The publications listed here represent a small selection of the work of staff members of the GCILS. To see full listings of publications please click through to the University of Glasgow main webpages in each individual staff member profile.

Humanizing the Laws of War: The Red Cross and the Development of International Humanitarian Law

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Over the past 150 years, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has been one of the main drivers of progressive development in international humanitarian law, whilst assuming various roles in the humanization of the laws of war. With select contributions from international experts, this book critically assesses the ICRC's unique influence in international norm creation. It provides a detailed analysis of the workings of the International Red Cross, Red Crescent Movement and ICRC by addressing the milestone achievements as well as the failures, shortcomings and controversies over time. Crucially, the contributions highlight the lessons to be learnt for future challenges in the development of international humanitarian law. This book will be of particular interest to scholars and students of international law, but also to practitioners working in the field of international humanitarian law at both governmental and non-governmental organizations.

Andreas Zimmermann
Stefanie Haumer

Human Rights Watch v Secretary of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office : victim status, extraterritoriality and the search for principled reasoning

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In Human Rights Watch v Secretary of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office the UK Investigatory Powers Tribunal found that the relevant standard of ‘victim status’ that applies in secret surveillance cases consists in a potential risk of being subjected to surveillance and that the European Convention on Human Rights does not apply to the surveillance of individuals who reside outside of the UK. This note argues that the Tribunal's finding regarding the victim status of the applicants was sound but that the underlying reasoning was not. It concludes that the Tribunal's finding on extraterritoriality is unsatisfactory and that its engagement with the European Court of Human Rights case law on the matter lacked depth. Finally, the note considers the defects of the Human Rights Watch case, and the case law on extraterritoriality more generally, against the backdrop of the place of principled reasoning in human rights adjudication.

Modern Law Review, 80(3), pp. 510-524. (doi:10.1111/1468-2230.12268)

Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems: Technology, Definition, Ethics, Law & Security

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The rapid evolution of new military technologies poses significant challenges. Autonomous weapons systems in particular are set to revolutionise the ways wars are fought. The trend towards gradually increasing autonomy in military systems in general and in weapons systems in particular will continue in the future. Various significant strategic and operational advantages are associated with autonomous weapons systems. They are far more capable to adapt to and cope with the complexity, accelerated pace and data processing requirements of the modern battlefield than human soldiers. Factors that may cause stress, wrong decisions, or excess in human soldiers such as fear, anger, or hatred are absent in a robot. And they can perform the dull, dirty, and dangerous tasks and do so without exhaustion or any imminent risk to human life. But the development towards autonomous weapons systems also carries significant risks. Concerns are varied and range from fears of a new arms race; qualms over unpredictable battlefield activities and resultant responsibility gaps; doubts as to these systems’ ability to reliably abide by international humanitarian and human rights law; to ethical concerns over a devaluation of human life and dignity if life and death decisions are ceded to algorithms. Against this background, this edited volume contains a collection of expert opinions delivered at the third CCW informal meeting of experts on lethal autonomous weapons systems in April 2016.

International Investment Law and the Global Financial Architecture

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This book addresses how international investment law interacts with the (re-)regulation of financial and capital markets, in particular in the sovereign debt and banking sectors. It considers where the line should be drawn between legitimate regulation and undue interference with investor rights and, equally importantly, who draws it.

Stephan W. Schill
Rainer Hofmann

The ECHR and Human Rights Theory: Reconciling the Moral and the Political Conceptions

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The European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR) has been relatively neglected in the field of normative human rights theory. This book aims to bridge the gap between human rights theory and the practice of the ECHR. In order to do so, it tests the two overarching approaches in human rights theory literature: the ethical and the political, against the practice of the ECHR ‘system’. The book also addresses the history of the ECHR and the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) as an international legal and political institution. The book offers a democratic defence of the authority of the ECtHR. It illustrates how a conception of democracy – more specifically, the egalitarian argument for democracy developed by Thomas Christiano on the domestic level – can illuminate the reasoning of the Court, including the allocation of the margin of appreciation on a significant number of issues. Alain Zysset argues that the justification of the authority of the ECtHR – its prominent status in the domestic legal orders – reinforces the democratic process within States Parties, thereby consolidating our status as political equals in those legal and political orders.

International Humanitarian Law : A Comprehensive Introduction

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"International Humanitarian Law: A Comprehensive Introduction" is an introductory handbook that aims to promote and strengthen knowledge of international humanitarian law (IHL) among academics, weapon-bearers, humanitarian workers and media professionals. It presents contemporary issues related to IHL in an accessible and practical style, and in line with the ICRC’s reading of the law. That, plus its distinctive format – combining “In a nutshell”, “To go further” and thematic textboxes – make it the ideal everyday companion for anyone approaching IHL for the first time and curious about conflict-related matters, as well as for military and humanitarian personnel seeking useful guidance on a vast array of topics.