Tagged / law

The Cambodian Experience

Dr Melanie Klinkner shares her experience of undertaking research in Cambodia…

Perhaps it is due to a genetic predisposition to embrace the continental Kaffeehaus tradition of discussing matters for hours on end or simply because of an affinity to the Socratic dialogue, interviewing has been a key component of my research. It would be wrong to say that I am not nervous before each interview or don’t question my methodological approach, but, in general, interviews have been exciting, worthwhile and a superb way to network. I keep being amazed by the generosity of participants in giving up their time, going to the trouble of meeting me, sharing their experience and expertise, sending relevant information or answering follow-up questions.

The experiences from a fieldtrip to Cambodia epitomises the fun of qualitative research for me. On arrival at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia outside the capital Phnom Penh, I was met by the then head of PR who had not only organised an interview schedule with judges, prosecutors and defence lawyers but also offered me a tour of the (then not quite complete) building. Sure, this might have been part of their general public relations efforts, but it was me who benefitted from meeting these individuals. I was the lucky one sitting in the office of a Cambodian participant, with a translator present, conducting an interview whilst feeling strangely observed by the statue of an elusively smiling Khmer head on the top of a cupboard. I was similarly impressed with one interviewee who was on a business trip to Bangkok whilst I visited Phnom Penh, but was still happy to meet me in a Hotel lobby in the centre of Bangkok an hour after my plane from Phnom Penh touched down on Suvanarbhumi Airport. It would also be amiss to forget the other impressions gathered on this trip. The taxi driver who took me to the Extraordinary Chambers each day and dropped me at the Killing fields on the outskirts of Phnom Penh shared his experiences from the Khmer Rouge area. A young TukTuk driver and English language teacher practiced his English by telling me about the education system. Whilst not explicitly relevant to the research – implicitly this information is priceless.

It is with some sadness that I read of the difficulties the Extraordinary Chambers are facing with allegations of corruption, lack of funding, political meddling, the age and death of defendants hampering its progress. Surely Cambodia and the Cambodian people deserve better. Perhaps one day (when the children are older) I will be able to return to Cambodia for an interdisciplinary study to further our understanding as to the forensic, legal but also cultural significance the displayed human remains have within Cambodian Society – they are a fascinating substrate for research. For now, I have one small regret: I should have bought a sculpture of a Khmer head with its elusive smile to put on my book shelve at home.

International Day of the Disappeared 2013

Dr Melanie Klinkner studies the use of forensic science for investigation and prosecution of atrocities such as war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. Here she talks about the International Day of the Disappeared.

Today serves as a reminder of the number of people around the world who are missing as a result of armed conflicts. We remember the families who face a daily struggle to understand what has happened to their loved one.

Dr Melanie KlinknerEnforced disappearances have been and continue to be used by oppressive regimes in an attempt to dispose of political opponents secretly and to instil fear in the population. Article 2 of the Convention for the Protection for all Persons from Enforced Disappearance (2006) defines disappearances as ‘the arrest, detention, abduction or any other form of deprivation of liberty by agents of the State or by persons or groups of persons acting with authorisation, support or acquiescence of the State, followed by a refusal to acknowledge the deprivation of liberty or by concealment of the fate or whereabouts of the disappeared person, which place such a person outside the protection of the law’.

The Red Cross work tirelessly to reunite families where possible and organisations such as the International Commission on Missing Person support identification of bodies.

In the aftermath of conflict and gross human rights violations, there is an overwhelming need of the families is to know the truth about the fate of their loved ones and, where the worst has happened, to receive their human remains as an absolute proof of death and to facilitate burial and commemoration rituals.

This need is mirrored in international human rights and international humanitarian law development, which has advanced the recognition of victim rights of national or international crimes and human rights abuses. The Basic Principles encompass the need for victims and their families to know the truth about what happened to their loved ones and demands that the bodies of those disappeared are recovered, identified and buried.

Melanie works alongside Ian Hanson and Paul Cheetham in the School of Applied Sciences, who have developed standard operating procedures for forensic investigation of mass graves. These have been used internationally in judicial and humanitarian contexts, bringing those responsible for atrocity crimes to justice and providing much needed answers to families.

Read more about the Red Cross

Dr Melanie Klinkner’s profile

International Commission on Missing Persons

CIPPM Spring Lecture Series 2013

The annual series of the Centre for Intellectual Property Policy and Management’s (CIPPM) http://www.cippm.org.uk/ Spring Lectures starts on Thursday 21 February 2013 at 6 pm.

