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derecho_01Call for Submissions: The International Criminal Court’s Policies and Strategies

Source: International Law Reports

October 18, 2016.
To mark 15 years since the coming into force of the Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on 1 July 2002, theJournal of International Criminal Justiceis pleased to announce a forthcoming symposium on ‘The International Criminal Court’s Policies and Strategies’ to be published in July 2017.


Almost 15 years into its existence – and notwithstanding almost continuous and at times justified criticism – the ICC continues to consolidate its role in the international community and expand the scope of its activities. Considering the significance and growing number of types of criminal conduct under scrutiny, and the possible repercussions of its activities on ongoing conflicts as well as on post-conflict and transitional processes of justice, the ICC has, from its inception, understood the necessity for a scrupulous, transparent and coherent planning of its activities. To this end, the Court and its various organs have continually issued a number of documents explaining the Court’s policies on numerous distinct issues as well as its strategies for the future.

Of these, particular relevance attaches to the strategic plans and policy papers released by the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP),1especially in an environment where prosecutorial choices are by nature discretionary and not dictated by the ICC Statute or any external actors. These documents have, on the one hand, touched upon themes such as the interests of justice, gender-based violence or crimes against children and, on the other, clarified procedural issues such as case selection and prioritization, preliminary examinations and victims’ participation.

The Journal’s Editorial Committee believes that the time has come to take a closer and systematic look at ICC OTP policies and strategies, looking at the choices made thus far, the level of transparency and consistency, as well as suggesting avenues to strengthen the overall effectiveness and credibility of ICC investigative and prosecutorial strategies.
Key questions or topics that could be examined include, but are not limited to:
• the need for clear and transparent policies available to the general public and to state parties, also in light of the complementarity system;
• who are the target audiences of such policies once published and what is their nature (binding or not);
• the methodology of drafting and then ensuring implementation of policies concerning such highly complex and contentious issues;
• the overall coherence of policies and strategic plans adopted so far by the OTP;
• the propriety and effectiveness of one (or more) of those policies currently available and suggestions for amendment or improvement; and
• gaps/areas where planning or transparency is most needed, possibly in the form of a policy paper, including concrete proposals for the content of such policies and strategies.

The Journal calls for submission of abstracts not exceeding 500 words on the questions described above, or related areas of interest, no later than 15 November 2016. After the abstracts are reviewed, in early December, the Editorial Committee will invite a number of contributors to submit full papers of no more than 8000 words (including an abstract and footnotes) by 28 February 2017.

All papers submitted to the Journal are subject to its double-blind peer-review policy.
It is expected that the symposium will be published in the Journalin its third issue of the year in July 2017, in time to celebrate the anniversary of the entry into force of the ICC Statute on 1 July 2002.

For questions and further information, including on the Journal’s style requirements, please contact the Executive Editor at jicj@geneva-academy.ch.

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