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece since 2005. She is currently conducting research on how film can be used as teaching tool for the dissemination of good practices concerning citizenship issues.

Dr Kalliopi Chainoglou, Research Fellow 2012-2013, Visiting Research Fellow 2014-2015. During her time with the centre Kalliopi worked on an interdisciplinary research project which brings together issues of media literacy, human rights awareness and the evolving concept of European active citizenship.

Ellie Smith, Visiting Researcher 2011.  Ellie is an international human rights lawyer and researcher with 10 years of experience in the field of justice for survivors of torture, reparations and victims' rights.

Dr Ruth Abril Stoffels, Visiting Researcher, June-July 2011. Dr  Abril is Reader at the Universidad Cardenal Herrera CEU of Valencia. During her stay at the Centre Dr Abril is conducting research on women and girls in peace-building operations. Her work on humanitarian assistance is internationally recognised and has won the Paul Reuter Award in 2003.

Dr Elena Lopez-Almansa Beaus, Visiting Researcher, November-December 2009. During her stay at the CHRC Dr Lopez Almansa Beaus conducted research on the illegal exploitation of natural resources in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Dr  Carmen Draghici, Leverhulme Visiting Fellow, January 2008-January 2009. During her stay at the Centre Dr Draghici undertook the research project on 'The search for a fair balance between the imperative of national security and the protection of human rights in the recent case law of the European Courts concerning the 'blacklists' of alleged terrorists'. She also coordinated the organisation of the Interdisciplinary Research Seminar on Counterterrorism, Human Rights and International Legality which gathered perspectives from scholars, practitioners, human rights activists.

Honorary fellows

Johanna Herman

Johanna Herman worked at the Centre on Human Rights in Conflict from 2006 - 2017.  She became a Research Fellow in 2008, and in 2015 was appointed Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Director of the Centre. Johanna received her MA in International Affairs from Columbia University's School of International And Public Affairs in 2006, with a concentration in human rights. She holds a BA in Social and Political Sciences from Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. She has worked in various capacities for UN-HABITAT and the United Nations Development Programme in Japan, Afghanistan and New York and has work experience with a number of international NGOs.

She is now combining her human rights background with training in full-stack web development at Founders & Coders to work in the tech for good field. 

Jeremie Gilbert

Jérémie Gilbert is Professor of Human Rights Law at the University of Roehampton, United Kingdom. Jérémie worked at UEL from 2013 - 2017 as a Reader, and then received his professorial chair in 2015. Previously he was a Senior Lecturer in Law at Middlesex University, a Lecturer in Human Rights at the Transitional Justice Institute (University of Ulster) and a teaching fellow at the European Masters in Human Rights and Democratisation (Venice).

Beforehand he worked for different NGOs such as the South Asia Human Rights Documentation Centre in New Delhi and Greenpeace both France and Canada. He holds a PhD in International Law (2004-Galway), an L.L.M. (Masters) in Human Rights (2001-Galway) and a Maîtrise en Droit International Public (2000-Montreal) and a Licence en Droit (1999- Paris X).

His main area of research is on international human rights law, and more particularly the rights of minorities and indigenous peoples. He has published various books, articles and book chapters on the rights of indigenous peoples, looking in particular at their right to land. His latest monograph is 'Nomadic Peoples and Human Rights' (Routledge, 2014).

Edel Hughes

Dr Edel Hughes is a Senior Lecturer in Law at the University of Middlesex.  She worked at UEL from 2012-2017.  She graduated from University College Cork, Ireland, in 2002 with a BCL (Law and French). She was awarded an LLM and PhD degrees in International Human Rights Law from the National University of Ireland, Galway in 2003 and 2009 respectively. Prior to joining the University of East London, Edel was a lecturer in law at the School of Law, University of Limerick, Ireland, from 2006 and 2011.

Edel's main research interests are in the area of international human rights law and she has published widely in this area. Her research to date has focused on human rights and conflict, freedom of religion, and minority rights, with a regional interest in Turkey and the Middle East.

She has also engaged in research and advocacy work for various non-governmental human rights organisations, including Relatives for Justice and the Kurdish Human Rights Project. Currently, she is a member of the Council of Experts of the Democratic Progress Institute and a member of the advisory board of the Center for Conflict Resolution Studies and Research at Istanbul Bilgi University.

Advisory Board


  • Professor Kamel Abu Jaber, University of Jordan, and former Foreign Minister of Jordan.
  • Dr Karin Aggestam, Associate Professor, Director, Peace and Conflict Studies, Lund University.
  • Professor Richard A. Falk, Albert G. Milbank Professor of International Law and Practice, Emeritus, Princeton University, and Visiting Professor of Global Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara.
  • Professor Ravindra Fernando, Director, Centre for the Study of Human Rights, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka.
  • Andres Franco, UNICEF Representative in Peru, and former Ambassador of Colombia to the United Nations.
  • Dr Mudar Kassis, Director of the Institute of Law, Birzeit University, Palestine.
  • Andrew Mack, Professor, Simon Fraser University, and Director, Liu Centre for Human Security.
  • Dr Julie Mertus, Associate Professor, American University, and Co-Director, Center for Ethics, Peace, and Global Affairs.
  • Dr Ziba Mir-Hosseini, Senior Research Associate, London Middle East Institute, School of Oriental and African Studies.
  • Michelle Parlevliet, human rights, conflict transformation and peacebuilding practitioner, currently a guest researcher at the Law Faculty, University of Amsterdam. 
  • Kishali Pinto-Jayawardena, Director, Legal Unit, Law and Society Trust, Colombo, Sri Lanka.
  • Professor Oliver P. Richmond, School of International Relations, University of St. Andrews, and Director, Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of St. Andrews.
  • Dr Roshan de Silva-Wijeyeratne, Lecturer, Griffith Law School, Australia
  • Professor George Williams, Anthony Mason Professor and Director, Gilbert and Tobin Centre of Public Law, Faculty of Law, University of New South Wales, Australia.
  • Ruti Teitel, Ernst C. Stiefel Professor of Comparative Law, New York Law School and Visiting Fellow, London School of Economics
  • Professor Rebecca M.M.Wallace, Director of the Centre on Rural Childhood, University of the Highlands, United Kingdom.