Alumni Senior Fellow

Prof. Dr Susanne Buckley-Zistel

Alumni Fellows

Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research
Schifferstraße 44
47059 Duisburg

Tel: +49 (0)203 379-5230
Fax: +49 (0)203 379-5276
E-mail: buckley-zistel@spam


Susanne Buckley-Zistel joined Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research as a Senior Fellow. She was conducting her research in Research Unit 4 “Paradoxes and Perspectives of Democratization” from April 2015 to March 2016.

Research Project at the Centre

Transitional Justice as a Travelling Norm. On the Influence of Local Concepts on Global Ideas

Within the field of peacebuilding, questions about the suitability and appropriateness of the introduction of the so-called liberal peace in post-conflict contexts have been debated for some time. Notions such as hybridity or global frictions seek to capture the encounters between external interveners and local agents and offer a foil against which to discuss degrees of adaptation, amendment, resistance or rejection. This is also relevant for transitional justice as one of the instruments of the ever-growing peacebuilding and democratisation toolbox. The direction of these academic investigations is mainly from the global to the local, from the outside to the inside. The objective of the proposed research project is to turn this form of global cooperation research on its head. Instead of focusing on how global norms such as transitional justice effect ‘the local’, it examines how local norms effect ‘the global’.

In order to do so, it analyses how transitional justice norms of the so-called global South travel upwards to the so-called West. It asks if and how Southern norms and their entrepreneurs influence the conceptualisation of Western transitional justice practitioners and scholars. Do Western normative frameworks change as a result of the encounter?

The project seeks to contribute to the critical literature on transitional justice in particular, and peacebuilding and democratisation in general, by offering an alternative understanding of how norms travel. By tracing and assessing the influence of Southern norms – in all their heterogeneity – it endows local transitional justice entrepreneurs with a degree of agency in the context of peacebuilding and democratisation discourses which often regard them merely as victims of, and subjected to, global norms.

Research Interests

  • Transitional Justice and Dealing with the Past
  • Peacebuilding
  • Civil Wars
  • Development Assistance
  • Gender
  • Post-positivist Theories
  • Regional Focus: Africa

Current Projects

Gender Relations in Confined Spaces. Conditions, Scope and Forms of Sexual Violence against Women in Conflict-related Refugee Camps. (DSF 2013-2015)


Since 02/2012 Philipps University Marburg, Germany
Center for Conflict Studies
Executive Director
Since 06/2009 Philipps University Marburg
Center for Conflict Studies
Professor for Peace and Conflict Studies
10/2008-05/2009 Freie Universität Berlin
Otto-Suhr Institute for Political Science
Principal Investigator of the DFG-funded Project 'The Politics of Building Peace: an Analysis of Transitional Justice, Reconciliation Initiatives and Unification Policies in War-torn Societies'
05/2008-09/2008 Freie Universität Berlin
Otto-Suhr Institute for Political Science
Substitute for Prof. Dr. Christoph Zürcher, Chair of International Relations
11/2007-03-2008 SFB Governance in Areas of Limited Statehood, Berlin
Guest Researcher
01/2003-12/2006 Peace Research Institute Frankfurt
Principle Investigator of DSF-funded research project 'Between Past and Future. An Assessment of the Transition from Conflict to Peace in Post-Genocide Rwanda'
01/2002-12/2002 International Policy Institute, King's College, London
Conflict Security and Development Group (CSDG)
Research Fellow
10/1997-08/2002 London School of Economics and Political Science, London
Ph.D. Degree in International Relations
10/1995-09/1996 University of Kent at Canterbury, London Centre of International Relations
Master of Arts Degree in International Relations
10/1991-09/1994 University of Mannheim, Germany
Undergraduate Studies in Politics, Media & Communication Studies and Public Law


Buckley-Zistel, Susanne with Ulrike Krause and Lisa Loeper (2014): Sexuelle und geschlechterbasierte Gewalt an Frauen in kriegsbedingten Flüchtlingslagern. Ein Literaturüberblick <Sexual and genderbased violence against women in conflictbased refugee camps>, in: Peripherie 133 (34): 45–63.

Buckley-Zistel, Susanne with Stefanie Schäfer (eds.) (2014): Memorials in Times of Transitional. Antwerp: Intersentia (Transitional Justice Series 16).

