The Future of Reparations at the International Criminal Court: Addressing the Danger of Inflated Expectations

CIGI Junior Fellows Policy Brief No. 5

June 25, 2013

The International Criminal Court’s (ICC) restorative mandate includes providing reparations to victims of mass atrocities, and with Thomas Lubanga Dyilo’s conviction in March 2012, the ICC now faces the first test of its reparations regime. This regime is positioned to fail, especially given its limitations, such as the exclusion of victims of sexual violence. The first Jr. Fellows policy brief of 2013, authored by Jr. Fellows Alison Bottomley and Heather Pryse, examines what the ICC must do in order to create a functional, meaningful and effective reparations mandate, including approaching it from a minimalist standpoint. The authors conclude that the ICC’s commitment to achieving victim-centred justice will be hindered by its current reparations regime, and without meaningful changes to the regime, the ICC’s legitimacy will be in question.

Part of Series

CIGI Junior Fellows Policy Brief Series

The CIGI Junior Fellows program at the Balsillie School of International Affairs provides masters level students with mentorship opportunities from senior scholars and policy makers. Working under the direction of a project leader, each junior fellow conducts research in one of CIGI’s program areas. This series presents those policy briefs that met CIGI’s publications standards.

About the Authors

Alison Bottomley is a master’s candidate at the University of Waterloo’s Global Governance program at the BSIA and a junior fellow at CIGI.

Heather Pryse is completing a master’s degree in global governance through the University of Waterloo based at the BSIA. She graduated from the University of Western Ontario with a B.A (honours) in criminology.