Stefanie Grant

Stefanie Grant

Visiting senior fellow

LSE Human Rights

About me

Stefanie Grant's research interests focus on forced and involuntary migration, and on the human rights consequences of leaving a country of nationality as a refugee or migrant. Her recent work has been on deaths during migrant cross border journeys, the identification of those who die or go missing, and the rights of their families. Despite the global scale and frequency, states generally do not publish numbers, identify the dead or inform families. More than 8,000 deaths were reported in the Mediterranean alone in 2016 and 2017, but the focus of government action has been on preventing irregular migration, national security, and criminalisation of smuggling. She is currently working on human rights issues arising in the UN Global Migration Compact process.

Stefanie’s human rights experience includes heading Amnesty International’s Research Department in London, representing Amnesty in Washington DC, acting for immigrants and refugees as a solicitor in London, directing the research branch of the UN’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, and consulting for intergovernmental organisations. She is: Chair of the Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion; a trustee of the European Network on Statelessness, the Prisoner of Conscience Fund, and Independent Diplomat.  She has written on a range of topics related to human rights and migration, including the expert paper on human rights for the 2005 Global Commission on International Migration. 

Her work on migrant deaths has included advising the International Organisation for Migration and contributing to its report on migrant identification and tracing: Fatal Journeys II, and acting as human rights adviser to an ESRC-funded research project: ‘Mediterranean Missing: Understanding the Needs of Families and the Obligations of States' (read here). In 2016, in collaboration with the Last Rights Project,  she convened an expert consultation at the LSE Human Rights Centre on migrant and refugee border deaths - the first time the issue had been framed as a matter of human rights law. The outcome was a Statement setting out the legal duties of states to identify missing migrants, and respect the rights of their families: 'Last Rights: The Dead, the Missing and the Bereaved at Europe’s International Borders' (read here). The Statement was used to draft the May 2018 'Mytilini Declaration for the Dignified Treatment of all Missing and Deceased Persons and their Families as a Consequence of Migrant Journeys' (read here). The Statement has also informed UN work on the issue.

Publications include:

  • 'The US and the international human rights treaty system: for export only?' The Future of UN Human Rights Treaty Monitoring, ed. Alston & Crawford, CUP, 2000
  • 'Fatal Journeys - Volume 2: Identification and Tracing of Dead and Missing Migrants', commissioned expert paper, Global Commission on International Migration, 2005
  • 'The Human Rights of Legally Stranded Migrants', International Migration Law, ed. Cholewinski et al, TMC Asser, Netherlands, 2007
  • 'Migration and Frontier Deaths: A Right to Identity?' in Who Believes in the Rights of Migrants?, ed. Dembour & Kelly, Routledge, 2011.
  • ‘The Recognition of Migrants’ Rights within the UN Human Rights System: the first 60 years’,  in Who Believes in the Rights of Migrants?, ed Dembour & Kelly, Routledge, 2011.
  • 'Recording and Identifying European Frontier Deaths', EuropeanJournal of Migration and Law, 13.2, 2011
  • 'Identification and Tracing of Dead and Missing Migrants', Fatal Journeys II, IOM, Geneva, 2016
  • Guild, Elspeth and Grant, Stefanie, Migration Governance in the UN: What is the Global Compact and What Does it Mean?, Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 252/2017
  • Guild, Elspeth, Grant, Stefanie and Groenendijk, Kees, IOM and the UN: Unfinished Business, Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 255/2017.
  • 'Indirect Success? The Impact and Use of the International Covenant on Migrant Workers in United Nations Fora', with Beth Lyon, Shining New Light on the UN Migrant Workers Convention, ed. Desmond and Piper, Pretoria University Law Press, 2018.