Buckley-Zistel, Susanne and Stefanie Schäfer (eds.) (2014): Detained in the Memorial Hohenschönhausen: Heterotopias, Narratives and Transitions from the Stasi Past in Germany, in: Memorials in Times of Transition, Antwerp: Intersentia, 97-124.

Buckley-Zistel, Susanne with Teresa Koloma Beck, Christian Braun and Friederike Mieth, (eds.) (2014) Transitional Justice Theories, Abington: Routledge.

Buckley-Zistel, Susanne (2011): Between Pragmatism, Coercion and Fear. Chosen Amnesia after the Rwandan Genocide, in: Aleida Assmann and Lind Shortt (eds.), Memory in Transition, Basingstoke, Palgrave.

Buckley-Zistel, Susanne (2008): Conflict Transformation and Social Change in Uganda: Remembering After Violence (Rethinking Peace and Conflict Studies). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Teaching Responsibilities

Teaching positions in politics, international relations and peace and conflict studies at the London School of Economics, Birkbeck College London, Freie Universität Berlin and University of Marburg.

Expertise and Consulting Work

  • Consultant, Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen, ZIVIK, 09/2008
  • Consultant, CSSP for Integrative Mediation, Berlin, 06-10/2007
  • Consultant, GTZ (now:GIZ), Uganda, 01-05/2000 and 04-06/2007

Seminars and Conferences

  • 25-27 September 2014: Offene Sektionstagung Internationale Politik, Magdeburg: Normen jenseits global/local. DVPW 4.
  • 6-9 August 2014: WISC 4th Global International Studies Conference, Frankfurt, Convenor (mit Annika Björkdahl) des Panels Where Peace Takes Place. Analysing Justice, Peace and Stability from a Spatial Perspective and Convenor (mit Irene Weipert-Fenner) des Panels Transitional Justice after the Arab Spring.
  • 16-18 June 2014: ISA Human Rights Joint Conference, Kadir Has University, Istanbul: Truth Commissions, Human Rights and Gender. Normative Changes in Transitional Moments.
  • 27-28 May 2013: 3rd ISP Network Conference: Institutional Reforms in Post-war and Divided Societies, Graduate Institute Geneva, Geneva: Discussantin auf dem Panel Institutional Reforms in Divided Societies.
  • 2-3 April 2014: Käte Hamburger Center for Global Cooperation: Workshop Global Cooperation in Transitional Justice, Local and Global Spaces of Transitional Justice.
  • 24 February 2014: Stiftung Gedenkstätte Berlin-Hohenschönhausen, Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit, Berlin: Discussant at Zwischen Vergangenheit und Zukunft  - Diktaturaufarbeitung aus deutscher und internationaler Perspektive.
  • 14-15 February 2014: Feministische Kritik und Menschenrechte, Tagung des AK Politik und Geschlecht, University Erlangen-Nürnberg: Wahrheitskommissionen und Gender in Zeiten des Übergangs. Im Panel Feministische Perspektiven auf geschlechtsbezogene Gewalt und gesellschaftliche Transformationsprozesse. 
  • 23-25 January 2014: International Symposium Peacebuilding in Crisis? Experience and New Perspectives, University Osnabrück, Peacebuilding: A Gendered Concept? Im Panel Peacebuilding Paradigms Revisted.


Working Groups and Networks:

  • Working Group 'Human Rights of the 20th Century' of the Fritz-Thyssen Stiftung
  • Network 'Institutions for Sustainable Peace - Comparing Institutional Configurations for Divided Societies' (funded by Leibniz Association, GIGA, Hamburg)
  • Network Konstruktivistische Konfliktforschung (NeKoKo), DFG


  • Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Friedens- und Konfliktforschung e. V. (AFK)
  • German Political Science Association (Deutsche Vereinigung für Politische Wissenschaft, DVPW)
  • Peace and Conflict Studies in Social Anthropology (PACSA)
  • Plattform Zivile Konfliktbearbeitung
  • Association for African Studies in Germany (Vereinigung für Afrikawissenschaften in Deutschland e. V., VAD)


  • 1998 and 1999 Benjamin Lippincott Award for Political Theory, London School of Economics

