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Centre Personnel

Executive Board: Penny Green, Tony Ward, Kristian Lasslett, Thomas MacManus, Fatima Kanji, Louise Wise

Honorary Fellows: Noam Chomsky, John Pilger, Richard Falk

Centre Website:


The International State Crime Initiative (ISCI) is a cross-disciplinary research centre that is collaboratively administered by Ulster University, Queen Mary University of London, Northumbria University and Harvard University.

Our staff team incorporates backgrounds in law, criminology, and the social sciences. We aim to introduce new perspectives to the field of human rights research, which has traditionally been focused on legal theory and mechanisms, but today exists as an intersection of academic fields.

ISCI is a community of scholars working to further our understanding of state crime. By state crime we mean state organisational deviance resulting in human rights violations. This includes crimes committed, instigated, or condoned by state agencies or by non-state entities that control substantial territory.

The concept of state crime includes but extends beyond legal categories of human rights abuse and international crime. Our focus is on victims as key actors in defining, exposing and challenging state violence and corruption. ISCI takes the term ‘crime’ to include all violations of human rights that are ‘deviant’ in the sense that they infringe some socially recognised norm.

ISCI is an interdisciplinary forum for research, reportage and debate. Through both empirical and theoretical enquiry we aim to connect rigorous research with emancipatory activism.

Major Projects

  • 2016-2017 'Uncovering their Tracks: State Crime in Central Asia' (Open Society Foundation, $US144,000)
  • 2014-2015 'Rapid Descent into Genocide in Myanmar?', (ESRC, £160,504)
  • 2011-2014 'Resisting State Crime: A Comparative Study of Civil Society' (ESRC, £830,000);

Key Resources

  1. State Crime: An International Journal,
  2. The State Crime Testimony Project,
  3. ISCI Seminar Series