Skip to main content

R2P, Early Warning, Conflict & Mass Atrocity Prevention

Project synopsis:

The mass killings of civilians, from South Sudan to Syria, suggest the need to set out a clear agenda to identify early warning mechanisms, as well as to prevent and respond to such atrocities. The ICISS report described prevention as “the single most important dimension of the responsibility to protect" (2001, p. xi). Our research assesses how R2P-related elements and prescriptions interact with the prevention agenda, and we examine the key distinctions between conflict prevention and mass atrocity prevention. While early warning indicators have been extensively developed, crisis response prevention and mass atrocity prevention have received less attention. As the 2013 Report of the UN Secretary-General on R2P – “State Responsibility and Prevention” – suggests, it is imperative to look at the long-term prevention of mass atrocities through assessing what works under what circumstances in order to prevent the escalation of outbreaks of the worst forms of violence. Our research unpacks the R2P’s preventive dimension, focusing on the following research objectives: 1) To conceptualize structural prevention, by stimulating analysis around mass atrocities and assessing progress in approaches to mass atrocity and conflict prevention; 2) To cover the relationship between state and non-state responsibility and prevention; and 3) To elaborate on the range of prevention and response measures available to policy makers to strengthen  domestic, regional, and international preventive and response tools.

Research papers and recent publications in this area:

Gallagher A. 2021. To name and shame or not, and if so, how? A pragmatic analysis of naming and shaming the Chinese government over mass atrocity crimes against the Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities in Xinjiang. Journal of Global Security Studies.

Gallagher A, Raffle E, Maulana Z (2020) ‘Failing to fulfil the responsibility to protect: the war on drugs as crimes against humanity in the Philippines’, The Pacific Review. 33(3), pp.247-277.

Brown G.W. and Bohm, A. (2019) ‘R2P and Prevention: The International Community and the Determinants of State Resilience against Mass Atrocity’. Under review.

Fisher KJ, Stefan CG (2019) ‘Canada and the International Responsibilities to Protect and Prosecute in Cases of Mass Atrocity’. In: McGrane D; Hibbert N (eds.), Applied Political Theory and Canadian Politics. Toronto, Canada: University of Toronto Press, pp. 459-479

Alleblas, T; Aloyo, E; Brockmeier, S; Rotmann, P; Western J (2017) In The Shadow of Syria: Assessing the Obama Administration's Efforts on Mass Atrocity Prevention The Hague Institute for Global Justice, Global Public Policy Institute, Mount Holyoke

African Task Force (2016) 'African Regional Communities and the Prevention of Mass Atrocities' Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention

Newman, E; Aloyo, E. (Forthcoming, 2017 expected). “Preventing the Kinds of Conflicts that are Hardest to Resolve and Most Costly in Lives.” Oxford University Press. Eds. William Durch, Joris Larik, Richard Ponzio.

Barwick, M (2015) 'Before the Unspeakable Occurs: Dialogue and the Prevention of Mass Atrocities' Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention

Barwick, M (2015) 'Interreligious Dialogue and the Prevention of Mass Atrocities' Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention

Trillò, T (2015)  'Gender identity, gender based violence, and the Responsibility to Protect' Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention 

V4 Task Force (2017) 'Capabilities of the Visegrad Group in preventing extremism. Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention'