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  International refugee law: is universality of eligibility criteria achievable? is it desirable?

   School of Law

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  Dr Ruvi Ziegler  Applications accepted all year round  Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

2022 was yet another record year for forced displacement globally with UNHCR suggesting 32.5 Million people classified (under its interpretation of global instruments) as 'refugees'. Meanwhile, 146 countries are signatories to the foundational instrument of refugee protection, the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, and 147 countries are signatories to the 1967 New York Protocol which extended the Convention's scope of application beyond Europe and removed its temporal restrictions.

Yet, the benchmarks/standards applied by signatory countries for determining eligibility for refugee status in their jurisdiction vary greatly, not least given the absence of an authoritative global refugee adjudicative body, and the fact that they may also be signatories to regional instruments which include modified eligibility criteria that apply (only) in that region. 

Is this global state of affairs unavoidable, what are the alternatives, and will they entail greater or lesser protection for convention refugees? Are there specific areas / subject matters (e.g. the interpretation/understanding of 'membership of a particular social group') where variability is less / more prevalent, and if so, why? Can variable regional protection arrangements be normatively justified, and are they inevitable? These are some of the queries that would benefit from further exploration utilising doctrinal, comparative, and/or empirical methods.

Applicants should meet the University’s entry requirements.

Law (22)

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 About the Project