Dr Philip Liste

Dr. Blayne Haggart

Prof. Dr Marianne Marchand

Dr Tamirace Fakhoury

Dr Adam Sandor

Prof. Dr Claudia Derichs

Dr Stephen Adaawen

Dr Dr Ariel Hernández

Prof. Dr Frank Adloff

Dr Bettina Mahlert

Dr Franz Mauelshagen

Prof. Dr Dr Marlies Ahlert

Dr Zeynep Sahin Mencutek

Dr Mariana Nardone

Dr Ying Shen

Prof. Dr Andreas Thiel

Dr Esref Aksu

Dr Micheline van Riemsdijk

Prof. Dr Wouter Werner

Dr Pol Bargués-Pedreny

Dr Burcu Bayram

Dr Isaline Bergamaschi

Dr Felix Bethke

Dr Sarah Van Beurden

Jun.-Prof. Dr Manuel Borutta

Gerardo Bracho

Dr Morgan Brigg

Prof. Dr Lothar Brock

Prof. Stephen Brown

Prof. Dr Susanne Buckley-Zistel

Prof. Dr Bettina Burger-Menzel

Dr Alessandra Cappelletti

Prof. David Carment, Ph.D.

Dr Paula Castro

Dr Ayse Cavdar

Prof. Dr Gerald Chan

Prof. David Chandler

Prof. Hongming Cheng

Prof. Dr Manjiao Chi

Prof. Andrew Cooper

Prof. Dr Larry Crump

Prof. Dr Susan Erikson

Dr Alejandro Esguerra

Prof. Dr Isabel Feichtner

Dr Peter Finkenbusch

Jaroslava Gajdošová, Ph.D.

Prof. Noemi Gal-Or, Ph.D., LL.B.

Dr Daniel Gaus

Mneesha Gellman, Ph.D.

Dr Payam Ghalehdar

Prof. Faten Ghosn

Dr Gianluca Grimalda

Dr Jennifer Gronau

Dr Stefan Groth

Prof. Dr Eric Grynaviski

Dr Petra Gümplová

Prof. Dr Gunther Hellmann

Dr Heike Hennig-Schmidt

Prof. Dr Pablo Holmes

Dr Joe Hoover

Prof. Dr Jon Hovi

Prof. Meibo Huang

Dr Abou Jeng

Prof. Dr Anja Jetschke

Prof. Dr Jonathan Joseph

Dr Yannis Kallianos

Dr phil. habil. Otto Kallscheuer

Prof. Dr Babacar Kanté

Prof. Dr Ina Kerner

Dr Kai Koddenbrock

Mag. Dr Martina Kopf

Prof. Dr Bernd Lahno

Prof. Siddharth Mallavarapu

Dr Xavier Mathieu

Aysem Mert, Ph.D.

PD Dr Christian Meyer

Dr Charmaine Misalucha-Willoughby

Dr Elisabetta Nadalutti

Dr James Nyomakwa-Obimpeh

Dr Dirk Peters

Dr Steven Pierce

Prof. Elena Pulcini

Prof. Dr Sigrid Quack

Dr Salvador Santino F. Regilme

Dr Nicole Renvert

Dr Mathieu Rousselin

Dr Galya Ruffer

Dr Olivia Rutazibwa

Mag. Dr Ariane Sadjed

Dr Shirin Saeidi

Prof. Dr Enrique Saravia

Dr Andrea Schapper

Prof. Dr Klaus Schlichte

Dr Jessica Schmidt

Dr Mario Schmidt

Prof. Dr Ulrich Schneckener

Prof. Jan Aart Scholte

Dr habil. Birgit Schwelling

Dr Katrin Seidel

Dr Balraj K. Sidhu

Dr Deepshikha Shahi

Dr Abdolkarim Soroush

Prof. Detlef Sprinz, Ph.D.

Dr Holger Straßheim

Dr Ángela Suárez-Collado

Dr Liam Swiss

Prof. Dr Christian J. Tams

Margret Thalwitz

Dr Peter Thiery

Prof. emerit. Arild Underdal

Dr rer. pol. Winfried Veit

Dr Wanda Vrasti

Prof. Dong Wang

Dr Hung-Jen Wang

Prof. Dr Herbert Wulf

Prof. Dr Dvora Yanow

Dr Fariborz Zelli

Prof. Dr Shirin Zubair