The Generating Respect Hub at the Centre for Applied Human Rights (CAHR) is anchored in, and seeks to transform, the dire empirical reality of armed conflict.

Logo reads: Generating Respect Hub, Norms compliance in war/

Humanitarian norms aim to 'humanise' war by requiring parties to armed conflict to protect civilians from attacks, detainees from abuse, and to facilitate humanitarian assistance. Yet, across the globe, and far too often, civilians are killed, detainees are ill-treated, and hospitals are bombed. 

The Generating Respect Hub at the Centre for Applied Human Rights (CAHR) is both anchored in, and seeks to transform, this dire empirical reality of armed conflict. 

We work with humanitarian, human rights and transitional justice actors, as well as with civilian groups engaged in self-protection to co-produce creative strategies for respect-generation in war. We seek to centre the voices of those with lived experience of war - this means that we favour socio-legal methods and participatory action research. It also means that we look at, but also beyond, international humanitarian law as a tool for compliance. 

The Generating Respect Hub continues CAHR’s tradition of co-productive work and builds  on empirical and conceptual findings from past research, such as the Generating Respect Project, the Ritualising Protection Project, and Transformative Justice.

Building the evidence base

In addition to threats to life and limb, armed conflict has a differentiated and intersectional impact on differently-situated groups. Displacement, acute food insecurity, lack of access to education, the interruption of individual and collective life projects - these are, equally, experiences of need and harm caused or exacerbated by conflict.

Led by Professor Ioana Cismas, the Beyond Compliance Consortium, formed of three universities, six humanitarian actors and a plurality of local actors, is funded through a major grant by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. The research progamme aims to provide the empirical evidence, the conceptual framework, and actionable, actor-targeted strategies to prevent, reduce and respond to need and harm. 

Bridging capacities

The Generating Respect Hub is involved in a number of projects with long-term partners.

  • As part of our strategic partnership with Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict, we launched The Children and Armed Conflict Publications Series, supporting policy-makers and other stakeholders to enhance the protection of children affected by war. Our postgraduate students have seized the opportunity to provide research support for Watchlist’s flagship publication A Credible List - Recommendations for the UN Secretary General’s 2024 Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict. 
  • As a direct follow-up to the Generating Respect Project, we support capacity-bridging work led by the Diakonia International Humanitarian Law Centre with female religious leaders in Mali. 
  • We provide editorial support to the ICRC’s Religion and Humanitarian Principles blog.

The Generating Respect Hub is coordinated by Samantha Holmes.