Annual Conference on Contemporary Rule of Law Issues

Rule of Law Approaches to Countering Violent Extremism




Georgetown University Law Center
600 New Jersey Ave. NW Washington, DC

May 4, 2017

9:00 AM - 6:00 PM ET

The relationship between the rule of law and contemporary efforts to counter violent extremism is complex and multi-faceted, raising challenging questions such as: 

  • What gaps in the rule of law contribute to violent extremism?
  • How can we ensure that justice sector responses prevent rather than provoke extremist violence?
  • What rule of law interventions work to counter deter violence and build resilient rights protections and secure societies?

The annual American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) Contemporary Rule of Law Issues Conference will tackle these questions, convening leading scholars, rule of law development professionals and policy-makers for a day-long exchange of lessons learned. 

Preliminary Schedule of Events:

9:00 – 10:30 a.m. - Welcome and Introductory Remarks

The Rule of Law, Violent Extremism, and Policy Responses: What do we know?

This introductory panel discussion will feature leading academics and practitioners in a survey of the current literature about the relationship between gaps in the rule of law, violent extremism and policy responses.

10:30 – 10:45 a.m. - Coffee Break

10:45 – 12:00 p.m.

Rule of Law Responses:  Effective Criminal Justice Responses

Violence requires a criminal justice response and accountability for perpetrators.  And yet such responses are sometimes characterized by extreme measures that violate international standards and themselves contribute to radicalization. How can criminal justice approaches effectively deter violent extremism? What models and best practices work?

12:00 – 2:00 p.m. - Luncheon and Keynote Discussion

2:15 – 3:30 p.m.

Rule of Law Responses:  Expanding Personal Freedoms and Opportunity

Research suggests that personal experiences with the state may affect radicalization.  How do individuals experience corruption, disenfranchisement, discrimination, violence and a lack of accountability? What role does economic opportunity play? How do these experiences affect radicalization? And what kinds of interventions can make a difference?

3:30 – 3:45 p.m. - Coffee Break

3:45 – 5:00 p.m.

Rule of Law Responses:  Building Community Resilience

Community resilience can be another critical element of an effective response to extremist violence. What strategies work to strengthen communities, foster peaceful resolution of disputes and build community resilience to violent extremism?

5:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Guiding Principles and Lessons Learned: Rapporteurs’ Summary Discussion

6:00 p.m. - Networking Reception


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