Elazar Barkan is Professor of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University, and Director of Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights. Professor Barkan is also founding Director of the Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation (IHJR) in The Hague. He is a historian by training and received his PhD from Brandeis University.
Professor Barkan’s research interests focus on human rights and on the role of history in contemporary society and politics and the response to gross historical crimes and injustices. His human rights work seeks to achieve conflict resolution and reconciliation by bringing scholars from two or more sides of a conflict together and employing historical methodology to create shared narratives across political divides and to turn historical dialogue into a fundamental tool of political reconciliation. His other current research interests include refugee repatriation, the comparative analysis of historical commissions, shared sacred sites, and the question of human rights impact, specifically with regard to redress and transitional justice.
Professor Barkan’s recent books include No Return, No Refuge: Rites and Rights in Minority Repatriation (with Howard Adelman, Columbia University Press, 2011); The Guilt of Nations: Restitution and Negotiating Historical Injustices (Norton, 2000); Taking Wrongs Seriously: Apologies and Reconciliation (an edited volume with Alexander Karn, Stanford University Press, 2006); and Claiming the Stones/Naming the Bones: Cultural Property and the Negotiation of National and Ethnic Identity (an edited volume with Ronald Bush, Getty, 2003).
W. James Booth
W. James Booth is a Professor in the Departments of Political Science and Philosophy at Vanderbilt University. Before coming to Vanderbilt, Professor Booth was on the faculties of McGill University and Duke University. At Vanderbilt, he teaches courses in the history of political thought, religion and politics, and graduate and undergraduate seminars on topics in contemporary theory.
Professor Booth’s current research is focused on memory, identity and justice. His most recent book, Communities of Memory: On Witness, Identity, and Justice, is centered around those issues, and several articles further develop and explore them in the context of race in America and violence in Northern Ireland. Booth has also written extensively on economics and justice, and on topics in the history of political theory, including ancient Greek economic thought, Kant’s philosophy of history and politics, and Marx’s understanding and critique of capitalism.
Professor Booth’s books include, among others, Communities of Memory: On Witness, Identity, and Justice (Cornell University Press, 2006); Households: On the Moral Architecture of the Economy (Cornell University Press, 1993); and Interpreting the World: A Study of Kant’s Philosophy of History and Politics (University of Toronto Press, 1986).
Mick Gooda is Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner. The position was created by parliament in December 1992; it was a response to the findings of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody and the National Inquiry into Racist Violence, and to the extreme social and economic disadvantage faced by Indigenous Australians. Mr Gooda’s five-year appointment began in February 2010.
Previously, Mr Gooda was the Chief Executive Officer of the Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health (CRCAH), Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission and Senior Consultant to the Aboriginal Legal Service (WA). He has more than twenty-five years of experience of working on Indigenous policy issues in the public service and the community sector.
Mick Gooda is a descendant of the Gangulu people of central Queensland.
Dr Rama Mani is a Councillor of the World Future Council. She is a Senior Research Associate of the University of Oxford’s Centre for International Studies, and Director of the Carnegie Corporation-funded project, Responsibility to Protect: Southern Cultural Perspectives. She is an Associate Faculty Member and former Director of the New Issues in Security Course at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP). Previously, Rama Mani served as the Executive Director/CEO of the International Centre for Ethnic Studies (Colombo) from January 2007 to April 2008, and was Oxfam Great Britain’s Africa Strategy Manager and Regional Policy Coordinator for Oxfam (GB) based in Ethiopia and Uganda. She is the initiator of Justice Unlimited, a small non-profit organisation that promotes peace and justice through creative and cultural wisdom, and supports other innovative initiatives. She holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Cambridge and an M.A. in International Affairs from Johns Hopkins University.
Dr Rama Mani has devoted her work to the pursuit of peace, justice and human security, as a scholar, practitioner and policy analyst.
Dr Mani is the author of Beyond Retribution: Seeking Justice in the Shadows of War (Polity/Blackwell 2002, reprinted 2007) and numerous scholarly articles on peace, justice, terrorism and democracy. She is also the co-editor of Responsibility to Protect: Cultural Perspectives in the Global South (with Thomas G. Weiss, Routledge, 2011), which will be launched during the conference at the University of Melbourne (to attend the launch, please register here).
Steve J. Stern
Steve J. Stern is Alberto Flores Galindo and Hilldale Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He also serves as Vice-Provost for Faculty and Staff. He is a historian by training and received his PhD from Yale University.
Professor Stern researches and teaches Latin American history. His interests often focus on the various ways people cope with problems of power and social conflict in their societies. Specific research themes have included Amerindian responses to colonialism, gender relations, political economy, social acquiescence and rebelliousness, and memories of trauma and political violence. His regional interests focus especially on the Andes, Mexico, and Chile/Southern Cone. More recently, Professor Stern has been interested in Latin American cinema.
Professor Stern’s recent books include Reckoning with Pinochet: The Memory Question in Democratic Chile, 1989-2006 (Duke University Press, 2010); Battling for Hearts and Minds: Memory Struggles in Pinochet’s Chile, 1973-1988 (Duke University Press, 2006); Remembering Pinochet’s Chile: On the Eve of London 1998 (Duke University Press, 2004); Shining and Other Paths: War and Society in Peru, 1980-1995 (Duke University Press, 1995); and The Secret History of Gender: Women, Men, and Power in Late Colonial Mexico (University of North Carolina Press, 1995).