Global call for papers: “International Humanitarian Law and Peace: Lessons for the Future”

* This call for papers is now closed. *

Call for Papers: “International Humanitarian Law and Peace: Lessons for the Future”

Deadline for Proposals: 15 August 2023

Confirmation of the status of your proposal: 15 September 2023

Deadline for Full Papers: 15 December 2023

International humanitarian law (IHL) aims to limit the effects of armed conflict for humanitarian reasons. It does so by placing limits on the means and methods of warfare, with a view to limiting the destructive effects of war. IHL does not speak to the legitimacy or legality of going to war, nor does it address how parties to an armed conflict may go about restoring peace.

Still, IHL undeniably is tied up in the maintenance of and return to sustainable peace, and some IHL obligations explicitly extend beyond the temporal limits of armed conflict and into the peacebuilding process. 

This edition of the International Review of the Red Cross aims to address the nexus between IHL and peace. In doing so, authors might consider exploring questions such as the following (though this list is far from exhaustive):

  • What role does IHL play in peacebuilding – whether through peace negotiations, accountability for wartime harms, or the design of transitional justice mechanisms? How do or should such transitional justice mechanisms incorporate IHL principles to combine accountability for harm with fostering reconciliation and peace?
  • What role does IHL play in preserving peace – that is, in preventing conflict?
  • What does the concept of jus post bellum entail – and, if so, is it part of IHL or its own legal regime?
  • How and to what extent does IHL weigh forgiveness and accountability in the effort to end conflict and build sustainable peace? What is the scope of IHL’s call for the extension of the “widest possible amnesty”1  when ending non-international armed conflict?
  • What role does or should IHL play in the rights of victims of harm to truth, justice, reparation, and non-recurrence? What entities and regional bodies play a role in this process, and how have they approached these questions differently?
  • How and to what extent does compliance or the lack thereof with IHL facilitate or hinder peacemaking and/or contribute to sustainable peace post-conflict?
  • How does IHL apply to temporary cessations in armed conflict, such as ceasefires? How do such cessations contribute to future peace?
  • To what extent does IHL speak to the rights and needs of civilians and combatants as conflict ends? How does IHL address, for example, the protection of displaced persons and their return post-conflict? What role does or should IHL play in the reintegration of former combatants, or of the families and communities of such combatants?
  • What are the challenges and opportunities in ensuring complementarity between IHL and other legal frameworks in advancing peace objectives?
  • Does international law need a comprehensive, unifying theory on IHL’s role in peace?


Call for proposals

The Review calls for proposals that address the IHL-peace nexus, for publication in Fall 2024. We particularly value proposals with a forward-looking perspective that offer recommendations to improve current legal and humanitarian problems, as well as papers that present innovative and creative arguments that may have an impact on future legal and policy debates.


Submitting your proposal

We invite anyone interested to submit by 15 August 2023, an abstract of maximum 500 words, as well as a biography of maximum 300 words. Note that, if you are invited to submit a paper based on your proposal, the target length for a completed traditional article should be between 8,000 and 10,000 words (including footnotes), though we are open to proposals for other formats (opinion notes, etc.). Our selection process will prioritize innovative proposals that have clear potential to contribute to and advance legal and policy debates in this space in the years ahead.

In the abstract, please include:

  1. title;
  2. main arguments you intend to develop; and
  3. an explanation as to how your topic innovatively adds to the existing literature and fits within the Review’s editorial line (for further reference, please consult our Guidelines for Authors).

Please send these materials in a single Word document to Note that, in line with our ongoing commitment to provide space for a diverse array of voices in this field, we encourage submissions by established and emerging voices alike.

You will be notified as to the status of your proposal by 15 September 2023. If you are invited to submit a full-length article, a draft of your completed article will be due no later than 15 December 2023.

Please note that submissions to this edition will be reviewed by a jury, the membership of which will be announced in the coming weeks.

  • 1See Additional Protocol II, Article 5.6. See also Customary International Law Study, Rule 159. Note that these provisions apply only in non-international armed conflicts.

“International Humanitarian Law and Peace: Lessons for the Future” Jury

The Jury Members