“Transitional Justice from Below”
Practical Tools for Amplifying Community Voices

Wednesday June 18, 2014

ABA Rule of Law Initiative
1050 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.
5th Floor
Washington, D.C. 20036


International development practitioners increasingly recognize the role that affected communities play in designing transitional justice strategies that effectively promote accountability, reconciliation and peace. Participation increases the likelihood that transitional justice mechanisms will be responsive to the unique needs and challenges of communities, whose experiences of the past are likely to vary widely. This, in turn, bolsters popular support for transitional justice and strengthens the legitimacy of related institutions. Ensuring community participation, however, can be challenging, with policymaking often isolated to a core group of government and civil society actors operating at the national level.

The panelists will discuss mechanisms that facilitate community participation within transitional justice policymaking, including participatory research, large-scale population-based surveys and media and the arts. ABA ROLI will also share a recently published technical guide, Community Participation in Transitional Justice: A Role for Participatory Research. The guide, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, provides a detailed methodology for using participatory research to nurture community-driven approaches to transitional justice. 

You can participate in this event live, at our headquarters office, or streaming 



8:45–9:15 a.m.

Networking Breakfast

9:15–9:25 a.m.

Opening Remarks

Andrew Solomon, Transitional Justice Advisor, U.S. Agency for International Development [view bio]

9:25–10:45 a.m.

Panel

Lena Slachmuijlder, Vice President for Programs, Search for Common Ground [view bio]

Patrick Vinck, PhD, Research Scientist, Harvard University School of Public Health; Associate Faculty, Harvard Humanitarian Initiative [view bio]

Jim Wormington, Acting Deputy Africa Director and Senior Legal Analyst, ABA Rule of Law Initiative [view bio]


Bios 

Lena Slachmuijlder, Vice President for Programs, Search for Common Ground (SFCG), oversees program quality, innovation and impact across 53 offices in 34 countries. Ms. Slachmuijlder also has served SFCG as country director in the Democratic Republic of Congo and as the Burundi-based Great Lakes media manager, during which time she led Studio Ijambo, a radio station that promoted dialogue, peace and reconciliation. During her 21 years living in Africa, Ms. Slachmuijlder worked as a journalist, human rights defender, producer, cultural facilitator and trainer, among other vocations. She has practical experience in supporting transitional justice, with a particular focus on its intersection with media and the arts. These efforts include a documentary on heroes from the Burundian genocide; a program that sent Burundian journalists to other countries that had experienced genocide and that produced radio programs on the journalists’ experiences; and working as a journalist under apartheid in South Africa and later leading media activities around the country’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission. As an International Fellow in Brandeis University’s Recasting Reconciliation Through Arts and Culture Program, Ms. Slachmuijlder published The Rhythm of Reconciliation: A Reflection on Drumming as a Contribution to Reconciliation Processes in Burundi and South Africa. 


Andrew Solomon, Transitional Justice Advisor, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Prior to joining USAID’s Center of Excellence on Democracy, Human Rights and Governance, Mr. Solomon was a director in the Security and Justice Practice at BlueLaw International and served as senior technical advisor on rule of law projects funded by USAID and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement. Previously, Mr. Solomon served as a Foreign Policy Fellow and Deputy Director of the Brookings Institution’s Project on Internal Displacement, where he formally supported the mandate of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons. He has held senior positions with the American Society of International Law, the American Bar Association Central European and Eurasian Law Initiative, the Office of the High Representative in Bosnia, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.


Patrick Vinck, PhD, Research Scientist, Harvard University School of Public Health; Associate Faculty, Harvard Humanitarian Initiative (HHI). Before joining HHI, Dr. Vinck directed and co-founded the Initiative for Vulnerable Populations at the University of California at Berkeley, where he focused on managing and implementing empirical studies on the process of social reconstruction in countries affected by mass violence. His work is informed by his experiences working on development projects in Africa. Dr. Vinck also-cofounded KoBo, a digital data collection project to advance human rights research. He serves on the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s Committee on Scientific Freedom and Responsibility; as an adjunct associate professor at Tulane University’s Payson Center for International Development; and as a consultant with the United Nations World Food Programme. He has been published in journals covering multiple disciplines, including political science, social science, public health and medicine. He holds an engineering degree in applied biological sciences from Belgium’s Gembloux Agricultural University, and a Ph.D. in international development from Tulane University.


Jim Wormington, Acting Deputy Africa Director and Senior Legal Analyst, ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI). Mr. Wormington conducts legal and policy research to strengthen ABA ROLI’s international rule of law reform programs. He also manages transitional justice and human rights-focused initiatives in Africa, including a participation-based transitional justice program in Mali. His areas of specialization include participatory research, transitional justice and legal empowerment. Mr. Wormington is lead author of a recently published USAID technical guide titled, Community Participation in Transitional Justice: A Role for Participatory Research. Prior to joining ABA ROLI, Mr. Wormington was a barrister at QEB Hollis Whiteman Chambers in London. He has also worked at the International Crisis Group and at the War Crimes Chamber of the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

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