Rethinking democracy & law

This project will rethink the way teaching is done in the field of Democracy & Law. It will do so by building a new four-way collaboration between the University of Bergen/LawTransform; two US universities who are at the forefront in this field: the University of Washington (UW) and Syracuse University; and the Bergen based Rafto […]

Women on the Bench: The Role of Female Judges in Fragile States

Since the 1970s, women have increasingly  made it to the bench. Surprisingly, the proportion of women judges is generally higher in post-conflict countries than in well-established western democracies. Why is this so? Situations of political rupture generally create new opportunity structures; some may favour the entry of women into public positions of power. Post-conflict assistance […]

LawTransform: Effects of Rights & Law

The project aims to consolidate the Centre on Law & Social Transformation (LawTransform) as a leading hub for scholarship on the use of law as an instrument of social change, and to advance high-quality research-based education in this field in Norway and abroad. Background and purpose: Our project brings together an interdisciplinary team of scholars […]

The Pro Bono Group

We are a group at the University of Bergen that conduct research on children´s rights. Pro Bono is a Latin phrase for professional work and research undertaken voluntarily without payment and for the benefit of the public good. We believe that working for children and young individual’s rights is a particularly important social responsibility. In […]

Elevating water rights to human rights: Has it strengthened marginalized peoples’ claim for water?

Abstract: Water scarcity remains a huge problem in many countries, especially where a growing population compete with demands for water from industry and agriculture. In 2010, a United Nations General Assembly resolution recognised the right to safe and clean drinking water as a human right. However, the actual impact of this relatively new human right to […]

Political determinants of sexual and reproductive health: Criminalisation, health impacts and game changers

  Why is homosexuality (encompassing lesbian, gay, bi, trans*/LGBT) more politicized and criminalized in Africa than elsewhere? Can similar politicization of abortion be prevented? And what are the health impacts? This project analyses LGBT and abortion politics in ten African countries: Sudan, Tunisia, Senegal, Malawi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Mozambique, Zambia and South Africa. Development actors […]

PluriLand: Theorizing Conflict and Contestation in Plural Land Rights Regimes

Advisory board: Daniel Brinks, Aninka Claassens, Duncan Kennedy and Alf Gunvald Nilsen. The PluriLand project aims to develop a theory of land rights claiming in plural legal regimes through cross-regional investigation of conflicts over land affecting the land rights of vulnerable communities. Despite the protection of indigenous, traditional and/or communal land rights in many legal […]

Legitimacy challenges

The premise for the LEGITIMACY project is that the mobilization against the Norwegian child protection system is but one piece in a larger picture about mistrust in governments, politicians and the understanding of social and political movements in modern societies. Read more about the project here. LEGITIMACY is an ambitious project that will employ several […]

Breaking BAD: Understanding the Backlash Against Democracy in Africa

Project team: Lise Rakner (Project leader), Leonardo Arriola, Siri Gloppen , Kendra Dupuy, Vibeke Wang, Fiona Shen-Bayh, Svein-Erik Helle (post-doctoral fellow) and Lisa-Marie Måseidvåg Selvik (PhD candidate). Time frame: 08/01/2017-08/01/2021 Project description: Are dictators abusing formal institutions in a backlash against democracy, or are formal institutions increasingly restraining the discretionary power of more-or-less democratic politicians? Most African […]