Ainley, Kirsten

Dr Kirsten Ainley  


Position held

Assistant Professor


Assistant Professor


Experience keywords:

human rights; humanitarian intervention; international ethics; international political theory; the politics of international law, in particular international criminal law and war crimes trials

Research summary > [Click to expand]

The core concern that motivates my research is to identify the ethical practices that operate in international relations and to explore the history, inherent assumptions and empirical effects of these practices. I am particularly interested in the development and politics of international criminal law, and in notions of individual and collective responsibility, both in international law and in international political theory.

Sectors and industries to which research relates:


Countries and regions to which research relates:

Africa; US


German [Spoken: Basic, Written: Basic]; Spanish [Spoken: Basic, Written: Basic]

Contact Points

LSE phone number:

+44 (0)20 7107 5118



Ainley, Kirsten (2018) Retreat or retrenchment? An analysis of the International Criminal Court's failure to prosecute presidents In: Brysk, Alison and Stohl, Michael, (eds.) Contracting Human Rights: Crisis, Accountability, and Opportunity. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK, 179-193.


Ainley, Kirsten (2017) Virtue ethics In: Oxford Research Encyclopedia of International Studies. Oxford University Press and the International Studies Association.

Ainley, Kirsten and Danewid, Ida and Yao, Joanne (2017) Challenging the gender citation gap: what journals can do International Affairs Blog (22 Aug 2017) Blog entry

Ainley, Kirsten (2017) From atrocity crimes to human rights: expanding the focus of the responsibility to protect Global Responsibility to Protect, 9 (3). 243-266. ISSN 1875-9858

Ainley, Kirsten (2017) Evaluating the evaluators: transitional justice and the contest of values International Journal of Transitional Justice, 11 (3). 421-442. ISSN 1752-7716


Ainley, Kirsten (2016) Jaw-jaw, war and law The Disorder of Things (13 Sep 2016) Blog entry

Ainley, Kirsten (2016) The great escape? The role of the International Criminal Court in the Colombian peace process. Justice in Conflict (13 Oct 2016) Blog entry


Ainley, Kirsten and Friedman, Rebekka and Mahony, Chris (2015) Transitional justice in Sierra Leone: theory, history and evaluation In: Ainley, Kirsten and Friedman, Rebekka and Mahony, Chris, (eds.) Evaluating Transitional Justice: Accountability and Peacebuilding in Post-Conflict Sierra Leone. Palgrave Macmillan, London, UK, 1-18. ISBN 9781137468215

Ainley, Kirsten (2015) The responsibility to protect and the International Criminal Court: counteracting the crisis International Affairs, 91 (1). 37-54. ISSN 1468-2346

Ainley, Kirsten and Friedman, Rebekka and Mahony, Chris (2015) The potential and politics of transitional justice: interactions between the global and the local in evaluations of success In: Ainley, Kirsten and Friedman, Rebekka and Mahony, Chris, (eds.) Evaluating Transitional Justice: Accountability and Peacebuilding in Post-Conflict Sierra Leone. Palgrave Macmillan, London, UK, 265-280. ISBN 9781137468215

Ainley, Kirsten (2015) Evaluating the success of transitional justice in Sierra Leone and beyond In: Ainley, Kirsten and Friedman, Rebekka and Mahony, Chris, (eds.) Evaluating Transitional Justice: Accountability and Peacebuilding in Post-Conflict Sierra Leone. Palgrave Macmillan, London, UK, 241-264. ISBN 9781137468215

Ainley, Kirsten and Friedman, Rebekka and Mahony, Chris, eds (2015) Evaluating transitional justice: accountability and peacebuilding in post-conflict Sierra Leone Palgrave Macmillan, London, UK. ISBN 9781137468215


Ainley, Kirsten (2014) Justifying justice: verdicts at the ECCC Justice in Conflict (16 Sep 2014) Blog entry

Ainley, Kirsten (2014) Transitional justice in Cambodia: the coincidence of power and principle In: Jeffery, Renee and Kim, Hun Joon, (eds.) Transitional Justice in the Asia-Pacific. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 125-156. ISBN 9781107040373


Ainley, Kirsten and Datzberger, Simone and Friedman, Rebekka and Mahony, Chris (eds.) (2013) Ten years on: transitional justice in post conflict Sierra Leone: report and analysis of a conference held at Goodenough College, London. In: International Relations Public Conference: Ten Years On: Sierra Leone's Post-Conflict Transition, 11 December 2012, Goodenough College, London, UK


Ainley, Kirsten (2012) The social practice of institutional responsibility In: Erskine, Toni, (ed.) Responding to "Delinquent" Institutions: Blaming, Punishing, and Rehabilitating Collective Moral Agents in International Relati. Palgrave, London, UK.


Ainley, Kirsten (2011) Book review: political evil in a global age: Hannah Arendt and international theory - by Patrick Hayden International Affairs, 87 (2). 467-468. ISSN 0020-5850

Ainley, Kirsten (2011) Excesses of responsibility: the limits of law and the possibilities of politics Ethics and International Affairs, 25 (04). 407-431. ISSN 0892-6794

Ainley, Kirsten (2011) The International Criminal Court on trial Cambridge Review of International Affairs, 24 (3). 309-333. ISSN 0955-7571


Ainley, Kirsten (2010) The implications and imperfections of practice Human Rights Review. ISSN 1874-6306

Ainley, Kirsten (2010) Book review: ‘War Games: The Story of Aid and War in Modern Times’ by Linda Polman International Affairs, 86 (5). 1218-1221. ISSN 0020-5850

Ainley, Kirsten (2010) Book review: International justice in Rwanda and the Balkans: virtual trials and the struggle for state cooperation – by Victor Peskin International Affairs, 86 (4). 990-991. ISSN 0020-5850


Brown, Chris and Ainley, Kirsten (2009) Understanding international relations [4th edition] Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, UK. ISBN 9780230213104


Ainley, Kirsten (2008) Individual agency and responsibility for atrocity In: Jeffery, Renee, (ed.) Confronting Evil in International Relations: Ethical Responses to Problems of Moral Agency. Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, UK, 37-60. ISBN 9780230602632


Ainley, Kirsten (2006) Responsibility for atrocity: individual criminal agency and the International Criminal Court In: Parry, John T., (ed.) Evil, Law and the State: Perspectives on State Power and Violence. At the interface / probing the boundaries (v. 24). Rodopi, Amsterdam & New York, 143-158. ISBN 9789042017481

LSE Research Online|

Collection of LSE research outputs

LSE Consulting|

Service providing unique access
to LSE's expertise

Create or update your
online profile

[access restricted to staff]

Research highlights|

Short articles about LSE research