Event details
Event Start Date: 31/08/2016
Event End Date: 31/08/2016
Time: 1.00 - 2.00pm

Location: UNSW Law Building, Level 3, Room 388
(F8 on the Campus Map)

UN Interoperability and Responses to Forced Displacement

A presentation by Professor Geoff Gilbert, University of Essex

On 31 August 2016, the Kaldor Centre hosted a presentation by Professor Geoff Gilbert, University of Essex.

Last year, roughly 24 people were displaced each minute. Yet, the average length of time spent as a displaced person is now 20 years.

These stark facts highlight the need to rethink the nature of solutions to displacement, beyond the traditional three durable solutions of voluntary repatriation, resettlement and local integration.

In this presentation, Professor Geoff Gilbert argues that the UN’s responses to refugees must be reconsidered. He suggests that solutions to displacement should be seen as a process, and that the UN should move away from the traditional dichotomies of ‘protection versus solutions’ and ‘humanitarian versus development’ assistance.

Professor Gilbert considers whether the UN’s Rule of Law approach might provide the basis for greater ‘interoperability’ (coordinated interaction) between the various UN agencies, thus achieving more effective solutions to displacement.

Powerpoint slides from this presentation can be viewed here.

iTunes subscribeUN Interoperability and Responses to Forced Displacement
Jane McAdam, Director, Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law, UNSW
31 August 2016


About the Speaker

Geoff Gilbert is a Professor of Law in the School of Law and Human Rights Centre at the University of Essex, and is an affiliate member of the Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law. In 2012, he was appointed a Professorial Visiting Fellow at UNSW. He was Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Refugee Law from 2002-15; he is now Former Editor-in-Chief and sits on the Advisory Board. His areas of interest are international criminal law, the protection of refugees and other displaced persons in international law, the protection of minorities in international law, international humanitarian law and international human rights law.

He was founding Director of Studies for UNHCR’s annual Thematic Refugees and Human Rights course for judges, government officials and UNHCR staff at the International Institute for Humanitarian Law, Sanremo, Italy, from 2005 to 2007. In 2014 he was appointed a consultant to UNHCR (with Anna Magdalena Rüsch) on the project Rule of Law: Engagement for Solutions and is part of the Solutions Alliance Thematic Group on Rule of Law.

His expertise has been sought by the UK Joint Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights, the UK Department for International Development, and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. He has carried out human rights training on behalf of the Council of Europe and UNHCR in numerous countries. He has advised governments on their laws in Central and Eastern Europe, the Balkans and the FSU, and was the Director of the OSCE training programme on combating torture for judges in Serbia and Montenegro. In 2009 he was elected a Bencher of the Middle Temple and was called in February 2010. 


The Kaldor Centre plays a vital role in developing legal, sustainable and humane solutions for displaced people around the world.