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Human Rights, Armed Conflicts, and the Law of Peace and Security

This multi-disciplinary research group focuses on the normative, procedural, and institutional aspects of implementing human rights in situations of armed conflicts and emergencies, as well as on the law of peace and security.

About the group - and its context

The research group’s focus areas also include different human rights issues relating to post-conflict situations and societies in transition. These broad areas of research are approached from legal, ethical-philosophical, and socio-political perspectives. Situations involving the use of force, although to varying degrees and subject to different rules, range from internal disturbances and tensions, such as riots, isolated and sporadic acts of violence or other acts of a similar nature, to high-intensity non-international or international armed conflicts. Several countries have experienced emergency situations caused by terrorist attacks or other major threats to public order and security.

Since 1945 there have been more than 100 armed conflicts in different parts of the world. These armed conflicts have resulted in mass atrocity crimes costing the lives of millions of individuals, dire humanitarian crises through large displacements of populations, threats to, and breaches of, international peace and security, and enormous challenges concerning the rebuilding of these conflict-shattered societies.

The extraterritorial application of human rights, as well as the application of economic, social and cultural rights in armed conflict situations, promise to extend the boundaries and understanding of the relevant law on international responsibility for States and non-State armed groups. Further, in recent years, philosophical discussions of the morality of war, have seen the rise of an important revisionist movement, which questions traditional assumptions in just war theory, such as the moral equality of combatants and the immunity of civilians. This revisionist trend widens the gap between the morality of war and international law, and thus raises important questions about the relationship between the morality of war and the law of war.

We research the evolution of the international law of peace from the procedural aspects of peaceful dispute resolution in judicial and non-judicial mechanisms, from the ICJ to mediation processes, as well as substantive topics, including sustainable peace, gendered peace, constitutional peace, positive peace (non-discrimination and equality), culture of peace education, and the inter-play with other values, such as Solidarity, Development, Environment, and Common Interests of Humankind.

Methods of work

The research group’s overall ambition is to provide an open forum for discussing cutting-edge research and to serve as a sounding board for those working on developing individual or joint research projects.

To that aim, the group shall hold regular meetings, hosting presentations by its members, or guests, on a variety of topics within its thematic scope.
Also, the group plans to organize conferences and other academic events, such as seminars, guest lectures, book launches and so on.


This research group works in close cooperation and coordination with other research groups and centres at the Faculty of Law, including the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights, Department of Criminology and Sociology of Law, and PluriCourts. Close cooperation is sought with external Oslo-based research institutions, such as NUPI, PRIO, ILPI, NMF, Norwegian Red Cross, Norwegian Refugee Council, and the International Law Association – Norwegian Branch.
The research group is open to exploring forms of academic cooperation with other research and educational institutions on topics of common interest.

Relevant research topics include

  • Human rights and global justice;
  • Root causes of armed conflicts, conflict prevention, and measures to address gender-based violence;
  • Relationship between international human rights, IHL, and international criminal law; protection of persons and objects under IHL; reparations for serious violations of human rights and IHL;
  • Privatization of war and the law on international responsibility;
  • Drones, autonomous weapons, and other new military technologies;
  • International criminal justice and human rights protection;
  • Interpretation, development, and enforcement of human rights and IHL by international criminal courts and tribunals and by regional courts;
  • Human rights in the context of emergency situation (riots and internal disturbances);
  • Peace missions and humanitarian operations by the UN and regional organizations;
  • Institutional and other aspects of the responsibility to protect doctrine;
  • Transitional justice and societal transformation processes in post-conflict societies;
  • Humanitarianism, humanitarian assistance, and conflict resolution;
  • Legal pluralism and traditional forms of conflict resolution and accountability;
  • Role of active citizenship and participation in societal transformation processes in post-conflict societies;
  • Domestic implementation of international human rights and IHL;
  • Counter-terrorism, prevention of radicalization, and human rights
  • The Law of Peace and Solidarity at the international and transnational levels
  • Negative Peace and Positive Peace as implemented by courts, state institutions, IOs, NGOs, and civil society

Combining cutting-edge research and education

The Norwegian Centre for Human Rights offers a two-year Master's programme in human rights with many courses which are relevant to this research group. There are several other relevant courses offered by other departments of the Law Faculty. Some of the courses taught by researchers who are part of this research group include:

  • JUS5730/JUR1730 - International Humanitarian Law (The Law of Armed Conflict);
  • HUMR5132 - Human Rights Law in Context;
  • JUS5134 - The International Law of Peace;
  • JUS5570 - International Criminal Law;
  • JUS5503 - Human Rights and Counter-Terrorism: Striking a Balance?;
  • HUMR5502 - Dealing with Diversity: Human Rights Approaches to Ethnic Conflict (discontinued);
  • KRIM4956 - International Criminal Justice and Mass Violence;
  • RSOS4951 - Legal Mobilization and Grassroots Organizing for Social Justice (discontinued);
  • RSOS2950 - Torture, Surveillance and Rights (discontinued);
  • ISSJF4711 - Human Rights (UiO International Summer School).



  • Gentian Zyberi
  • Cecilia Marcela Bailliet
  • Kristin Bergtora Sandvik
  • Jakob Elster
  • Anna Andersson
  • Jo Martin Stigen
  • Kjersti Lohne
  • Knut D. Asplund
  • Kim Christian Priemel
  • Jasna Jozelic
  • Maja Janmyr
  • Anna Maria Charlotta Lundberg
  • Nils August Andresen Butenschøn
  • Juan Pablo Pérez León Acevedo
  • Torhild Breidlid
  • Arne Willy Dahl
  • Mads Harlem
  • Tom S. Syring
  • Gro Nystuen
  • Carola Lingaas
  • Silje Aambø Langvatn
  • Kelly Nicole Arnesen
  • Jo Andreas Sannem
  • Lars Christie
  • Camilla Guldahl Cooper
  • Sigrid Redse Johansen
  • Bödvar Ingvarsson
Published Mar. 8, 2017 2:22 PM - Last modified Oct. 24, 2022 1:53 PM