Professor Hector MacQueen, Professor of Private Law at the University of Edinburgh will deliver the first lecture, titled “Ae fond kiss: A Private Matter?” on Thursday 21 February 2013.

Professor MacQueen has written extensively on Intellectual Property law and is author, co-author and editor of a number of books on Intellectual Property law. He was the Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of Edinburgh (1999-2003) and Director of the AHRC Centre for Studies in Intellectual Property and Technology Law (SCRIPT) (2002-2007). In 2010 Professor MacQueen took up an appointment as Scottish Law Commissioner (2010-2014).

CIPPM Spring Lectures take place at 18:00, in the Executive Business Centre, close to the Bournemouth Travel Interchange (89 Holdenhurst Road, BH8 8EB). The lectures are free to attend, but places are limited, and admission to the building closes at 18:15. If you wish to reserve a place, please contact Mandy Lenihan at ALenihan@bournemouth.ac.uk

For further information on forthcoming CIPPM Spring Lectures and for booking information see http://business.bournemouth.ac.uk/news/2013/jan/ne001-cippm-lectures-2013.html

Business Law Seminars

You are warmly invited to attend a series of business law seminars being organised by a group of academics in the Department of Law researching in Business Regulation & Institutions, Trade & Entrepreneurship (cBRITE), who will be working closely with the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Economic Growth:

Stephen Copp “The codification of directors’ duties: raising or lowering standards?” 11.00 – 12.00pm Wednesday 5th December 2012 in PG142

Alison Cronin “White Collar Crime – Why the light touch?  The case for a robust criminal law to reinforce ethical conduct in the commercial world” 1.00 – 2.00pm Wednesday 12th December 2012 in PG146

Sarah McKeown “A Common European Sales Law: Facilitating Cross-Border Trade for SMEs” 11.00 – 12.00pm Wednesday 19th December 2012 in PG142

For further details contact Dr Stephen Copp, Associate Professor, Department of Law, The Business School at scopp@bournemouth.ac.uk

Report from the ESRC Festival of Social Science

Bournemouth University was host to an ESRC Festival of Social Science event on 8 November 2012.  The one-day conference, organized by Professor Martin Kretschmer and colleagues from the Law School, sought to explore the complexities of developing empirical research to support public policy in domains such as copyright law.   In attendance at the conference were stakeholders from the Intellectual Property Office UK, the Cabinet Office, law professionals and academics from around Europe.  The day was structured around a series of panel discussions by representatives from policy, the media industry, and law, prompting lively debate around questions such as: ‘What is the status of qualitative research in policy decision making?’ and ‘How can we reconcile the differing legal and academic standards for evidence?’.

The conference was video recorded with the help of research assistants from the Media School and will be made available in full as a series of digital conference proceedings.

The conference was also an opportunity for Professor Kretschmer, Dr. Kris Erickson and Dr. Dinusha Mendis to present the findings of research they carried out during the IPO consultation on the Hargreaves Review of Intellectual Property.  The research seeks to evaluate possible economic impacts of any future change to UK copyright law to permit parody, caricature and pastiche of existing works.  Currently, parody is not explicitly permitted under UK copyright law.  The authors hope that this type of empirical research will help to illuminate complex public policy questions and strengthen the role of academic research in the policy process.

Below you may view a detailed presentation of the research from the ESRC event.
httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yWbgZ63Ug9k

 

 

 

Justice for Survivors at the International Criminal Court – PhD student’s publication success

Twelve months into her PhD, Law research student Ellie Smith has published an article entitled ‘Investigating Rape at the International Criminal Court: The Impact of Trauma’ in the Issues in International Criminal Justice Journal. Ellie’s current research focuses on the scope for narrative truth at the International Criminal Court, survivor perceptions of justice, and the nature of rehabilitation as a legal remedy for survivors of gross human rights violations. A second article is currently under review with the A-rated Journal of International Criminal Justice.

Ellie joined the University on a full-time studentship. She is a Visiting Research Fellow at the Centre on Human Rights, University of East London, and has 10 years of experience in the conduct of multi-disciplinary (legal and clinical) and intersectional research in the field of justice for victims of gross human rights violations, including for eight years as Lead Researcher for the Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture. She is a member of the Victims’ Rights Working Group to the Coalition for the International Criminal Court, and has also served as a member of the Expert Advisory Panel to the British Home Office on the Trafficking of Women. Ellie achieved a Degree in law from Girton College, Cambridge University (1992) and a Masters Degree in Law from the London School of Economics (2000). She qualified as a solicitor in 1994.

You can access a copy of Ellie’s article online here: http://www.iccsn.com/IICJ2012.pdf